Let me tell you what not to bring to a potluck.
Unless you are armed with extra lemons.
I waiver between trying new and old recipes for unsuspecting guests at potlucks. This time, I tried a new recipe.
Well, it could. And it went wrong twice.
The soup, as written, was bland. To zip it up, I added more fresh lemon juice and lots of fresh pepper. Now I was content, this soup was nice! Since soups always taste better after mellowing a few hours, I figured this was going to be a winner.
Got to my potluck, opened my soup, warmed it up…. and did the taste test.
Oh no! It went back to its bland self and I had a sorry soup to serve.
Most of my meals taste great (even if Rob doesn’t agree), but here I was, speechless, with a so-so soup. And no lemon to perk it up again.
I don’t really mind when recipes are lackluster, but when I serve it to guests, that’s when I cringe. But I swear, it tastes great fresh and a little more fresh lemon juice was probably what the leftovers needed. Moral of the story: Don’t leave home without your lemon. ;)
Split Pea Soup with Lemon and Spinach
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups uncooked split peas (~450 grams dry), picked over and rinsed
5 cups vegetable broth
1 cup baby spinach, rinsed
juice and zest from 1 large lemon
salt and pepper, to taste
1. In a large pot, add olive oil over medium heat. Stir in onions and salt and cook until the onions soften, just for a few minutes. Reduce heat if necessary so you don’t burn the onions.
2. Add the uncooked split peas and broth. Bring to a boil, dial down the heat, and simmer for 25-35 minutes, or until the peas are cooked through (but do not overcook). The peas should still be slightly crunchy.
3. Ladle half of the soup into a bowl and set aside. Using a blender, puree the other half of the soup. Add a large handful of spinach and blend until smooth. The soup will be a gorgeous green colour.
4. Stir the reserved (chunky) soup back into the pureed mixture – you should have a soup that is nicely textured. If you need to thin the soup out with more stock do so a bit at a time. Stir in the lemon juice and taste. Adjust seasonings if necessary.
5. Scoop into bowls or cups, and serve each with a swirl of olive oil, a pinch of smoked paprika, and lemon zest.