As the Spring temperature took a sudden dip I found myself wanting a warming bowl of soup. Not a thick, stand your spoon up in it, winter vegetable soup but a lighter, fresher one. This Pea & Watercress soup is like Spring in a bowl! Not only is the colour amazing but the flavours are intense too. It may seem like an awful lot of peas, but as well as giving the soup a great flavour they also act as a thickener. The watercress then adds a lovely light peppery flavour on top.
This really is so quick and easy to make and the soup only contains three ingredients! A bowl of this will make a huge boost to your daily vegetable intake, the peas adding a great source of protein and the watercress is packed full of amazing vitamins and minerals. A perfect lunch, starter or pour into a flask for a healthy packed lunch. If you have time then do make the seed topping as it gives a great crunchy contrast. Sprinkle them on top just before serving and if you’ve got any left then store them in an airtight container as they’re great sprinkled over salads. They also add a little protein and are an excellent source of essential minerals and good fats.
4tsp marigold Swiss vegetable bouillon powder (vegan)
680g (1 1/2 lb) frozen peas
salt and pepper
for the topping;
25g pumpkin seeds
25g sunflowers seeds
1tbsp sesame seeds
a little olive oil or lemon infused olive oil
Put the stock in a large saucepan with 1 litre of water and bring to the boil. Add the peas and simmer, covered for 5 mins.
Add the watercress, bring back to the boil and simmer for a further 2 mins.
Remove from the heat and blend in batches until smooth. Return to the pan to warm through. Check the seasoning and add a little salt and pepper if necessary. I found the stock and peppery watercress had seasoned the soup sufficiently.
Meanwhile put the pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds in a small dry frying pan and toast on a medium heat until beginning to brown and pop! Add the sesame seeds and sumac and cook for a further minute, shaking the pan so they don’t burn. Its best not to take your eyes off them at this point!
Serve the soup with the seeds sprinkled over and a few drops of olive oil drizzled on top. If you have lemon infused olive oil, thats even better!
Sumac is a berry thats ground down to give a tangy lemony flavour to dishes and is often used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cookery. Most supermarkets are now stocking it with the dried herbs and spices.