Chilled Fresh Pea and Buttermilk Soup

1 cup

Green peas shine in a soup that gets tang from buttermilk, depth from vermouth, and body from a Yukon Gold potato. Delicate pea tendrils are a fitting garnish, but optional.


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 cup thinly sliced leek (pale-green parts only, rinsed well)

  • 1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces

  • ¼ cup dry vermouth

  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock

  • 2 cups water

  • 1 pound shelled fresh or thawed frozen peas (3 cups)

  • ¾ cup low-fat buttermilk

  • Salt and pepper

  • Pea tendrils, for garnish


  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add leek, and cook until softened, about4 minutes. Stir in potato and dry vermouth, and reduce slightly, about 2 minutes. Add chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until potatoes are tender, 7 to 8 minutes.

  2. Bring to a boil. Add peas. Cover, and cook just untilpeas are tender and bright green, about 2 minutes. Filling a blender halfway and covering with a kitchentowel, puree soup in batches. Strain through a coarse sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Stir in buttermilk, and season with salt and pepper. Chill soup for at least 3 hours or up to overnight.Garnish each serving with pea tendrils if desired.

Cook's Notes

For another seasonal take, substitute 1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, for the peas.

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