I like to cook, but I’m not exactly Nigella and I doubt I’ll ever try out for Master Chef. I enjoy cooking in winter – because I get to stand in front of a warm oven or stove.
Last night I made a pea and mint soup for my family. My gran used to make pea soup for us when I was a child, so I have a soft spot for this soup. Angie, after some initial hesitation, finished her entire bowl. Emmy remained unconvinced that this was actually food and I had to fight to get her to eat just five spoons of it.
What I really like about this recipe is that it’s so easy and super-quick. If you use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock, then it’s also completely vegetarian and a good option for Meatless Mondays. It feeds about 6-8 people, depending on the size of one’s appetite.
2 sticks of celery
2 medium onions
2 cloves of garlic
2 stock cubes (chicken or vegetable)
800g frozen peas
a small bunch of fresh mint
salt and pepper
Peel and slice the carrots. Slice the celery. Peel and chop the onions. Peel and slice the garlic. (Your slicing and chopping technique doesn’t have to be perfect – it’s going to be blended anyway.)
Put a large pot on medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add all the chopped ingredients and mix. Cook for about 10 minutes with the lid slightly askew, stirring occasionally to prevent the vegetables from catching at the bottom of the pot.
Put the stock cubes in a jug and add 1.8 litres of boiling water. Stir until the cubes have dissolved.
The carrots should be soft but still holding their shape, and the onions should be a light golden colour. Add the stock. Then add the peas. Stir everything and bring to the boil.
Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
When the peas have softened, remove the pot from the heat. Season with salt and pepper and add the mint leaves.
Using a hand blender, blend the soup until smooth.
Serve with toasted ciabatta.
What is your favourite soup?