Nothing beats a scorching hot bowl of soup in the winter. Whether it's served as a kick off starter while entertaining friends or as a no fuss dinner on the coffee table in front of your tv, it's a must during the winter season.
Pea soup is an old time favorite of mine, but ive decide that this time around I would kick it up notch by adding a good splash of sweet sherry, which adds a sweet kick to this fresh flavored soup.
Its great as is with only some crusty bread, but if I want to dish it out for a dinner party, I would finish it off with some chorizo oil and croûtons. By the addition of the smoky chorizo and crunchy croûtons a simple bowl of soup is taken to a whole other level. Enjoy!
Pea and sherry soup with chorizo oil and croûtons
3 tbsp olive oil
1 lg onion, finely chopped
1 lg leek only white and pale green part only
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 cups chicken stock
1/3 cup sherry, ( such as Cream sherry)
2 pound frozen peas, defrosted
¼ cup (firmly packed) mint
3 tbsp cream
3 tbsp finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp sherry vinegar, or to taste
Chorizo oil and croûtons
1/3 cup olive oil
1 chorizo, diced
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
2 oz coarsely torn crustless sourdough bread
1 For chorizo oil and croûtons, heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, add chorizo and a minute later the garlic and sauté until chorizo is golden (2-3 minutes), then transfer to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Add torn bread to pan and sauté until golden and crisp (4-5 minutes), season to taste, then return chorizo to pan, stir to combine and keep warm.
2 Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add onion, leeks and garlic and sauté until tender (4-5 minutes). Add chicken stock and sherry, bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add peas, simmer until just tender (2-3 minutes), remove from heat, then add mint, and process with a hand-held blender until smooth. Add cream, Parmesan cheese and vinegar, season to taste and divide among shallow bowls. Spoon over chorizo and croûtons, and serve hot. Serve the soup as soon as it’s ready to keep the bright green colour alive.
Note: If you dont have cooking sherry you could substitute it with Marsala wine
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