On a cutting board, place the loaf of bread on its side and slice off the top portion. Using a small knife, cut around the inside of the bread, being careful not to cut through the sides, and scoop out the center of the roll. Save this for dipping later on or use for bread crumbs.
In a large soup pot, combine the olive oil, onions, carrots, and celery, and cook 5 minutes over medium heat until onions are translucent.
Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes.
Add the split peas, thyme, salt, pepper, tumeric, and red pepper flakes, and stir until well combined.
Add the vegetable stock and bay leaves, cover with a lid and cook for 40 minutes.
Add potatoes, then cover and cook 20 more minutes.
Remove bay leaves and serve soup in your bread bowl.