1 pound dried split peas
2 ham shanks (or 1 ham hock and 1 pound of diced ham)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped yellow onions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons thyme
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
8 cups water
Cover with water (2 inches) and soak peas 8 hours or overnight in large pot. Drain peas and set aside.
In large pot over medium heat melt butter. Add onions and cook stirring frequently until nearly translucent. Add carrots and celery and cook until soft (about 3 minutes). Add garlic and cook stirring for 1 minute.
Add ham shank and ham and cook stirring until ham begins to brown. Add drained peas, salt pepper, pepper flakes. Add 8 cups of water, bay leaf and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium low heat until peas are tender. (1-1/2 hours). Add more water as needed.
Remove bay leaf and discard. Remove shanks, separate meat from bone, dice ham, discard bone and return ham to pot.
Don’t throw that turkey carcas into the trash; put it into a large pot filled about half-way with water, on the stove, bring it to a boil and simmer for about 5 hours. Add water if necessary, so that you end up with about 1/3 of the pot being turkey broth when the bird remnants are removed.
Strain the broth and sort the shredded meat from any remaining small bones. Toss all of the bones and save the meat; set meat aside.
Return the (strained) broth to the pot; bring broth back to a simmer. Chop and add vegetables to taste, such as:
– 1 medium yellow onion, cut to about 1″ squares;
– 6 – 8 medium carrots, sliced;
– 10 celery stalks cut to about 3/4″; okay to include some leaves;
– mild small garlic; slice cloves to about 1/4″ size;
– 1 jalapeno pepper; remove seeds; cut to about 1/4″ squares.
Simmer all for about 15 minutes.
Add 1/2 cup to 1 cup of pasta (e.g. small rigatoni);
Add pepper and salt to taste;
Simmer all for an additional 15 minutes.
Return turkey to the pot. Add cilantro (2 teaspoons, chopped).
Let sit for 10 – 15 minutes; serve and eat.
Cut meat (pronghorn, deer, elk , or beef round steak) into thin cross-grain slices. To do this, lay a piece of meat (being partially frozen works easier) flat on a cutting board and press down with the free hand, while making thin angled slices across the grain (about ¼ to 1/8 inch thick.)
Heat a cast-iron skillet to medium or medium-high heat, add some butter, and place a layer of the slices into the skillet. Next, add a little salt and generous pepper on each side as the pieces are cooking. As the meat browns well, flip the pieces, pepper again, and add a bit more butter. (Warning: If you set off the smoke detector, you are doing it right, as butter and cast iron always seem to make smoke.)
When the first layer is done, remove the slices to a warming pan, which contains just a thin layer of water. Repeat the process with the next layer until you have cooked all the meat.
After about two rounds in the pan, turn up the heat a bit and pour in some tea (yes, just plain black tea or even coffee,) add pepper and let simmer, scraping the drippings around. Then pour this “au jus” into the warming pan with the steak. Turn down the heat before starting the next round of meat (if there is more to cook.)
Serve with sautéed (sherry and butter) mushrooms. You may want to serve it in a shallow bowl/plate so that the au jus is contained.
Paralegal (and huntress)