Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Lovage and Yellow Split Pea Soup

Last year my friend gave me a “herb tin”. A big metal tin were he had planted variety of herbs, like, sage, tarragon, mint, oregano and lovage. Now I don't know a lot about lovage, or know what to do with it. I took a bite to see what it tasted like and I got the flavours of celery, parsley with a hint of bitterness towards the end, but still wondered how to use it. For a better description of the flavour and for other lovage recipes see an article in The Guardian, by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

I wondered how I could use it quickly because it was taking over my “herb tin”. I was going to try a potato and lovage soup, but I had some dried yellow split peas in my cupboard that needed to used. I love the earthiness of the yellow split peas and I wondered if the herby lovage would over power the peas, but it doesn't. The resulting soup has a bold strong flavour and was very tasty, but I don't think it would be every ones “cup of tea”, but give it a try and let me know what you think.

I like a bite in my soups, so before I blended the mixture together I took some of the cooked split peas out of the pan, which I added back into the soup once I had blended it.

  • 250g dried yellow split peas (soak in water overnight)
  • 25g butter
  • 1tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 4 lovage stalks, roughly chopped
  • 600ml vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper to season
  • serves 4

Rinse out the soaked yellow split peas and put to one side

Put the butter and oil into a pan and add the onion and garlic, once the butter has melted. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure the onions and garlic don't burn
Once the onions are soft add the yellow spilt peas and stir together until they are covered by the onion mixture. Add the lovage and stir all together and cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally.

Add the vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for about 30-40 minutes,until the yellow split peas are soft.

Blend the mixture all together with either a food processor or a hand blender.

I served mine with some plain white yoghurt to add some acidity, but you don't have to.

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