Last night, I sorted, rinsed and set the peas to soak in water with some apple cider vinegar. Most recipes don't call for the peas to be soaked, but the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome*) diet calls for legumes to be soaked. This makes them easier to digest. So I went ahead and soaked them.
In the morning, I rinsed them and put them in a pot with some water and some bone broth. I figured the bone broth would only add to the yumminess, plus I really needed to use it since it'd been sitting in my fridge for too long. So I put some of the gelatinized bone broth in and stuck the rest of the broth in the freezer.
Once the soup was cooking, I waited. And waited. And waited.
Those peas were not getting soft. Peas don't need to cook for that long and I thought these would cook up faster since I had soaked them. Boy, was I wrong. They continued to be crunchy.
So I turned to the internet. I suspected it might be because I soaked them in apple cider vinegar or because I hadn't rinsed the vinegar off well enough. I considered, as this site says, that maybe the peas were old. I thought about the water that I'd used (from reverse osmosis with mineral drops added).
I saw on one site to add some baking soda. So I dumped some in. The soup foamed up quite a bit but then after a while, settled down.
Not too much later, the peas were starting to soften. I ate some. A little later, I ate some more. Definitely softer. Edible.
But...there is that baking soda. Ahem.
I may have added too much.
I was still not sure exactly what the problem was until I read here that hard water may prevent beans from softening up. Bingo! Guess what I had added to the pot that was full of minerals? Bone broth. Remember, bone broth (unlike the meat broth in the photo) is cooked for hours, until the bones actually soften up so that the broth is mineral-rich.
So the baking soda worked, though I should have added less than I did. And next time I know not to add bone broth to the cooking water for pea soup.
If you want to try adding baking soda to cooking pea soup to help it soften up, try 1/8-1/4 teaspoon.
*The book by the same name is by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride
NMlost. "What is wrong with my split pea soup?" https://answers.yahoo.com/question /index?qid=20090108155328AAuhOK1
Ruhlman, Michael. "How to Cook Dried Beans." 2011. http://ruhlman.com/2011/03/how-to-cook-dried-beans/