A pinch and a punch for the first of the month. February means back to school or back to work; time for new routines and new challenges. But the weather does not always co-operate with what should be an industrious time of year. Right now it is classic February weather in Sydney: very hot and sticky, the sort of weather that makes you breathless because the air is so heavy. I remember February days when I was in kindergarten being told to lie down on the cool tiled floor because that was the only bearable place to be on such hot days. Our teachers would read stories or play us records while we just lay flat on the cold tiles for what seemed like hours at a time. Heaven.
So, with weather like this, indulge me with another cold soup. This week it is chilled pea and mint, garnished with prawns to make it all a bit more interesting. I found it on the Gourmet Traveller website, having seen something similar in one of my food magazines (possibly Gourmet) and then losing it. This soup is filling enough to be a light supper on its own, and is dead easy to make: water, peas, a little garlic, shallots (or onion would be fine too) and some mint. Plonk a prawn on top, then enjoy before you go back and lie on the tiles some more.
The original recipe suggests straining the soup after blending but on a day like this, that was one step too far. I am sending this over to Deb at Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper Sunday. There is quite a collection of people starting to meet in her kitchen every Sunday (US time), so go take a look! And one final note, styling for this photo was by the elder darling daughter.
adapted from Gourmet Traveller website1 tbsp olive oil
3 golden shallots, finely chopped (use 1/2 a brown onion if you don't have shallots)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
600 gm frozen peas, defrosted
1 cup (loosely packed) mint leaves
1/3 cup yoghurt (the original recipe calls for creme fraiche but I did not have any)
12 small green prawns, peeled, cleaned and halved lengthways
Heat oil in a saucepan, add shallot and garlic, cook over medium heat until soft (2-3 minutes). Add 500ml water, bring to boil, add peas and mint, remove from heat. Add yoghurt. Blend with a hand-held blender until smooth. Season to taste, refrigerate until chilled (1-1½ hours).
Meanwhile, bring a saucepan of salted water to boil, add prawns and cook until pink (2-3 minutes). Transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of iced water, drain and set aside. Check soup seasoning. Pour soup into bowls, top with prawns and serve.