Pea and watercress soup with crispy pancetta

The peppery, sweet soup contrasts wonderfully with the salty pancetta.

Time 30 minutes
Calories per portion 275 Kcal
Fat per portion 12.1g
of which saturated 3.7g
Serves 6

Pea and watercress soupOlive oil 2 tbsp
Butter 15g (½oz)
Onion 1 large, chopped
Garlic 1 clove, peeled and finely chopped
Floury potato 1 large, cubed
Chicken stock 1.5 litres (2½ pints)
Frozen peas 900g (2lb)
Watercress 100g bag
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pancetta or thin rashers smoked streaky bacon 75g (3oz), chopped

Heat the oil and butter in a large saucepan, add the onion and garlic and cook gently for 5 minutes, until beginning to soften.

Add the potato and toss with the onion and garlic, then pour in the chicken stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover the pan and simmer the soup for 15 minutes, until the potato is tender.Add the frozen peas and simmer for 3 minutes. Then add the watercress and stir in until wilted.

Remove from the heat, let it cool for a few minutes then purée with a hand-held electric wand or in a food processor or blender, until smooth. Return to the pan, if necessary, season to taste and keep warm over a gentle heat.Meanwhile, preheat the grill to hot.

Grill the pancetta or bacon for 2–3 minutes on each side, until crisp. Remove and drain on kitchen paper and then break up into pieces.Ladle the soup into warm bowls and top each with some of the pancetta pieces.

Cook’s Tip
Pancetta is cured pork and is usually sold ready-chopped near to the bacon in the supermarket..

Recipe taken from Good Food, Fast. Dairy Cookbook.

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