If you Live in New York (or anywhere in the Northeast, I’m sure), you might be as reluctant as I am some days to say that spring is really here. Least to say, it has been a chilly intro to summer this year, but that’s no reason to not enjoy the bounty of the now-late season. The Aforementioned chill has pushed back the start dates on some of spring’s usual suspects, especially those from local farmers, making it seem like spring has sprung for quite some time. That, at least, is the silver lining to all the gloomy weather that’s been happening this season.
one of the best products of spring is the humble English pea- one of the first veggies that come to mind when you think of the season. Pea soup is so versatile, yet so simple, and a lovely pea soup can really capture the best of spring in a bowl.
Minted English Pea Soup
2 Each White onion, parsnip, and celery stalks, roughly chopped
1 Bu each chives and scallions, each roughly chopped. You can also add some ramp leaves here if you just have them floating around.
4 quarts Veggie stock, either store-bought or homemade
2 bags frozen peas- English or otherwise. If using fresh peas, use about 4 pounds.
2 bunches fresh mint, picked. This is optional or replaceable for another herbaceous element, like parsley or tarragon.
Sweat the onions, parsnip, and celery until starting to soften but no color is attained. Add the veg stock and simmer, about 30 minutes. Add the peas, chives, and scallions, and simmer until the color brightens, just a couple minutes. Blend with mint leaves, and either cool immediately or serve to maintain the bright green color. Season to taste.
This soup can be served hot or cold, garnished or not. If garnishes are added, it is lovely with fresh peas and preserved lemon slices, either homemade (more on that later!) or store–bought.