I teach this recipe in our Dublin Cooking Classes and it can be adapted in so many ways. Garden peas are perfect in this recipe but you can also use petit pois, or fresh peas in summer. You'll never be stuck in the kitchen with a bag of peas in the freezer. Throw them into fish pies, kedgeree, stir-fries, risotto and even oriental salads. Tossed in butter with frozen sweetcorn, they make a great kid friendly side dish! I love to use homemade chicken stock in this recipe, which gives it a heartier flavour but a good quality vegetable stock will keep all the vegetarians happy. While, it is a simple soup recipe, the addition of tarragon and chilli elevate it to dinner party standard when you include the attractive garnish. It was a great success, at a charity Pop Up restaurant we hosted in the cookery school where our chefs added a cappuccino style froth, crispy breadcrumbs and pea shoots.
Unless you grow your own, you’re unlikely to come across fresh peas as only 5% of garden peas grown commercially are sold fresh - the rest are picked and frozen within a matter of hours retaining all their nutritional benefits. Whilst peas may not seem very exotic or trendy, they actually count as our very own native superfood, packed with vitamins and minerals. They provide good to very good amounts of vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre and protein. Consuming peas with dairy, like the parmesan cheese in this recipe, helps strengthen bones and protect you from osteoporosis – particularly important if you’re female, classed as elderly or both. Additionally, green peas supply a good level of folic acid, which helps ward off certain metabolic by-products associated with problematic bone formation. So they’re an all round key crop for a strong skeleton.
You'll never be stuck for a quick midweek supper or lunch with this simple soup recipe. Coriander herb can be used instead of tarragon leaves.
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