When I was growing up, we only had soup when we were sick. Then, of course, it was chicken soup. Since then, I learned to love simple pureed vegetable based creamy soups. This is one of my all time favorites because it’s simple to make, very versatile and freezes beautifully. Another make-ahead dish.
For this menu, I’m serving it as an appetizer, chilled in espresso cups (available at my Amazon Affiliate Store). They only hold 2-3 ounces, so you’ll see a pitcher of extra soup. My friends feel free to wander into the kitchen in search of seconds. So, I include the pitcher to save them the trip.
It’s a very handy recipe. I have also served this warm, as a first course instead of salad. This makes a large batch intentionally. I pour any extra into ice cube trays, freeze them and when frozen, pop the soup cubes into a ziplock bag and store in the freezer. It’s easy to take out as many cubes as you need, warm it slowly on the stovetop and enjoy homemade soup.
Don’t add the heavy cream, creme fraiche or other garnish until serving. These really are optional. In fact they weren’t included for this party and still the soup was delicious.
COLD MINTED PEA SOUP
EVENT: Summer Solstice
SERVES: Yields Approximately 2 1/2 Quarts
4 cups chopped onions
4 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
32 oz. chicken or vegetable stock *
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
2 16-oz bags frozen sweet peas
1 6-oz bag fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped *
Juice 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4-1/2 cup heavy cream or creme fraiche (optional)
Mint or chives for garnish (optional)
- In a large stock pot, over medium heat, cook the onions in oil or butter stirring occasionally until soft and translucent, approximately 15-20 minutes.
Add 32 oz. of stock and bring to gentle boil.
Add frozen peas and mint. Cook just a few minutes, no longer! Peas cook very quickly.
Add spinach and stir.
Remove pot from heat and allow to cool thoroughly.
Puree in batches either in blender, food processor or Vitamix machine. If using a Vitamix machine, the soup will be smoother. If using a blender or food processor, you should process it and then strain it through a fine metal strainer into bowl. Process the remaining solids adding a bit of liquid, if needed, a second time for a smoother soup.
Add salt and pepper to taste. Add fresh lemon juice.
Chill overnight or put in ice-cube trays and freeze as cubes. Thaw completely before
OPTIONAL: Before serving, stir in 1/4-1/2 cup heavy cream or a dollop of cream fraiche.
Keep cold until ready to serve. Fill each bowl or cup and garnish with a sprig of mint or fresh chives.
* A NOTES: I buy fresh spinach and the organic chicken stock at Costco.