Pea & Ham Soup


Jim & Ann, my parents-in-law

“L’amour d’une famille est la plus grande bénédiction.”
– ‘Life’s greatest blessing is a loving family.’

Jim and Ann are les chefs de famille, the heads of the family. Childhood sweethearts, they met at their local youth club in Harbourne, Birmingham. On holiday, you will find Ann working hard helping in the kitchen and Jim chatting, putting the world to right. Kind and caring, they welcomed me whole-heartedly and have created a warm, loving family, which truly is a blessing for anyone to have in their life.

I have included this recipe, as it is one of Ann’s favourites. It is the combination of the minty peas with the salty ham that makes this pairing special.

Pea & Ham Soup

Serves 4
30g (1oz) unsalted butter * 1 onion, finely chopped * 1 large potato, cut into small cubes * 285g (10oz) frozen petits pois * 395ml (14 floz) chicken stock * 200ml (7 floz) whole milk * 85g (3oz) thick-cut ham, in chunks * small handful fresh mint leaves, hand torn * salt & freshly ground black pepper

Heat the butter in a large saucepan on low heat, then add the onion and potato, season with salt and pepper, then stir. Lay a piece of baking paper, large enough to overhang the top of the pan, over the surface of the vegetables. Put a lid on the pan, cook on a low heat for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and the onions are soft.

Remove the paper. Add the peas and chicken stock to the pan, then bring to the boil. Cook for 2 minutes, or until the peas are tender. Take the pan off the heat. Using a stick blender, process the peas until very smooth. Add the milk. Put most of the ham in. Bring the soup back to a simmer, then season to taste with salt and pepper, remembering that the ham is fairly salty. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls then scatter with the rest of the ham and a few mint leaves.

I have collated all my favourite recipes into one book FOOD FOR ALL OCCASIONS.

There are more recipes in the section THE FRENCH COLLECTION, a selection of authentic French recipes.


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