Pea and Leek Soup (Hortosoupa)

Amy Riolo’s Quinoa, Arugula, and Fig Salad
March 22, 2016
Lentil Salad with Oranges
April 11, 2016

Serves 8 to 10

One of my springtime favorites, this pea and leek soup is bursting with vegetables and full of flavor. If you like, finish it with a touch of tangy Greek yogurt. Served hot or cold, it never fails to put a smile on my face and a “spring” in my step!

pea-and-leek-soup

Ingredients:

2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts only (about 2 leeks)
1 cup chopped yellow onion
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 cups vegetable stock
5 cups shelled fresh peas or two 10-ounce packages frozen peas
2/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (no stems)
½ cup 2% plain Greek yogurt (see Cook’s note)
½ cup chopped fresh chives

Method:

  1. Heat a large saucepan over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until very hot. Add the leeks and onion to the pan and cook over medium heat until the onions are translucent and softened, 5 to 10 minutes. About halfway through the cooking, sprinkle the vegetables with salt to draw out the moisture. (Drawing out the moisture helps reduce the cooking time.)
  2. Pour in the vegetable stock, increase the heat to medium-high, and bring the soup to a boil. Stir in the peas and cook until the peas are tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat, stir in the mint, and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Using a blender set on low speed, puree the soup in batches, blending about 1 cup at a time, and transferring to a large bowl as you work. Whisk in the yogurt, chives, and additional salt and pepper, if desired.
  4. To serve the soup hot, reheat it over high heat, stirring to prevent sticking. To serve the soup cold, refrigerate, tightly covered, until it is well chilled.

Cook’s note: As an alternative to adding the Greek yogurt to the soup, you may serve it on the side as a garnish or omit it entirely for a vegan soup.