Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Easy Yellow Split Pea Soup- Iraqi style

We have been enjoying so many of the foods prepared by an Iraqi family whom we have had the privilege of getting to know lately. Their family usually breaks their fast each evening during Ramadan by eating a date, then they proceed to a soup- often a lentil soup. My friend's version is often made with very tiny vermicelli pieces. Although they typically use red lentils, which are so good, I had some yellow split peas that I was wanting to use. I like the creaminess that comes with using split peas. Even though they eat this as a starter, I love this soup as the main course in the cold winter.

Makes about 3-4  servings.
  • 1 large onion, diced small
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced very small (my addition)
  • 1 cup yellow split peas
  • 6 cups water
  • 1-2 cubes chicken bouillon/flavoring
  • Adobo seasoned salt with cumin (or salt) to taste
  • 1/4 tsp black ground pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • approximately 1/2 cup vermicelli, broken into small pieces, approximately 1-2 inches
  • added water as needed

  • Sort the peas- pulling out the things not edible, then rinse well. 
  • In a large pot, sauté onion and garlic in 1-2 Tbsp oil until turning a golden brown. 
  • Add in rinsed peas, water, salt, pepper, parsley and bouillon to a boil and then lower the heat to medium-low. 
  • Continue cooking in this way until split peas are soft and turning creamy- about 1 1/2- 1 3/4 hours, stirring occasionally
  • Add the curry powder and additional water if needed to make it the proper soup consistency. 
  • Add the vermicelli and continue to cook until the pasta is soft. It is then ready to serve.
*This could easily be adapted for the slow cooker- add everything except the curry and vermicelli (the onion/garlic should already be sautéed). Cook on high for 3 1/2 hours. After the soup is creamy, add the curry and vermicelli and allow to cook until the vermicelli is finished- approximately 20 minutes.

This soup is also wonderful over warm rice.


  1. We dined at a strip mall Middle Eastern restaurant in Abilene, Texas owned by an Iraqi man who had cooked for American soldiers during their time in that country. He had crock pots of red lentil soup that tasted divine. No vermicelli, but very close to your recipe. Thank you.

    1. Thanks. I think that maybe some use an Middle Eastern Seven Spice mix but many will substitute curry powder instead. I love the flavor from the spices.


I love to receive feedback . So feel free to leave me a message and make my day! If you have a blog, leave a link so I can stop by your site and leave some comments, too. If you don't have a blog, you can leave a message with your first name and leave the website space empty. Unfortunately, due to excessive spam, I have enabled the word verification in order to leave a message.