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Frosty Green Pea Soup

Yield Makes 4 servings
I serve this with toasted whole-wheat bread and sliced red-ripe tomatoes. For a smooth consistency, liquefy in a blender instead of pureeing by food processor. Try to find tiny, tender peas; larger ones won't puree smoothly. For richer flavor, use bacon drippings instead of butter. Prep: 10 minutes; Cook: 16 minutes; Chill: 2 hours.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 6 large green onions, trimmed and thinly sliced (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 (16-ounce) bag frozen green peas
  • 3 cups vegetable broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 6 large fresh mint leaves
  • Garnishes: 1/3 cup heavy cream, whisked to the consistency of thin white sauce, and 4 mint sprigs

How to Make It

  1. Heat butter in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat 1 minute. Add green onions and orange zest, and sauté, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Add peas, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook 10 to 15 minutes more or until soft, stirring once or twice. If peas threaten to scorch, add a small amount of vegetable broth, and stir.

  2. Scoop into a blender or food processor, add 1 cup broth and next 4 ingredients, and puree until smooth. Transfer half of mixture to a large nonreactive pitcher.

  3. Add remaining 2 cups broth to pea mixture in blender, and puree at high speed until smooth. Combine with mixture in pitcher, cover, and chill at least 2 hours before serving.

  4. Whisk well or homogenize with a blender, and ladle into chilled soup bowls. Garnish, if desired.

A Love Affair with Southern Cooking