Pea and Tarragon Soup
During a pandemic you you realise how important your freezer is. On your next trip to the supermarket, stock up on a few bags of frozen garden peas and add this recipe into your family meal plan.
Servings Prep Time
4people 15minutes
Cook Time
30minutes
Servings Prep Time
4people 15minutes
Cook Time
30minutes
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. To prepare the garnish, bake the pancetta slices on an oven tray in an oven preheated to 180C for 12-15 mins until crisp.  Whip the cream.
  2. In a heavy based saucepan over a medium heat, melt the butter and oil, add the onion, celery, garlic, season and stirring occasionally until softened, 4-6 minutes before adding the tarragon and chilli, stirring for another 10 seconds.  Stir in the peas, add the stock and sugar, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.  Whizz to a smooth consistency with a handheld stick blender.  Season to taste.
  3. To serve, bring the soup to a boil, stir in the whipped cream at the boiling stage to give it a nice foaming effect.  Serve in warm bowls.  Break the pancetta into crisps and scatter over the soup, garnish with pea shoots from the garden, if you have them!
Recipe Notes

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.

Visit our website to see lots more popular lunch recipes from our Cooking School in Dublin.