There's a particular magic that springs from the marriage of pea and pig on the stovetop. Every winter, pea and ham soup rockets to the top of our website's most-searched list, but its appeal is nothing new. That pork-and-pulse magic is something that has been understood across many centuries and cultures. A good pea and ham soup can be as simple as split peas simmered with nothing more than a ham bone, or as luxuriant as the emerald version we've shot here. Either way, it's the perfect cure for the winter blues.
Eaten correctly – that is, cradled in your hands – it does double duty, warming you both inside and out. Different versions, [like this Dutch pea and ham soup] (Humble origins aside, and with a plethora of fresh produce at our disposal, it's still one of our all-time favourites. Here we've tarted it up a bit and added some fresh peas (okay, fresh frozen), for their vibrant colour and sweet flavour. The pork hocks give the soup a gelatinous texture and a moreish smokiness – keep the pieces chunky for added texture. We've paired ours with toasted baguette, spread generously with chlorophyll-green herb butter for extra grunt. Dip in and slurp away.