Chilled English Pea Soup

  • Active Time 20m
  • Total Time 2h 40m

4 Servings

This soup gets all its flavor from the peas. If you can't find really sweet fresh ones, you're better off with frozen baby peas.


  • For the Peas:
  • 3 quarts water
  • Salt
  • 4 pounds fresh peas, shelled (4 cups shelled)
  • For the Soup:
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • For the Croutons:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup cubed bread


Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan. Salt the water, then add the peas and bring the water back to a boil. Cook over moderate heat until very tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the peas, reserving the cooking liquid. Set aside 1/4 cup of peas.

In a food processor, combine the remaining peas with 1/4 cup of the olive oil and 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking liquid and puree until smooth. Work the puree through a fine sieve into a large bowl. Discard the contents of the sieve. Stir in about 4 cups of the cooking liquid and season with salt and pepper; add more cooking liquid if necessary to make a nice, creamy soup. Refrigerate the soup until cold, at least 2 hours.

In a large skillet, melt the butter in the vegetable oil. Add the cubed bread and brown the cubes on all sides over moderately high heat, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain the croutons on paper towels.

Ladle the cold soup into bowls and garnish each with a few of the croutons and reserved peas. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with pepper and serve.

The soup can be prepared through Step 2 and refrigerated for up to 1 day. The croutons can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

1993 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs. This elegant wine, which is made from 100 percent Chardonnay grapes, harmonizes beautifully with the delicate taste of English peas.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.

RecID 3554

nutrition information per serving

588 calories; 25g total fat; 16mg cholesterol; 50mg sodium; 68g carbohydrates; 23g fiber; 25g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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