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Garden Pea Soup with Sourdough Croutons Recipe by Niamh Mannion

Garden Pea Soup with Sourdough Croutons Recipe by Niamh Mannion

This garden pea soup one of my favourite recipes and the fact that it is so easy to make, means that it is even more appealing. You could use freshly podded peas but to be honest, frozen peas are just as good and so convenient. The sourdough croutons add a little bit of texture and along with some peas left whole give the soup substance. This is a wonderful summery soup but the fact that it uses frozen peas means that it can be made at any time of year.

Serves 6

Ingredients:

Sourdough Croutons:

– 250g stale sourdough bread cut into 2cm cubes
– 2 tblsp olive oil
– Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Garden Pea Soup:

– 25g butter
– 1 large onion, chopped
– 1 garlic clove, crushed
– 500ml vegetable stock
– 500g frozen peas
– Large bunch of fresh mint, leaves only roughly torn
– Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

To finish:
– 100g frozen peas
– 50ml double cream or crème fraîche
– Pea shoots for garnish

Garden Pea Soup with Sourdough Croutons Recipe by Niamh Mannion

Method:

Make the Sourdough Croutons:

1. Heat oven to 180C/Fan Oven 160C/Gas mark 4. Put the cubes of bread in a roasting pan and toss in the olive oil. Season well.
2. Place in pre-heated oven for approximately 15 minutes, giving them a toss halfway through, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Make the Garden Pea Soup:

1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan over a moderate heat. Add the onions and crushed garlic and fry gently for about 5 minutes until softened but not coloured.
2. Add the stock and increase the temperature until the stock is boiling. Add the peas and cook for 3-4 minutes until the peas are tender.
3. Remove from the heat. Add the mint and season generously with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
4. Purée the soup in batches by filling a blender/food processor one third full and puréeing until smooth. Pass through a sieve (for a super smooth soup) into a clean saucepan.
5. Check for seasoning and adjust as necessary.

To finish:

1. Add the remaining frozen peas and heat the soup gently over a moderate heat but do not allow to boil or it will lose its lovely green colour.
2. Serve in bowls with a swirl of cream or crème fraîche, some croutons and a few pea shoots

RECIPE BY NIAMH MANNION

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I’m simply someone who loves cooking and experimenting with food and different ingredients. From my early childhood spent in Zambia and Australia before returning home to Ireland I was fascinated with cookbooks and reading recipes. I would spend many hours reading my grandmother’s cookbooks and watching her preparing food in the kitchen.

Although I studied to become a graphic designer and spent a few years working in advertising before then becoming a civil servant, the one thing I always wanted to be was a food writer – sharing my enthusiasm for cooking with others, but I lacked the confidence to do the thing I wanted to do most in case I failed. I finally decided to take a risk and applied for MasterChef Ireland 2014 and was one of the three finalists.

For me, food and cooking is about family, friendship, sharing and conviviality. As a mother of three, I want my children to grow up with a love and appreciation of how lucky we are to live in a country like Ireland with such great produce and so many wonderful food producers. I continue to write and share my enthusiasm for food on my food and recipe blog The game bird Food Chronicles at http://thegamebird.blogspot.ie/

 

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