(Frozen) spring pea and basil soup

Bold statement time: I think springtime in the Netherlands is probably in the top three most beautiful spring seasons anywhere. (When it’s not raining 😛 ) To be fair, I’ve seen merely a fraction of this incredible world of ours, and I am also most definitely biased seeing as I live here and everything. Nonetheless! Spring in the Netherlands is just so delightful. The terraces are bustling, the canals are sparkling, the blossom and crocuses are out, and everyone just seems to be breathing collective sighs of contentment.

With the official start of spring fast approaching, I thought I’d get a head start and share this super easy peasy spring pea and basil soup, starring… frozen peas. Unapologetically, I might add!

This recipe for spring pea and basil soup takes less than 20 minutes to prepare and stars the humble frozen pea.

This soup is so simple and easy to make that I won’t bang on about it here. Instead, let’s get pumped for spring, shall we?! (Apologies to my lovely Southern Hemisphere dwellers out there!) In no particular order, here are just some of the things I love about this fine season in NL!

1) Over the years it’s become a tradition for my mom to come visit around Easter! (This one is in fact in an obviously particular order!)
2) Whoever is in charge of the canals in Utrecht is doing a spectacular job. Seriously. Well done sir/madam. Every time I circle the city I come across new patches of bright little flowers! (If you follow me on Snapchat there’s a 100% chance you’ve seen them too 😛 )
3) The terraces! If you’ve been to NL, then you know what I’m talking about. The Dutch love the sun and they’ll set up camp outside as soon as there’s the merest hint of a ray of sun – and if it’s cold, they’ll just bundle up with blankets and get on with their sun worship.
4) The smell around here is hilariously manure-y, but in a weirdly good way. I think the fact that I’ve come to like this scent shows you how long I’ve been living here…
5) It’s food truck festival season!

This recipe for spring pea and basil soup takes less than 20 minutes to prepare and stars the humble frozen pea.

6) Gone are the days of it being dark at 4! YESSSSS.
7) For some reason it always seems appropriate to treat myself to all manner of sweets when it’s mild & sunny out. Like I have to celebrate the occasion or something. Macarons (from THIS PLACE especially!), stroopwafels, poffertjes… Anyone else?
8) If you take the train anytime in the coming weeks, you may see brightly coloured fields chock full of TULIPS! And if you’re really into it, then there’s also a flower parade every year (yes really).
9) Picnics. Enough said.
10) Bike rides. This one is controversial… you see, I don’t own a bicycle (I know, shock horror!) and I would much prefer to walk or take public transit to get to my destination rather than rely on a bike. Whenever I tell anyone that I can literally see them re-evaluate our friendship/acquaintance 😛 BUT! Pieter has been exploring the areas surrounding Utrecht on his bike lately, and did you know that there are like 17,000 forts in this area??! (Not really but several!) Not to mention Roman ruins??! So I’m thinking I’ll finally crack… if so, I promise to take you guys along on Snapchat!

And on that note, I’ll leave you with this recipe. Happy Tuesday everyone, and hope your week is off to an excellent start! xx

(Frozen) spring pea and basil soup

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4-6 bowls

(Frozen) spring pea and basil soup

Ingredients

1 leek, white & light green parts only, halved length-wise and thinly sliced
2 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
5 cups frozen peas
5 cups vegetable stock
2 big handfuls fresh basil (about 1.5 cups, lightly packed)
salt & pepper
Greek yoghurt, for serving

Instructions

1. Warm up the oil and butter over a medium heat in a big soup pan. Add the onion and leek, and allow to cook until softened and translucent, about 7-10 minutes.
2. Throw in the peas, vegetable stock, and salt & pepper, then cover and bring to a simmer.
3. Once simmering, allow to cook 3-4 minutes, then remove from the heat and add the basil.
4. Blend it up! I use a hand blender, but if you have a regular blender, then work in small batches and allow to cool slightly before you begin (safety first!).
5. At this point, I like the strain the soup because I'm not too keen on the texture of the chunky pea 'skins', which don't seem to completely go away no matter how long I blend for. Your call, so if you don't mind it, then the soup is ready to serve!
6. Serve up with a sprinkle of extra basil leaves, if you please, and a big scoop of Greek yoghurt. Enjoy!

Notes

I don't bother to thaw my peas, quite frankly. I take them out of the freezer before I start chopping the leek and onion, but that's the extent of it, and it works just fine :)

http://feastwithsophie.com/index.php/2016/03/15/frozen-spring-pea-and-basil-soup/