GREEN SOUP FOR SPRING
Few things say Springtime quite so clearly as basil and green peas. Following on a little from my Winter recipe posts, here is a soup that is perfect for the green season. In fact, I would say that this courgette, pea and basil soup is THE BEST SPRING SOUP EVER!
You can find it in Yotam Ottolenghi’s book SIMPLE and it really is simple, souper simple – and quick – and amazingly green.
Have it cool on a warm spring day or have it hot when the temperature drops – as it still does from time to time. Whatever the temperature, make sure that it is good and green!
“The way to keep a green soup green is to not overcook it. Once you’ve added the peas and basil take it off the heat and blitz it straight away.”
Makes 8 servings
- 1 head of garlic, cloves separated & peeled
- about 6 medium courgette, chopped into 3cm thick slices (about 1.3 kg)
- 1 litre vegetable stock
- 2 cups water
- 500g cups frozen peas
- 50g cups basil leaves
- 200g feta, broken into pieces
- 1 lemon, finely zested
- 2 tsp salt black pepper
NOTE: I find that Ottolenghi is very liberal with oil and salt. I never use the full quantity that he proposes.
- Heat the oil in an extra large saucepan (or dutch oven) on medium-high heat.
- Add the whole garlic cloves & fry for two to three minutes, stirring often, until caramelized & golden.
- Add the courgettes, salt and plenty of pepper, and fry – stirring frequently – for three minutes OR until starting to brown.
- Pour in the stock and 500 ml of cold water. Bring to a boil and cook on a high heat for seven minutes, until the courgette is soft but still bright green.
- Add the peas, stir through for 1 minute only, then add the basil & turn off the heat straight away.
- Using a stick blender (or in a blender) blitz until the soup is smooth and vibrant green.
- Spoon into bowls and top with the feta and lemon zest.
- Finish with a good grind of black pepper and a final drizzle of oil.
- Serves 8
Although ideal for Spring, this greener than green soup is also terrific in Summer. It is delicious when chilled, making it perfect for lunch on a hot day. It’s also very light on the digestion so you can even make a meal of it on those days when the heat takes your appetite away.
The picture used above is borrowed from the Kahakai Kitchen who also offer a rendition of this excellent recipe.