This traditional pea soup is the ultimate in Quebec-style comfort food. Look for an unsmoked ham hock in the meat department of your local supermarket. If you can’t find one, a smoked ham hock will work – just reduce the salt in the recipe to 1/4 tsp.
Trim off and discard skin from ham hock; set hock aside.
In large Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat; cook carrots, celery, onion and garlic, stirring occasionally, until softened and golden, about 15 minutes.
Stir in split peas, bay leaves, savory, salt and pepper; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
Stir in 8 cups water; add ham hock. Bring to boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until peas are very soft and soup is thickened, 1-1/2 to 2 hours.
Discard bay leaves. Transfer ham hock to plate; let cool enough to handle. Discarding bone and any fat, dice meat and return to soup; heat through.