Fresh Pea, Leek, & Mint Soup

March 19, 2010

Fresh Pea, Leek, & Mint Soup

From Soup’s On! which is a collection of soup recipes from various cookbook authors and chefs, here is the perfect recipe to welcome those first glimmers of spring. The recipe was created by Jessica Strand, author of the entertaining books ‘Dinner Parties’ and ‘Intimate Gatherings’. This soup is unusual because it includes Boston lettuce in the soup ingredients.

This recipe makes 4 servings.

Fresh Pea, Leek, and Mint Soup Ingredients:
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
4 medium leeks, white parts only, coarsely chopped
2 small heads Boston lettuce, cored and separated
½ cup coarsely chopped fresh mint, plus 8 fresh mint leaves
5 ½ cups chicken stock or broth
3 cups fresh or frozen peas
1 Meyer lemon, juiced
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
¾ cup crème fraiche

Heat the oil and butter in a stockpot over medium-low heat.
Add the leaks and cook until they are soft, 7 to 10 minutes.
Add the lettuce and chopped mint to the pot and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes, until the leaves are wilted. 
Add the stock and peas. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the flavors have melded, 10 to 12 minutes.
Remove the soup from the stove. Use a hand-held mixer or blender to purée the soup until smooth. If using a standard blender, add the soup in batches.
When the soup is completely puréed, reheat it over low heat.
Add the lemon juice, salt, and pepper to taste and stir to blend.
Ladle the soup into 4 bowls, add a dollop of crème fraiche, and garnish each serving with 2 mint leaves.