I'm not a huge fan of split-pea soup. Even when I ate meat, it wasn't really my thing. But, my wife really enjoys it, so I decided to make it for her. The only rub being we can't use ham.
I started out by browning a whole onion down to nothing, then adding in the split-peas and the water necessary to cook them. After this had laboriously cooked down, I added some Field Roast (a true gift to vegetarians). Cubing the "meat" added just the right amount of taste and texture to the mix. To replace the smokiness that bacon or ham would have added, we used the incredibly useful "Liquid Smoke" that you can pick up at places like Williams Sonoma.
Hard to make look pretty in a picture, but it was a nice hearty soup on a cold night.