It feels like England today. The fog, spitting rain, and mild temperature has me wanting to curl up with a good book and a cup of tea. The weather, and the English peas that I found at Whole Foods, inspired me to make a soup that could come straight out of a Beatrix Potter book.
I’ve never made pea soup before so I was slightly intimidated when I began planning out my recipe. I remembered eating some at a luncheon several years ago and raving over the delicate mint flavor that was infused throughout it. I couldn’t recall if it had a cream base, but that didn’t really matter because I knew that mine would be made with vegetable broth. Besides, peas are starchy, they would most likely create a thicker texture when pureed.
As I scanned the produce section I decided that shallots, leeks, mint, and peas would be the only solid ingredients in my soup. A wise choice, because this recipe isn’t about a punch of flavor, it’s about whispers. Like spring, it’s soft, gentle, and understated. But don’t let that fool you, they all come together to make an extraordinary spoon, after, spoon, after spoon full of goodness.
My pretty green creation began with the shelling of the peas. If you’ve never had the pleasure of doing this I highly recommend it. If you have kids, put them to work too. It’s actually a really relaxing part of the cooking process. The peas are so beautiful. Really, they are.
After getting the peas ready to go I diced and sautéed the shallot and leek, then I added the veggie broth and water and waited for it to come to a boil, and then I added the peas.
Shocker! The peas talked to me. Seriously, they really did. They squeaked and popped as they began to expand. It was the coolest thing ever. I imagined that I was walking through an English garden and there were little fairies playing hide and seek in the flowers. Don’t judge me because I have a vivid imagination. It keeps life interesting.
Once the peas had softened I added the mint and salt and pureed the peas in the broth. After about three minutes the soup thickened and turned a stunning green.
The first taste didn’t disappoint, it was just like the soup that I remembered. It was a little sweet, a little salty, a little minty, and a lot of yummy. I was so excited to have scored a success on the first try. I didn’t even have to play with the salt balance. It was perfect.
This is definitely on the menu for Easter brunch. I can’t think of starting the meal with anything more appropriate than this soup, and I can’t wait to share it with my loved ones.