Summery Garden Pea Soup

This summer, SUSAN BIJL and Chef Monique continue the Dutch tradition of using peas in soup.

Dutch Split Pea Soup, also known as "Erwtensoep," is a hearty and traditional soup from the Netherlands, often enjoyed during the colder months and made primarily with split peas and winter vegetables like onions, leeks, carrots, and celery, and a variety of smoked meats or vegetarian substitutes.

But what about the warmer months?! Rest assured, Chef Monique is to the rescue with our new favourite soup recipe.

Garden Pea Soup

Compared to its winter variant, garden pea soup has a lighter and more vibrant flavour, with the sweetness of the peas taking centre stage. It is often combined with other fresh vegetables or herbs, such as mint, parsley, for a burst of freshness.

A Chef Monique recipe wouldn’t be a Chef Monique recipe without a special Chef Monique touch. This soup inspires us to make our own broth using kombu. In fact, you can, of course, make your own kombu broth for any recipe that requires broth.

Kombu & broth

Kombu, a type of edible kelp, is rich in essential minerals, such as iodine, potassium, calcium, and magnesium, and is a fantastic natural flavour enhancer. The mineral benefits are perfect during summer when we tend to sweat a little more due to the potential heat. Including kombu in your broth can be especially beneficial for those who follow a plant-based diet, as it is a natural source of iodine, which is typically found in seafood.

When making your own kombu broth, don’t wash off the white powdery substance you may notice on the surface of dried kombu. This is the layer of natural salts which are rich in minerals, as mentioned before.

For the recipe below, add a piece of kombu to 250ml cold water in a pot and let it soak for about 20-30 minutes. Remove the kombu from the pot. This infused water is your kombu broth. Use it in addition to your vegetable broth.

After using the piece of kombu for the first time, allow it to dry completely. You can lay it flat on a clean plate or hang it to air-dry. When dry, store the kombu in an airtight container away from moisture. One piece of kombu can be used for making broth at least 4 times, probably more!

For the vegetable broth, Monique makes her own with remnants or scraps of vegetables, like carrots, onions, bay leaves, fresh thyme, garlic, the ends of green beans, leeks or celery. Add the vegetables to roughly 1 litre of water, bring it to a boil and let it simmer gently for at least 45 minutes. The longer, the tastier. Onions are essential!

Garden Pea Soup

Ingredients for approx 4 people

- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 medium-sized onions, diced
- 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
- pinch of sea salt
- 500g garden peas (fresh or frozen)
- 40g flat-leaf parsley, leaves only
- 750ml of vegetable broth (homemade if possible)
- 250ml of kombu broth
- zest and juice of ½ lemon or lime
- 1 tbsp olive oil


Heat the sesame oil in a big pot and add the onions. Sauté for a minute, then add a generous pinch of salt. Continue stirring and let the onions soften for 5-10 minutes. Next, reduce the heat for a moment and add the garlic; sauté for about 3 minutes.

Pour in 75% of the kombu and vegetable broth, and then add the peas. Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat. Add the parsley and stir well. Let it sit for a moment, then puree the soup. By turning off the heat and letting it sit, the parsley will remain bright green without becoming limp in texture. If needed, add more broth. Season with lemon zest, lemon juice, and a little olive oil. Serve hot, lukewarm, or cold.


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