Today is a good day. The weather is beautiful. The house is clean. The boys are resting. Dinner is made. And it’s only 3 pm. The day is young!
Did I mention that the house was clean? I mean REALLY CLEAN. Like under the rugs clean. Blinds and windowsills clean. Baseboards and door-jams clean. Today my a-maz-ing husband gave me the gift of time. In spite of my arguing that it wasn’t necessary (I know – no awesome wife awards for the arguing…), he hired a wonderful lady to come help me clean the “extra” things. You see, my house is never really dirty by most standards, but there are those areas that often get ignored. Behind things. Under things. On top of things (I can’t see above 5’4″). And while it doesn’t really bother me to know that there are dust bunnies on top of the kitchen cabinets that I can’t see without a stool, I still know they are there. It seems like I can never get everything done and still be everything I need to be for my family besides. Since I can’t stop the world from spinning, I plug along getting done just what must be done each day – always feeling like there’s more I could have done. I go to bed each night dreaming about all of the things I’ll accomplish the next day and all of the wonderful special moments I’ll spend with the boys and with Steve. But the truth is, too often I let the things-to-be-done come before the special moments. So, today it is time to realize that I actually can’t do everything – but that’s OK. Some things I can let go of and some things I can get a little help with. I can quit dreaming about who I want to be for my kids and my husband and start being that person. God made me to be that person, I just have to act wisely. I can be the mom who makes everything from scratch and has a clean house but still takes the time to go for a walk with the kids, reads them 6 stories instead of 2, and spends a little extra time just being with them. So, to the best husband in the world (go ahead and try to argue, but you won’t win) – Thank You and I Love You. I had an AWESOME day!
Now that we got the mushy stuff out of the way, how about some yummy soup to go along with this crisp, cool fall weather? This Split Pea, Lima Bean, and Mushroom Soup recipe was only slightly adapted from Soups and Stews by Food & Wine Magazine. The more time you have to let it simmer, the richer and deeper the flavors become. I’ve never been a huge fan of split-pea soup, because I always felt it was a little boring by the time you got to the end of an all-green bowl of mush. Adding a little variety with rice, orange split peas, lima beans, and mushrooms makes it more interesting and flavorful.
I used dried shiitake mushrooms in this recipe as I was out of fresh mushrooms, but you could easily substitute any fresh mushroom you have on hand. I would use about 4 small mushrooms, chopped fine, and water-sauteed with the onions and carrots.
Like many of the recipes I use, you’ll notice that there are A LOT of onions. Don’t be shy. Use A LOT of onions. Think of it this way – you can spend money on canned/boxed vegetable broth or you can make broth while you make soup, and then instead of throwing out the onions used to make the broth, you get to eat them. No waste! PLUS…Onions are an especially good addition to foods this time of year as they are full of phytonutrients that provide strong antioxidants as well as antimicrobial properties that assist your body in fighting off germs.
Split peas and lima beans cook quickly and don’t have to be soaked overnight, but cooking them with a bay leaf can help to cut down on potential intestinal discomfort!
Now go mix up some soup, leave it on the stove for a few hours, and enjoy the little blessings in your life!
- 2 tbsp dried shiitake mushrooms
- 1 cup hot water
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 onions, chopped
- 1 tbsp dried parsley
- ¼ tsp dried thyme
- ½ cup orange split peas
- ½ cup green split peas
- ¾ cup lima beans
- ½ cup rice
- 11 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- 2½ tsp sea salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- Soak the dried mushrooms in a small bowl with 1 cup hot water.
- In a large pot, water saute onions and carrots until tender.
- Add seasonings, peas, beans, rice, 11 cups water, and bay leaf.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 2 hours.
- Add salt and pepper when beans and rice are tender.
- Allow to simmer an additional 5-10 minutes to allow salt to permeate.
- Discard the bay leaf and serve.