In Berlin, March is still a rather uncomfortable month. There will usually be the one or two odd days when a seemingly docile weather spirit tempts the sun out of its hiding place and mild temperatures make you hit the outdoors with your winter jacket enthusiastically (but often too hastily) left behind. But do not get fooled – winter still reigns and I keep imagining how it chuckles when it takes it all away again.
No worries, I do know this is not really happening…
Anyway, having said enough about the outdoor conditions and ensuing state of mind, it should be rather obvious why I am posting a hearty, rustic, soul-warming eintopf recipe here today. As winter hits us with yet another blast of hail and snow, it is time to drop the sophistication and let thick soups talk… to your winter-tired, shivering core, that is.
Ingredients (serves 3 to 4):
- 400 to 500 grams of fresh pork knuckle
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 celery stalk, diced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 350 grams of dried split peas
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 branches of fresh summer savory
- 3 branches of fresh thyme
- 100 ml of calvados
- 400 ml of chicken stock
- 400 ml of water
- freshly ground black pepper, salt
- For decoration: fresh chopped parsley
- Heat up the butter and olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the carrots, celery and onion. Let roast for approximately 10 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Add the pork knuckle. Cover with a lid and continue roasting on low heat for approximately 10 minutes, stir every now and then and turn the pork knuckle until browned from all sides.
- Add the split peas. Make a bouquet garni from the thyme and savory and add it and the bay leave. Cover again and roast for another 5 to 10 minutes.
- Deglaze with the calvados. Let reduce a bit, then add the stock and the water, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and some freshly ground pepper.
- Bring to the boil, then cover and let simmer on low heat for approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Add some more water if required.
- Remove the bouquet garni and the bay leave. Outside the pot, pick the meat off the bone of the pork knuckle, discarding skin, fat and bone (add any marrow to the soup, though). Roughly cut / tear the meat into smaller pieces if required. The meat should be very soft by now and more or less fall off the bone on its own.
- Add the meat to the soup again and warm through properly before serving. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste and decorate with a sprinkle of parsley. Enjoy the warmth! 🙂