Pea Soup with Trout

Cool and creamy, this recipe gets its bright flavor from the peas and its creamy texture from some potato. This is a quick and easy appetizer for a party and what I liked most about this recipe was that it could be made the day ahead.

This would work well as a cooling summer lunch with a salad, but I served it in porcelain soup spoons to turn it into an appetizer. The smoked trout adds some nice richness and extra saltiness. After whipping up the soup I cooled it down quickly by pouring it into a metal bowl and putting it in the refrigerator. Once the soup was about room temperature I poured it into squeeze bottles and placed them in the refrigerator. The night before the party I put my spoons in the refrigerator too so that my soup and serving vessels would both be cold. Right before the party I had some help from an early guest who lined up the spoons and used the squeeze bottles to fill them with soup and then added a bit of smoked trout to each.

To prepare a larger serving try to use a wide shallow bowl and place a larger piece of the smoked trout fillet in the middle of the soup. It would also be good with chives and crème fraîche.

Spring Pea Soup with Smoked Trout

2 cups peas
1 medium Yukon gold potato
1 small yellow onion
1 clove garlic
4 tbs olive oil
2 cups water
Smoked trout fillet (about 4 ounces for this amount of soup)

Bring a small pot of water to boil and add the potato – cook for about 20 minutes until cooked through. Remove from the water – allow to cool and then remove the peel and cut into quarters. Roughly chop the onion and smash the garlic clove. Preheat a pan to medium heat  and when hot add 2 tbs of olive oil the, onion, and the garlic. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan. Allow to cook, stiring occasionally for about 2o minutes, or until the onions are translucent and well cooked (but not browned – you don’t want them to have any color).

Add the the peas, potato, about 2 tsp of kosher salt, and 2 cups of water to the pan. Turn the heat to medium and bring to a simmer and cook until the peas turn bright green. Remove from the heat and, working in batches, puree the soup in a blender (adding water to thin if necessary), along with the extra olive oil (this increases the rich mouthfeel of the final soup). Force the soup through a fine mesh strainer (it won’t all go through – that’s okay, just toss what you can’t force through the strainer) using a spatula or spoon. Season to taste with salt and pepper and cool.

Serve using the suggestions above.