One of D's 2012 resolutions was to get more vegetables into his diet. I know this partly because he has written it next to the pea soup recipe in February's Good Food magazine.
This suits me down to the ground because, as fellow devotees of Weight Watchers will know, most vegetables contain zero points and therefore can be consumed with impunity.
It turns out that we are not in any danger of becoming full blown vegetarians just yet though, as we seem to have a tendency to insert some sort of pig into every recipe we come across. Very few savoury dishes are not improved by the addition of bacon. Thus the "and ham" of the title.
This soup is scrumptious and despite it's healthsome contents doesn't feel too virtuous. Don't forget the basil - it works brilliantly with the peas here.
Tbsp olive oil
5 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 celery heart, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
5 leeks, trimmed and thinly sliced
200g frozen peas
850ml veg, chicken or ham stock
3 large handfuls fresh basil
150g cooked ham or gammon, shredded
Serves 4, 4 pro points per portion
Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the shallots and celery and cook for about 5 minutes until softened. Next in are the leeks and garlic - allow them to soften for a further 5 minutes. Finally go the peas. Stir through the other veg then pour over the stock, bring to the boil and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the peas are cooked.
Transfer half of the soup into a blender with the basil and whizz into purée. Return it to the pan along with the shredded meat and stir through. Check for seasoning before serving.
The original recipe suggests garlic bread as a good side dish for this - we concur.
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