I apologize if the title of this post confused you. I’m obviously a child of the 80’s, and think that the rock musical Starlight Express is the bomb. Moving along: today I want to post about one of my favorite cookbooks, the lovely Nigella Express: Good Food, Fast by the lovely Nigella Lawson.
I have nearly all of Nigella’s cookbooks, but because I’m constantly in a hurry/flurry, this is the one I pull out the most. The titular “Express” refers, of course, to fast food- not the sodium-drenched kind, but quick and easy meals you can make yourself at home, whatever sort of hurry/flurry you find yourself in.
Like this Pea and Pesto soup. I never thought to marry peas and pesto, but a few days ago I found myself staring at the photo of creamy green soup in the book, imagining how such a combination- the fresh mushiness of the peas, the garlicky pepperiness of the pesto- might taste in my mouth. And so I made it:
Pea and Pesto Soup
from Nigella Express: Good Food, Fast
3 cups water
3 cups frozen peas
1 teaspoon Maldon salt or kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon lime juice
4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) fresh pesto (not jarred)
The quickest way to proceed is to fill a kettle first and put it on to boil. When it’s boiled, measure the amount you need into a pan and put on the stove to come back to a boil.
Add the frozen peas, scallions, salt and lime juice and let everything bubble together for 7 minutes.
Discard the scallions and blitz the peas and their liquid with the pesto in a blender.*
Pour into a thermos flask that you’ve left filled with hot water and then emptied and make sure you screw the top on securely.
*When blending hot liquids: Remove liquid from the heat and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes. Transfer liquid to a blender or food processor and fill it no more than halfway. If using a blender, release one corner of the lid. This prevents the vacuum effect that creates heat explosions. Place a towel over the top of the machine, pulse a few times then process on high speed until smooth.
The verdict? Delicious. Almost gloriously so. And so, so comforting.