Courgette, pea and basil soup

I’ve had my eye on this recipe for a few days now. It follows the lentil recipe that I made last week. I had kept the cooking book open and I would see it every time I reached for a piece of fruit or when I made myself a cup of tea or coffee.

I bought some extra courgettes when we went shopping on Monday and by Wednesday this soup was born.

I’ve found that having everything ready to go really helps.

There is a whole head of garlic in this soup! 10 cloves I counted in. When I was cooking this I was on the phone to my friend and we joked that this was a garlic soup with courgette on the side. However the final product is actually not overwhelming garlic- more basil tasting with sharpness of the lemon zest and feta cheese gave it a bit of a kick. It was really really nice!

The recipe states that this will serve eight people. And in fact it did two bowls for me and Ignacio. And then six containers left to eat for when we are too tired to cook. Result!

enough left for evenings or days when I’m too tired to cook


75ml olive oil, plus extra to serve
1 whole head garlic, cloves separated and peeled
6 courgettes, cut into 3cm-thick slices
Salt and black pepper
1 litre vegetable stock
500g frozen peas
50g basil leaves
200g feta, broken into 1-2cm pieces
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon


Heat the oil in a large saucepan on a medium-high flame, then fry the garlic cloves for two to three minutes, stirring often, until caramelised. Add the courgettes, two teaspoons of salt and plenty of pepper, and fry for three minutes, stirring, until starting to brown. Pour in the stock and 500ml cold water, bring to a boil and cook on a high heat for seven minutes, until the courgette is soft but still bright green.

Add the peas, stir through for a minute, then add the basil, turn off the heat and blitz smooth with a stick blender (or in a liquidiser).

To serve, spoon into bowls and top with the feta and lemon zest. Finish with a good grind of black pepper and a final drizzle of oil. 

Reference: ‘Simple’ Ottolenghi page 53

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