Wednesday 18 January 2012

Pea, Mint and Lettuce Soup

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Okay I admit, the words lettuce and soup together might sound strange. For most of us lettuce is there to be eaten raw in salads, but sometimes it actually works really well cooked. You should try it sometime.

This recipe is based on one from an Avoca Cookbook, but I have changed it quite a bit, as I felt the original lacked flavour. Do you sometimes find that you really like the food served in a cafe or restaurant, but then when you buy their cookbook the recipes don't work quite as well?!

If you're Irish or you have been to Ireland you probably know about Avoca. Not the small town in Co. Wicklow, but the shops. They sell nice stuff and most of the stores have a really nice cafe/bistro attached to them. Everything I ate there, especially the soup and cakes I really enjoyed, but I have now tried soup twice from the cookbook I bought and had to doctor both recipes quite a bit to stop them from being bland.

Well the my 'doctored' version not only looked great (that's if you like bright green) it also tasted really good, was pretty quick to make and just hit the right spot on a cold January day.


Pea and Lettuce Soup (serves 4)

50g butter
1tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 baby gem lettuces, core removed and shredded
500g frozen garden peas
750ml good quality vegetable stock (preferably homemade)
salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
150ml creme fraiche
a small bunch of mint, chopped fine

In a heavy based saucepan melt the butter over medium heat togther with the olive oil.

Sautee the onion until soft and translucent stirring regularly. You want to sautee them slowly, as they are not supposed to go crispy and brown.

Add the shredded lettuce and saute for a couple of minutes before adding the peas.

Continue to cook for 5 minutes or so.

Add the stock and bring to a simmer.

Remove from the heat and liquidise with a stick blender or by carefully puring it into a liquidiser.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Return to the heat and warm through.

Remove from the heat before finally stirring in the creme fraiche.

Sprinkle with mint and serve with your favourite crusty bread.



Jan Bennett said...

I don't care if it does sound strange - I love the idea, looks delish!

Lucie said...

Perfect soup for a January day - gorgeous bowl too. x

Unknown said...

the color alone = so gorgeous.

Susan@Holly Grove said...

Looks gorgeous Sylvie, I'm definately going to try this one.

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

It does indeed look good and I love that bowl.

I sometimes use lettuce in soup too, but I haven't used it as a main ingredient yet. I tend to throw it in if I have some left over. just to use it up.