Heat the bacon fat in the Instant Pot using the saute setting (normal). Add the onions, garlic and ginger paste and cook until soft. Then add the ham bone, split peas, chicken stock and curry powder.
Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, and use the quick release to release the remaining pressure.
If you don't have a ham bone, you can use 1-2 cups of diced ham, 8 oz. of crumbled bacon, or some shredded smoked turkey as a substitute.
If you want to make your curry split pea soup heartier, add 2-3 chopped carrots and 1 cup of diced potato.
To make this split pea soup recipe vegan, replace the bacon fat with olive or coconut oil, replace the chicken stock with vegetable stock, and eliminate the smoked meat. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. For this vegan version, I highly recommend adding the carrots and potatoes to make the soup heartier.
To make the soup creamier, add 1/2 cup heavy cream.
If your soup is too thin, mix 2 tsp. of cornstarch with 1 tbsp. of water until a slurry forms. Slowly add it to your soup while stirring until the desired thickness is reached.
To freeze: Place the soup either in individual or one large freezer safe airtight container or freezer bag(s). I prefer to use freezer bags as they take up less space in the freezer. Store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. To reheat, let the soup thaw in the fridge overnight then heat on the stove or in the microwave. If the soup is too thick, add chicken stock to thin it out.