Friday, March 6, 2009
Fresh Pea Soup with Caramelized Onions and Bacon
The Diva coming to you with a brand spankin' new recipe! By Thursday night, who isn't tired from a long week and ready to throw in the towel and surrender to take out? If my boyfriend, Kuzak, was in charge, we'd be eating out of a greasy brown bag every night. Fortunately for us, and our arteries, he's not! But even I'm feeling a little fatigued by the end of the week, so one of my favorite staples to make for a warm, soothing dinner is soup. When it's paired with either a small panini sandwich or a great salad, soup transforms magically into a complete meal.
After surveying my fridge and cupboard, I decided to create a modern take on the old staple, Split Pea Soup with Ham. Instead of dried peas, I had a fridge full of two kinds of fresh peas: English Peas and Sugar Snap Peas. Instead of cooking soup the traditional way beginning with sauteing onions and cooking the peas with ham, I decided to deconstruct the soup. I blanched the peas and pureed them in a homemade veggie stock with garlic and olive oil, and served the soup with a heap of caramelized onions and a piece of crispy bacon. The resulting dish was lovely - a shocking bright green - and full of flavor, but also incredibly light. After whipping up some turkey and goat cheese panini's, we settled into my kitchen "Bistro" for a lovely dinner.
Domestic Diva's Fresh Pea Soup with Caramelized Onions and Bacon
3 cups fresh peas (I used a combo of English Peas and Sugar Snap Peas)
3 cups homemade vegetable stock (simmer onion, carrot, celery, garlic and a bay leaf in filtered water for at least an hour)
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup olive plus 1 tbsp for drizzling
2 pieces of bacon
1 yellow onion
salt and pepper
Bring a pot of water to boil. Quickly, blanch the peas in the water for a few minutes until tender. Remove from the water and rinse with cold water.
In a blender, puree the peas, stock, garlic and 1/4 cup olive oil until smooth. Adjust the amount of stock to achieve desired thickness. Return the soup to the stove top and simmer for 8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, over medium high heat, fry the bacon slices until crispy. Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels.
Drain most of the bacon fat from the pan, reserving a small amount. Add the onions to the pan, cooking over medium heat, until caramelized (about 10 minutes). Salt and pepper to taste.
To plate, ladle some soup into a bowl.
Add a good heap of the onions to the center of the bowl and top with a piece of crispy bacon. Drizzle with olive oil and serve!