Pea and Basil Soup

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Soup in the summer? You may be thinking, that does not sound appetizing. It is obviously much too hot to eat a steaming bowl of soup!  Well, I couldn’t agree more. Soup is divine, but not something we think much of in these warm summer months. It’s a shame, really. Soup is simple, quick, perfect for batch cooking and notorious for its ability to assist detoxing and promote healing. I could honestly eat soup every day, and I did during a gut healing protocol that left me feeling better than I had in years. All hail the miraculous powers of soup!

In fact, those of us with an affinity for soup may grow to resent seasons that inspire its absence. This would be a tragic misunderstanding, and one in which summer itself may say, “Are you kidding me?! Do you not see what a gift I am to gardens everywhere with rows of happily climbing tomatoes, peas, and beans? What are you to do with the boxes spilling over with cucumbers and fresh herbs reaching up to the sky?” Summer would have every right to say this to us.  We don’t need sweaters and snow to enjoy our soup if we learn to embrace it in a new way. For instance, what if soup wasn’t always warm? What if we chose chilled soup over ice cream for a refreshing summer snack? Consider a bright bowl of chilled pea and basil soup.  I may be crazy for comparing pea soup to ice cream, but stay with me here. Like other traditional treats, it’s silky smooth, comforting, and colorful. Yet unlike a scoop of your favorite frozen custard, this savory soup will leave you refreshed and satiated. Not to mention it’s many nutritional benefits!

Chilled pea and basil soup allows you to step into your garden and prepare a seasonal dish that not only tastes incredible but supports your body as it works to detoxify and reduce heat.  Saying yes to chilled soup this summer will honor your body’s keen intuition and wisdom while keeping you cool and calm on those scorching summer days. Start swapping your sundaes today with this gorgeous, garden-fresh pea and basil summer soup!

Why we love it:

  • Peas are rich in both plant based protein (8.6 grams/cup) and fiber (8.8 grams/cup) and contain a high amount of antioxidants as well as micronutrients, such as vitamin K, vitamin C and manganese. They help support healthy digestion, keep your blood sugar in check and even promote weight loss.
  • Peas contain free radical fighting antioxidants that relieve inflammation and oxidative damage to cells, reducing the risk of cancer. Saponins, a type of antioxidant found in green peas, may help inhibit tumor growth and kill off cancer cells.
  • Basil is from the same family as mint. It is a good source of vitamin A, high in vitamin K, and essential for blood clotting. The volatile oils in basil (estragole, linalool, cineole, eugenol, sabinene, myrcene, and limonene) provide antibacterial properties.
  • The compound E-beta-caryophyllene in basil is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent, making it a helpful treatment for diseases rooted in inflammation, such as arthritis, IBS, and autoimmune diseases.

 

Pea and Basil Soup

 

Ingredients:

  • 4 T. butter
  • 2 medium yellow onion – diced
  • 4 c. chicken broth
  • 4 c. fresh or frozen peas
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ c. cream or buttermilk
  • 2 c. fresh basil-chopped
  • 6 T. roasted pine nuts (optional for garnish)

 

Directions:

  1. Place a saucepan, with the butter, on medium heat.
  2. Add onions and cook for 10 minutes or until soft.
  3. Add the chicken stock, peas, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes.
  5. Stir in the cream (buttermilk) and basil.
  6. Puree with an immersion blender until smooth.
  7. Pour into bowls and garnish with pine nuts if desired.
  8. May be served warm or chilled.

 

Serves 8

 

(Recipe by Chef Lynda Lacher)

 

Chef Kylee Snyder is a recent graduate of NTI’s Natural Food Chef Program. She currently leads nutritional cooking classes and provides holistic health coaching that has been known to cause deep affection towards vegetables. Connect with Kylee at www.rendezfoodhhc.com.

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