Monday, 15 October 2012

Pea and Pistou Soup

Pea and Pistou soup title

OK so, it's getting toward that time of year, where everything is a little colder, the leaves have fallen from the trees, or the ones that are left clinging on are bright red as they anticipate the winter.

I hate it at the moment, night time appears to come twice as fast, it just makes me want to go to sleep, well, either go to sleep or cuddle up with a blanket, with a film on, eating a bowl of soup!

Here's one of the uses I mentioned for my homemade Pistou.

I know green soup is probably not the most attractive colour for a soup, but I quite like it. It has the same appeal to me as guacamole. Plus I love the contrast of the red and the green, I think it would be lovely served on boxing day, or any other day around Christmas time. Truly festive! (I know, too early to be thinking about Christmas!!!!)

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I may have mentioned this before, but I'm a bit of a lover of all things spicy! My all time favourite soup is, well, anything with chili in!

This soup is so simple to make, you can whip up an entire vat full in about ten minutes!

Normally I am totally against frozen veg, when they are frozen, they just seem to lose all of their flavour, but there are two bags of vegetables that are permanent fixtures in my freezer. Peas. and Sweetcorn. (well not just any peas, Petit pois)

Growing up my francophile mother used to refuse to buy any other peas than petit pois, and I think she might have been on to something, because although other varieties work, nothing comes close to the sweetness given off by the petit pois.

Try it, you'll see.

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Serve this soup sprinkled with dried chili flakes, and accompanied with wholemeal flat breads toasted and cut into strips and you will be everyone's favourite person!

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You know what I like: Simple, fast, colourful, tasty, spicy, cheap and makes me forget meat ever existed!

Not too much to ask for is it?!

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   Recipe:


1 Onion
1 tbsp Oil (see Notes)
2 tbsp Pistou
2 cups Frozen Peas (see Notes)
500ml Vegetable Stock (see Notes)
Dried Red Chili Flakes

1. Dice the Onion and sweat in a large pan with the Oil and a few of the Chili Flakes until translucent.
2. Add the Peas and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
3. Pour over the Stock, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
4. Remove from the heat and  either leave to cool slightly before blending, or blend with a stick blender. The soup should be slightly rustic and chunky looking, not a complete puree. 
5. Pour the soup back into the pan and bring back to simmering point, you may need to add more water at this point if the soup is looking a little thick.
6. Stir in the Pistou.
7. Remove from the heat and serve with a few extra Chili Flakes.







   Notes:


I showed you how to make homemade Pistou in my last post, however, if you don't have time to make your own batch (you must be really pressed for time, because it takes 30 seconds!) or you can't find fresh Basil, there are a few brands of really good Pistou, just make sure that they are Vegan friendly, some brands like to add cheese.
The Peas I like to use are Petit pois. Although slightly more expensive than their Garden Pea cousins, they are much, much sweeter. Garden Peas are just as lovely in this recipe though.

   Substitutions:

Oil - I don't like to use too much Olive Oil, so I usually use a little Sunflower Oil, but most oils will work. I wouldn't recommend sesame oil though (partly because it is really strong tasting, and partly because I don't like it much!)
Stock - I like to make my own stock, but there are a few good brands of vegetable stock available, I also don't think it really matters if you buy it in cube form, just go easy on any seasonings you may add however because stock cubes tend to be really salty.

  

   Stay in touch with me, either on twitter or by email! I'll always be ready to talk.


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