Pea Pod Soup with Lemon Crème Fraîche

Notes: If you cannot find crème fraîche, substitute sour cream; omit lemon juice and add 1 more teaspoon lemon peel.

Yield: Makes 2 quarts; 4 to 6 servings
Recipe from Sunset

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Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 250
  • Calories from fat: 43%
  • Protein: 11g
  • Fat: 12g
  • Saturated fat: 7.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 26g
  • Fiber: 2.7g
  • Sodium: 118mg
  • Cholesterol: 27mg

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds fresh peas in the pod
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped shallots
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 quart fat-skimmed chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup basmati rice
  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche (see notes)
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Salt and fresh-ground pepper

Preparation

  1. 1. Rinse peas in pods. Cut off and discard tough ends from pods; pull off and discard strings. Shell peas. Reserve pods; blanch and reserve peas. To blanch fresh peas, bring water to a boil in a large pan, then add peas. Cook just until they start to turn a brighter green, 15 to 30 seconds, then drain immediately. Rinse well under cold running water until cool, then drain again.
  2. 2. In a 4- to 5-quart pan over medium heat, melt butter. When it is foamy, add shallots and stir until limp, about 3 minutes. Add wine, increase heat, and boil, stirring, until about half the liquid has evaporated. Add pea pods, chicken broth, and 3 cups water; lower heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Add rice and cook until pods are tender when pierced, 25 minutes longer.
  3. 3. In a small bowl, stir together crème fraîche, lemon peel, and lemon juice.
  4. 4. Working in small batches, transfer pod mixture to a blender; whirl until nearly smooth. (The tough bits of pea pods may catch on blade; stop motor and remove blender jar to clean blade as needed.) Pour soup through a fine strainer into a 4- to 5-quart pan, pressing on solids to extract liquid; discard solids.
  5. 5. Stir in half the lemon crème fraîche; add salt and pepper to taste. Set over medium heat; stir occasionally until soup is steaming. Add blanched peas. Ladle soup into bowls and top each with lemon crème fraîche.
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