This recipe came about after I bought a bag of yellow split peas on a whim to make a daal, and never quite got around to it. Fishing them out of the back of the storecupboard this week, I was determined to finally put them to use, so I asked my blog readers what they thought I should make out of them. Several people enthusiastically suggested soup – so with a little trial and error and a lot of surreptitious tasting along the way, here’s what I ended up with. Thick, creamy, comforting and delicious – I’ll never be at a loss what to do with a bag of split peas again.


100g dried yellow split peas

1 onion

2 cloves of garlic

2 carrots

1 tbsp oil

1 tsp each cumin and turmeric, or 2 tsp garam masala

100g yoghurt

Handful of parsley or coriander

First, pop the dried yellow split peas into a bowl and cover with water. Cover with clingfilm or a plate, and leave to soak for at least eight hours, or overnight.

Then, peel and finely chop the onion and garlic, and slice the carrots. Pop into a medium sized saucepan with the oil and spices, and saute on a medium heat for five minutes to soften.

Drain and thoroughly rinse the peas, and tip into the pan. Cover with water and stir well. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 20 minutes, or until the peas and carrots are soft.

Pour the mixture into a blender, tip the yoghurt in, and pulse until almost smooth. I like to leave mine a bit rough and chunky for a great texture, but it’s up to you.

Serve hot, with bread to dunk in, and torn parsley or coriander to garnish.

**VEGANS** Replace the yoghurt with soy yoghurt, or almond or rice milk for a real treat.

**MAKE IT GO FURTHER** Freeze leftovers in small portions to use as a spicy, chunky pasta sauce, or the base for a curry for leftover chicken. Just defrost in a saute pan with a little water, stir in the chicken and any green veg you have to hand, and you have a pretty instant curry. It works just as well without the chicken, too. I’m thinking green beans, broccoli, peas – a colourful, healthy, sensationally quick dinner.

Jack Monroe. Twitter: @MxJackMonroe



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  1. Could you use other lentils for this? I’ve got a bag of red lentils staring at me and I wanted to find something different to do with it!

  2. This seems like it’ll be a good way to use up some of my carrot hoard, although I have red lentils rather than yellow split peas – presumably not that different though?

  3. split peas. that reminds me of the green split pea soup i made last week. with leftover meat and bone from a ham/pork shank. apparently quite traditional hee in ireland. and very delicious indeed. after roasting the schan slowly we had some of the meat for dinner and when it was cooked in the soup the meat was even softer. i also used leftover jelly for some bean stew and still have some meat/fat/bone in the fridge for another soup. 2 euro for the chank and 5 meals for 2.
    the soup was simple. carrots, leaks, a little celery sauteed in some olive oil and butter. cooked peas add as well as bones ectr.
    let it cook long and slow. some potatoes added toward the end.

  4. What put you off making dhal? I make it using the recipe off the side of the packet and it’s a firm favourite in our house. I’m making it this morning, so I’m going to try your soup at the same time. Looking forward to it.

  5. absolutely blown away by you Jack, saving every recipe and inspiration i can, for soon going to live abroad on a very tight budget, Really looking forward to starting from scratch and know that we will survive and eat well. Gracias.

  6. Just put the split peas into soak, really looking forward to the soup tomorrow. Thanks so much for all you hard work and fab recipes 🙂

  7. We’ve got green split peas lurking in the cupboard. do you think they would work as well? It sounds delicious I’m going to try it.

    Also I often use soup broth mix which I get for about 60p a bag. I soak and cook the whole bag then freeze it in 5 portions. The pre-cooked mixture is great for adding to tinned tomatoes, fried onions and garlic for a very simple tasty soup

  8. Great recipe, can also be speeded up if you have a pressure cooker as it removes the need to soak overnight. Got mine from a second hand shop for a tenner, brilliant!

  9. Just made the soup – I added a couple of sticks of celery and 2 sad looking tomatoes (only because they needed using up!). Didn’t have any fresh parsley or coriander but still tastes yummy!

  10. Wasnt expecting much of this to be honest, but it is so easy and so delicious! Kept it thick and blended and added to pasta. I didnt soak my split peas as it only said to soak on the packet, but i did have to cook it for 45 mins. Thank you (great for a slimming world member too!)

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