Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Fresh Pea & Leek Soup!

so i am aware that it is summer and it may not be the best time for soup...but i mean, come on! you will be eating it in your air conditioned homes, not out in the blistering get over it and make some soup already! OR you can also eat this recipe cold for you anti-soup-in-the-summer people!! anyway, my sister was in town last weekend and i wanted to cook her something delish and easy (always the key) that wouldnt take all day, so i decided on some PEA SOUP! ok, i hate pea soup...for the record. but this particular pea soup has NO gross ham bone in it and doesnt taste sick, it tastes really fresh and yum! i found it a few months ago when i was watching the food network. its a recipe from the Barefoot Contessa....fiiine, some people think shes not the coolest of the food network chefs...but I think shes cute and she def makes some of the best and easiest recipes of the bunch!! you can try it and see what you think!! here it is:

Fresh Pea & Leek Soup
serves 6

2 10-ounce bags of frozen peas
4 c. really good vegetable stock (you can use chicken, but i dont eat meat!)
2 leeks chopped finely--only use white and light green parts
1 c. onion chopped finely
2 tbls. butter (can use olive oil, but come on..its only a little butta and its betta!)
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
optional: tofutti sour cream (as usual reg sour cream is fine) and chives as garnish

immersion blender (if you dont have this, you can use any kind of blender, but a blender is a must bc this is a purée)
large pot
cutting board
spatula or something to stir

1. clean and chop leeks. leeks are sandy little suckers, so you def want to clean it well or you will be chewing on sand while enjoying your soup. to clean: cut off the top leafy part so that you only have the long white and light green part left. then cut the leek lengthwise almost all the way through. spread it out with your hands and run it under the faucet while separating each little fold to wash out the sand. shake it dry or pat it dry with a towel. now return the leek to the cutting board and cut lengthwise into fourths then lay flat and finely chop (i like things finely chopped because im a little OCD and think they cook faster and more evenly that way...but bc it will be puréed, it doesnt have to be perfect!)
2. chop onion (same chopping rules apply)
3. add the butter to a large pot and let it melt over medium heat
4. once butter is melted, add leeks and onions and let them sauté until soft (but not brown). stir occasionally
5. once leeks and onions are soft, add vegetable stock. turn up the heat and bring to a boil.
6. add bags of peas, stir, and let boil until peas are soft (takes about 4-6 mins--taste one and when tender, take off heat)
7. in the last minute or so, add the salt and pepper and stir
8. remove soup from heat and once its cooled a little, purée with the immersion blender (or put it into your blender to purée). be careful bc it may splash a bit and the soup is hot!!
9. when the soup looks very smooth, pour into bowls and garnish with a dollop of tofutti sour cream and a few chives so it looks really fancy and serve. (again, you can also eat this soup cold!)

that will do it! this has become one of my "go-to" soups because its so fast and easy and it tastes so great!! happy cooking :)