Pea and Mint Soup

There are few combinations so sublime as peas and mint. Garnished with a blob of cream, this is a classic.

  • Preparation time: 40 minutes
  • Cooking time: 15 minutes
  • Total time: 55 minutes 55 minutes

Serves: 4, as a starter

Ingredients

  • Knob of butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 fat shallots, chopped
  • 1 stem celery, finely chopped
  • 600ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • 400g fresh peas (1kg in pods)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ½ x 20g pack mint, leaves only, roughly chopped
  • 4 tbsp crème fraîche, thick double cream or low-fat yogurt, to serve

Method

  1. Melt the butter with the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the shallots and celery, season, cover and sweat very gently, without colouring, for 15 minutes or until completely soft.
  2. Add the stock and bring to a gentle simmer, then add the peas and simmer for 10 minutes until the peas are soft. Remove from the heat, add the chopped mint, and purée. Push through a sieve if you want a very smooth finish. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve in small bowls, hot or chilled, garnished with a swirl of cream or yogurt, a sprig of mint and lots of black pepper, accompanied by a few curls of melba toast.