Pea & Mint Soup

2 lb (900 g) fresh peas, shelled (weight after shelling is approximately 11 oz/315 g)
freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly milled black pepper
2 oz (50 g) butter
4 spring onions, finely chopped
4 lettuce leaves, finely chopped
1 rasher unsmoked bacon, derinded and finely chopped
2 oz (50 g) fresh young leaf spinach
1 teaspoon caster sugar
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
1-2 tablespoons crème fraîche

First of all, in a large saucepan melt the butter and gently saute the chopped spring onions, lettuce, bacon and spinach for about 5 minutes, then add the peas and some salt and stir everything together.
Then pour in 1¼ pints (725 ml) boiling water from the kettle. Next, add the sugar, put on a lid and let the peas simmer gently for 10-15 minutes, or until they are soft. Now allow the soup to cool a little, then whiz it to a purée in batches in a blender until smooth. You'll find it helpful to have a bowl handy to put the first batch in.
Taste and season with more salt (if it needs it) and freshly milled black pepper, then gently reheat. Stir the mint into the soup and serve in hot bowls, garnishing each one with a teaspoon of crème fraîche and a little freshly grated nutmeg just before serving.

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