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Sweet Pea Soup With Pesto

Back to posting after a lovely week spent away with my family. I am so thankful for the ability to safely reunite after so many long and challenging months apart. If you have been separated from loved ones, I hope you have had some special time together recently as well.

Now let’s talk about soup. I am a total vegetable snob, there, I’ve said it. Living in California has completely spoiled me with the quality and availability of fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables. Not everyone can get killer avocados and strawberries in the dead of winter. For this, I am also grateful. And because of it, despite the horrible wildfires, I may never leave the Sunshine State. Well, that and my love of wearing flip-flops year-round.

Canned and frozen vegetables have never actually been my thing. But as a child of the ’70s and ’80s, I was forced to eat my share of what I now call “backup vegetables“. I’ve blogged about my dislike of eating soft mushy vegetables before. Fresh, versus canned or frozen, does not even come close in comparison. But, sometimes there are exceptions, even for a vegetable and fruit snob like me.

This is my sweet pea soup with pesto, and it is a new favorite of mine. The ironic part is, it is made with frozen peas. Like my raspberry fruit bars, sometimes frozen fruit or vegetables can come in handy and simplify things, without sacrificing taste.

sweet pea soup

The really surprising thing is, that frozen peas taste better than fresh peas in this recipe. Frozen peas are what’s called “flash-frozen” at the peak of ripeness. You can depend on the sweetness and soft texture. Store-bought fresh peas tend to become more firm and starchy from the time they are picked to the time they are purchased. Unless they are picked fresh from your garden, frozen peas are just the way to go sometimes.

Many people ask what is the difference between petite peas and regular peas. Petite peas are usually smaller, sweeter, and more delicate than regular peas. Regular peas are meatier, and the skin on them is a little tougher. If you’re looking for the best brand of frozen peas, check this Epicurious article out which ranks all the different frozen pea brands on the market.

sweet pea soup

The truth about peas may surprise you. Peas are not vegetables, they are small, edible legumes belonging to the same family as lentils, chickpeas, beans, and peanuts. Peas grow in pods on a vine and once the pod is plump enough, they are considered “ripe” for picking. Parents are notorious for saying “Eat your peas“, told, there appears to be some solid reasoning behind all their nagging.

Health-wise, peas are great for you. Peas are a good source of plant-based protein, have a low glycemic index, and a high fiber content. Peas are also high in iron, contain heart-friendly minerals including; magnesium, potassium, and calcium, and are also rich in antioxidant nutrients like vitamin C, as well as phytonutrients including carotenoids and flavonols which support cardiovascular function. The soluble fiber peas contain is said to help manage cholesterol levels, especially LDL cholesterol. So if you are not eating peas in your diet regularly, you better start, fresh or frozen, they are insanely good for you.

sweet pea soupThis sweet pea soup recipe could not be easier to make and is a lovely summer soup. This blended soup requires minimal cooking, and truthfully, it’s the pesto that takes more time to make. But don’t skip the pesto, it complements the earthy peas perfectly. The main pitiful you need to avoid when making this soup is cooking the peas themselves. Five minutes is all you need, that allows the peas to retain their beautiful, vibrant green hue, but if you’re reading a food blog, I think you can handle that.

sweet pea soup

About the Author

Andrea Potischman

I am a professionally trained NYC chef turned CA mom and food blogger. I post about real food, with doable ingredient lists that are family friendly.

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