In Italy you learn to appreciate fresh vegetables when you are little.
I find that many people in the UK learn to appreciate food when they are older rather than when they are children. We all know that children can be notoriously fussy with food but exposing them to a varied diet in their early years will eventually win their taste buds and will make family meals much easier. Fresh vegetables are lovely when they are in season. In my family we love to snack on fresh organic carrots and cucumbers all around the year but especially during the summer months when your body needs more water, so fruit and veg and light foods are more appealing than heavy calory-rich ones.
Fruit and veg also helps a lot at coping with the summer heat.
I had a box of organic carrots which needed using up so I came up with a summer soup to be served lukewarm which I took inspiration from "La Cucina Italiana", one of my favourites Italian recipe websites.
I served the carrot soup with a "mousse" made with fresh peas and olive oil and some grated organic orange peel which goes well with the carrots.
- Prep Time : 25 minutes
- Cook Time : 20 minutes
- Yield : 4
Wash and peel the carrots and cut them into rounds. Put them in a pan, cover them with cold water, add a pinch of salt and bring to the boil. Cook for approximately 8 to 9 minutes or until soft. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil and whiz.
I had someone to shell my peas.. this is always my children's job during the summer holidays.
Bring to the boil a pan of water and cook the peas for 2 to 3 minutes; drain and whiz them with 2 tbsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt and a couple of mint leaves. It should be a creamy like consistency. Add an extra tbsp of oil if needed.
Bring the milk to the boil, add the grated cheese and mix to get a creamy like consistency.
Serve the soup on 4 bowls, decorate with the mashed peas (I have used a teaspoon for that), the fresh herbs and the cheese sauce. You can use a syringe if you like.
Finish off with fresh ground pepper and the grated orange zest.