A wonderful, luminous-green soup. I love the colour of this soup, it reminds me of the rolling lush green landscapes. Fields of grass, for as far as the eye can see. The green that is after the rain, fresh and vibrant. The colour of warmth and comfort.
I first saw the picture of the soup on Yotam Ottolenghi’s website Pea and Leek soup. The green colour leaped at me from the picture and was imprinted on my mind. I was very much fascinated by its rich look.
To some of you it may come as a surprise that I had never eaten a leek before. I was unsure of its taste and hence skipped many recipes that required leeks. However this soup stayed in my thoughts. Often when I went back to the site for recipe inspirations I admired it. I thought to myself another day when I’m feeling more adventurous I will make this soup.
Finally it was just the right day to make this soup. With some friends coming over for dinner I felt this would be the perfect starter to serve with some home made multigrain bread. With the 6 of us, we loved every bite of this soup. We decided this was our favourite soup from now on. The mild sweetness coupled with the flavoursome peas it was a hearty meal. Just the perfect thing to end a day with.
Leeks, like garlic and onions, belong to a vegetable family called the Allium vegetables. However Leeks are sweet and pleasant in taste when compared to garlic and onions. Leeks contain many of the same beneficial compounds in it making it a “Super food”. It is anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal and helps to reduce cholesterol. In addition to other vitamins it can be a major source of vitamin K and vitamin A in your diet.
So if you haven’t tried leeks before, or if they are regular part of your diet try this recipe and you will definitely enjoy it. It may just become your next favourite soup. This is my version of the recipe and is different from the one on the website.
Pea and leek soup
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 3 leeks, trimmed and finely sliced
- 2 onions, peeled and finely sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced
- 2 sticks celery, finely sliced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp white pepper
- 800g podded peas
- 2 vegetable cubes
- 1 litre water
- 4 heaped tsp Greek yoghurt, to serve
Heat the oil in a large pot, add the leeks, shallots, garlic, celery, bay leaves, vegetable cubes and white pepper.
Reduce the heat and sauté over a low flame for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. This allows the natural sweetness of the vegetables to come out. Keep flame Low and do not let the vegetables get a brown colour.
Add the peas and water, bring to a gentle boil and cook for five to eight minutes, until peas are soft. I used frozen peas, you may use fresh if readily available.
Remove from the heat, discard the bay leaves, and use a hand blender to process the soup. Take your time to blend you want a well blended soup.
Transfer the soup to a sieve, use the back of a ladle spoon to press the vegetables through the sieve. This will take some effort as pea skins don’t blend too well. Keep rubbing till all the liquid has passed through and there is dry pulp in sieve.
Transfer the soup to a clean pot and reheat gently. Taste and adjust for the salt.
To serve, pour the soup into serving bowls and finish with a dollop of Greek yoghurt.
If you prefer, skip the passing through the sieve – it will be less smooth, but still delightful and spoonful.