Cold Pea Soup with Lemon, Basil, and Ginger
Makes 2-3 Servings
I made this soup for the first time a few weeks ago after a long day of fried food and outdoor activity. I was ready to hunker down for a night home alone and, too tired to even lift a spoon to my mouth, was wishing there was some way to magically inject some green into my system. The soup (out of a mug) was a delicious solution. The next afternoon I went to finish off the remaining bowl and, as I was about to put it in the microwave, I snuck a spoonful. The lemon, ginger, and herbs were so flavorful and refreshing cold, I ending up polishing off the remaining spoonfuls while standing in the kitchen. This makes a great summer soup served chilled, especially on a sunny afternoon.
2 large shallots, coarsely chopped
1 clove garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp fresh, peeled ginger, coarsely chopped
10oz frozen peas
3/4 quart chicken stock (or veggie)
1 tsp salt
Cayenne pepper to taste
¼ cup coarsely chopped basil leaves (plus some extra for garnish)
½ lemon, juiced
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a stockpot over a medium-high flame. Sautee the shallots, garlic, and ginger until the translucent and fragrant. Add the peas and stock, season with salt and a few dashes of cayenne pepper, and bring to a rolling boil. Simmer for 5 minutes, then turn off the heat, and add the basil.
Puree the soup in a food processor or blender. Taste for seasoning, and add more cayenne if you want a kick. Cool in the freezer or refrigerator. Before serving, add the lemon juice. If you add it too early, it will cause the basil to brown and your soup will look less appetizing, if just as delicious.
If serving to a fancier crowd, pass the soup through a strainer. If you puree well enough, this will be mostly unncessary.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream or crème fraiche mixed with a little basil.