Cuban Split Pea Soup recipe - Sopa de Chicharos Cubanos
This soup is great comfort food! Instead of ham,
many Cubans use Spanish-style chorizo (but not the Mexican kind made
with chile powder). The most popular brand of chorizo used for this
soup is Lugareño, named after a small
town in Camagüey, Cuba. A master sausage maker from Spain settled
there in the 1920's, bringing family recipes with him. He
eventually moved his family to Miami, where Lugareño remains the
most popular chorizo. It's in Florida stores but also online at the
Cuban Food Market.
6 cups of water
1 pound dried green split peas
1 lb ham or Spanish chorizo
1 large potato
5 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Rinse the split peas well, then drain and set aside. Dice
the ham or chorizo into half-inch cubes. Wash, peel and dice the potato into
Add a splash of olive oil to a large pot over medium-high
heat. As the oil heats, smash the garlic cloves or crush them using a garlic
press. Add the garlic to oil, and stir gently for one minute.
Immediately add the ham or chorizo, diced potato, split
peas, oregano and cumin. Add seven cups of water, and bring to a boil over high
heat, stirring occasionally. Once the soup comes to a boil, reduce cooking heat
to low. Simmer uncovered and stir occasionally for about an hour, or until the
peas and potatoes are the desired tenderness. Salt and pepper to taste.
You can reduce the cooking time by soaking the split peas
overnight, and draining them just before use. Soaking the peas in advance will
yield creamier soup. This recipe yields 4-6 servings.
Main Cuban recipe pages:
• soups •