white pepper split-pea soup: not only for throwing.

I love split-pea soup. There, I've said it. I know that, by making this statement, I've automatically been relegated to the ranks of food-throwing babies or toothless elderly. But wait, the soup that I love isn't the gelatinous mass which looks like it could become the new Blob and is served to make people even sicker in the hospital, but rather is a lightly spiced, rich soup which exudes comfort and happiness. 
Pea soup has its origins in the ancients. Romans and Greeks were enjoying this long before the art directors on The Exorcist used it for . . . well, let's just say a representation of being sick.
As I've said before, I often think that recipes historically considered peasant fare are some of the most comforting and flavorful. I was able to sit down, work on my quilt, and eat soup. My soul could not be more content (well, a little bit more, if I wasn't feeling so under the weather!). And I believe it was the sustenance of the soup, and Planet Earth with a bit of Curb thrown in, which enabled me to finish the top of my quilt!
Cheap, full of protein, fibre, feel-good tryptophan, and magnesium, split-pea soup is a delightful thing to hunker down with in your living room, with an episode of Planet Earth (yes, I am that geeky) or a good book. But please resist the childish urge to throw a spoonful at anyone who enters the room.
White Pepper Split-Pea Soup
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3 bay leaves
1 tsp. dried thyme
3 tsp. white pepper
3 small racks of pork riblets
4 c. sodium-reduced chicken stock
2 c. dry green or yellow split_peas
1 small sweet potato, peeled and chopped
salt, to taste

1. Pour the olive oil into a large soup pot and place it on the stove at medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and fry them until brown - about 3-5 minutes.

2. Add the rest of the ingredients and reduce the heat to medium. Let the soup simmer for about 2 hours, or until the peas have become soft.

3. Remove the pork riblets and set them aside to cook. Meanwhile, blend half of the soup and add it back into the pot - if you want no texture whatsoever then just blend all of it.

4. Take the meat off the riblets and cut it into small chunks. Add them back to the soup.

5. Pray. Eat. Enjoy. Remember being a kid again while suppressing the urge to throw your food.