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Carrot and Fresh Pea Soup with Cinnamon Croutons RECIPE

This recipe was contributed by Shirley Cline.

Shirley was a great inspiration when I first started working on the idea of creating a recipe and cooking web site. Not only did she encourage me but she also supplied a great many recipes and other pieces which are featured throughout the site. Her great achievement was to teach me to cook risotto over the internet!

Although I never had the chance to meet Shirley, or even talk to her, I regarded her as a good friend. It was with great sadness that I learnt that she passed away in Autumn 2004 and that there would be no more emails. I think she will be sadly missed by a lot of people like me to whom she gave such pleasure with the sharing or her recipes. The pleasure my children have had from her recipe for Strawberries with Balsamic Vinegar and Mint - not to mention the fights for seconds - has been a joy to behold.

The recipe is by Hubert Keller, Fleur De Lys French Restaurant in San Francisco.


1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup onion minced
2 cups carrot minced
1/2 cup leeks, white part only, split and thinly sliced
1 quart vegetable broth
1 pinch sugar
1 small potato, peeled and finely diced about 1/4 cup
1 cup shelled young peas, fresh or frozen (1 1/2 lbs. of pods give you 1 1/2 cups of fresh peas
1/4 cup cream or half and half
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Cinnamon Croutons:

1 1/2 cups 1/4 inch crustless bread cubes, made from Brioche or French bread
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder

  • Coat a saucepan with olive oil and place over medium heat.
  • Add onion, carrot, leek and saute them stirring frequently.
  • After 5 to 8 minutes add the vegetable broth.
  • Season with salt, pepper and a pinch of sugar.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Add the potato, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
  • Add the peas and keep simmering for another 10 minutes.
  • Transfer the mixture in batches to the container of an electric blender or food processor.  Process until very smooth.
  • Return the soup to a saucepan and bring back to a simmer.
  • Adjust the consistency of the soup by adding a little vegetable broth or water, if too thick.
  • Now add the cream or half and half and taste carefully to correct seasoning.
  • Keep hot and prepare the cinnamon croutons.
  • For the croutons heat the olive oil in a heavy medium skillet over medium heat.
  • Add the bread cubes and stir until medium brown, about 3 minutes.
  • Then sprinkle with cinnamon powder. The croutons can be prepared ahead, transferred to a small tray and set aside at room temperature.
  • Serve the soup in shallow soup bowls with the cinnamon croutons on the side or floating atop the soup.

Serves 4

Shirley Cline

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