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Archive for December 25th, 2007

A Soup, A Recipe

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007


It seems I often post on holidays, of food. It seems appropriate even for those who do not share the same holidays I practice.

One of the few non-knitting blogs I read is The Cooking Adventures of Chef Paz. Paz not only lives in New York City, but did not grow up there. This means a view of the city from something of an outsider perspective.

Luckily that means that even though it is a food blog, we get “New York Mondays,” a repeating feature with at least one photograph from the city. Paz is a good photographer and i love that feature.

This is a normal food blog (as opposed to allergy-focused), written by someone who apparently grew up in Africa. Now, Africa is a huge place and I don’t know details other than Paz loves rice… and that is apparently tied to whatever foods were commonly served in the area of Africa where she (? I think I’ve determined that Paz is female after a year of reading) lived.

Anyway, this food blog is very interesting to me even when I can not eat the food featured. There has been bread baking, and lots of soupmaking, and talk of cilantro (Paz loves it) and plantains and beans and all sorts of other goodies from New York markets.

Then recently, a recipe for Green Pea Soup. Not split pea, but frozen/fresh peas. I love peas, they are a very good food for me right now, they are fresh and a bit sweet and filling. I figured I’d try the recipe (with lots of substitutes because of my allergies or what was in the house when I started).

Paz’ version includes bacon, potato and broth. Mine includes sliced deli turkey, white yam and water with a bit of Braggs Aminos (a not too appetizing name for unfermented soy sauce).

I got white yam at the asian market. It has a strong purple skin but the flesh is very white, and it’s a little nicer than potato, with a better texture cooked. It is not sweet though it looks a lot like the sweet potatoes that Americans call yams but which are not in the same family.

I had not tried white yam before, I did not know how quickly they would cook. Therefore, I cut mine into matchsticks and they sort of disintegrated while cooking, which worked fine but was time consuming. Next time I won’t cut them quite so small.

You can click the link to the original in the paragraph above. Or try my version, or mix them up and do what seems right. It’s very forgiving.

For the record, some people told Paz that this soup needed to be pureed in a blender. I am not at all big on blenders, and in this case I’m wondering if they were confusing this with split pea soup.

So mine, like the version Paz made, contains yummy whole veggies. Yum. It was incredibly satisfying, even for a person like me who is not fond of broth-based soups. I hope some of you will try this, it’s really easy and very filling, really sticks with you.

Green Pea Soup

1 bag (appx 500gm) frozen green peas

1 large white yam (or sub white potato), equals 3 cups of chopped matchstick pieces

2 Tbsp yellow onion, chopped very small

2 large fresh carrots (called for more but I was short)

2 liters/8 cups water (or use broth)

2 tbsp Braggs Aminos (or soy sauce, or skip if you used broth)

1/2 lb sliced deli turkey or other meat

2 Tbsp ghee (clarified butter, or use your favorite sauteeing oil)

black pepper to taste

1 Tbsp marjoram (or sub parsley)

Melt ghee/oil in pot, sautee onion until clear and soft. Add meat and cook until it looks browned in some places (for flavor). Add peas, water and Braggs/soy sauce if using, turn heat on slow simmer.

Chop carrots and yam/potato into small pieces suitable for soup (can double number of carrots, I was at the end of my supply). Add to pot as you complete chopping each one.

Add pepper to taste, and add marjoram. Cook about 90 minutes on low. (In photo, I garnished with fresh parsley.)