This chilled soup is light and refreshing, just the thing to enjoy on a hot summer’s evening.
The first full day of summer is upon us, and we are in the middle of a little heat wave. Highs in the 90s, tons of humidity, lots of sun and pop-up thunder showers. I don’t want long periods of time in the kitchen, and I want to eat food that is cold!
When there’s a bounty, indulge!
The shelling English peas are coming fast and furious and that means a fresh soup, a chilled one at that! This soup is all about the peas. I made the stock in the morning, let it cool naturally, and put the soup together in just a few minutes. A nice long chill, and the flavors develop even more.
Of course, if you are having a damp, cold period, you can always heat this up.
Fresh Pea and Coconut Soup
- 1 ½ lbs. shelling peas, save the pods
- 6 cups water
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 large Vidalia onion, save the skins
- 1 fat clove garlic, pressed
- 1 can coconut milk
- Zest and juice of one lime
- Toasted coconut to garnish
- Edible flowers and pea shoots to garnish, optional
Shell the peas, and place the pods in a saucepan. You should have about 2 cups of peas and a very large pile of pods. Set the peas aside for now as you make the stock.
Dice the onion, set aside, and toss any peels and scraps in the pot along with the pods.
Add water to the pea pods pot, along with a little salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover the pan. Let this cook for about 30 minutes, then strain into a quart measuring cup or bowl; you will use 1 quart of the pea stock. If you’re not in a hurry, let this cool to room temperature before straining to extract even more pea flavor.
In a large saucepan, or even the same one you just used, heat the oil and add the onion. Sauté gently until the onion is soft and translucent, stir in the garlic, and continue cooking for about a minute.
Add the pea stock back to the pan and bring mixture back up to a gentle boil. Taste for salt and pepper, you will most definitely need to add more.
Cook for about 10 minutes, then dump in the peas. Keep at a simmer and cook for about five minutes, just until the peas are tender. Remove from heat.
Put it all through a blender or food processor, return to the pan, and add the coconut milk, zest, and juice. Heat gently until everything is married. Correct seasoning.
Refrigerate until well chilled.
To serve, garnish with a bit of toasted coconut and a flower or pea shoot or two!
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