Minted pea soup
Fabulous taste and hugely nutritious.
Green peas are one of the most nutritious leguminous vegetables rich in nutrients, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.
I love pea soup and my grandmothers pea and ham soup recipe as a child was just the best. I would rush round there on a Friday after school for a steaming hot bowl of pure heaven. I’m sure my love of peas comes from then.
Today I have been walking around my vegetable patch and collecting fresh peas for this recipe. Hmmm very tasty little treat straight from the pod while admiring my other produce. I usually use dried peas but today I can enjoy fresh straight from the garden. Just amazing, bursting with flavour and amazing colour- homegrown and organic, whats not to like! I have also collected a large bunch of fresh mint. However on my return to the kitchen there were not many peas left ….ooops, they are so delicious raw. So back to my original recipe an adaptation of Nana Ruby’s recipe without the ham hock.
When fresh peas are not available dried peas are the perfect choice as they are available any time of the year.
Not only is it said that peas help lower cholesterol, they are also of special benefit in managing blood-sugar disorders as they are high in fibre content helping prevent blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after eating. If you have diabetes, legumes like peas can really help towards you balancing blood sugar levels while providing steady, slow-burning energy.Dried peas also provide important minerals, B-vitamins, and protein—all with virtually no fat.
Mint contains a number of vitamins and minerals. Mint is rich in Vitamins A and C and also contains smaller amounts of Vitamin B2 It is also said to relieve symptoms of indigestion, heartburn and irritable bowel syndrome by relaxing the muscles in and around the intestine and also act as a powerful antioxidant.
Well that’s some facts but to be honest I just love the taste . So versatile. This soup can be made with fresh peas and during the summer when they are in season and great when you want a light fresh soup which is also delicious served cold with fresh mint leaves- fresh peas are just perfect. That’s if you don’t eat them all before you start to cook!
I love the comfort and robustness of using dried slit peas. A beautiful nurturing comfort food for any day, hot or cold.
When I make this soup I always make a large batch which lasts a couple of days for all the family. It does tend to disappear quickly as taken to work and college in flasks and on trips to the beach in winter when walking the dogs for a scrummy energy boosting snack. So I use a full 500g packet of dried split peas, however use as little or as much as you need. As long as the peas are covered with water, but not too much there is really little need for measuring the amounts. Its also great for freezing.
dried green or yellow split peas ( yellow peas give a milder flavour)
fresh garden mint leaves- large handful chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1tbs organic apple cider vinegar plus some to serve
Dried split peas need soaking before cooking.- cover split peas in cold water and soak for 8-12 hours.
Rinse thoroughly and place in a large saucepan and cover with water. Boil for ten minutes then turn down and simmer for 40 minutes until tender.
In the first ten- fifteen minutes you can often get a scum appear on the top just skim this off with a spoon and discard. If the water gets low just top up with boiled water so it doesn’t simmer dry. Once the peas are soft add a large handful of chopped fresh mint along with salt and pepper to taste and apple cider vinegar. Simmer for a further 5 minutes. Taste and if you want to add more mint, this is the time to do it. I like a lot of mint but the depth of flavour is purely up to what you prefer. Once cooled a little, use a stick blender to blitz the soup to the texture you desire. I like mine rustic and textured.
Serve with a sprig of fresh garden mint and a dash of organic cider vinegar and crusty gluten free bread. Although I do love this soup served with corn bread.
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