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Fennel Pea Soup

8 c Water
1/2 c Dried split peas
4 c Chopped fennel bulb
1 c Celery chopped
2 tbsp. Shallots, minced
2 tbsp. Chicken stock
1 tbsp. Basil (Fresh) minced
4 med Potatoes, diced
2 c Peas
2 tbsp. Parsley, minced
Fennel Sprigs (Garnish)

Place water, split peas, fennel and celery in a large sauce pan.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 45 minutes.
While the soup simmers, sauté and shallots in the stock in a small
skillet until they are translucent. If using dried basil, stir into
the shallots, then remove from heat. Stir the shallots into the soup
as it simmers. After it has simmered for 1 hour, puree the soup in
batches in a blender. Return the blended soup to the pot. Add the
potatoes and simmer for 15 minutes. Then add the peas and basil
(if using fresh) and simmer until the peas are tender. Stir in the
parsley and remove from the heat.
Garnish with fennel sprigs if desired.


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