Title: Pea Soup, minted with Smoked Salmon
Yield: 4 servings
In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 8 minutes. Add all but 2 tablespoons of the peas and the mint and cook for 1 minute. Add the stock and simmer for 5 minutes.
Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until silky smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan and season with salt. Gently rewarm the soup and ladle it into 4 shallow bowls. Garnish with the reserved peas, the smoked salmon and a dollop of creme fraiche and serve.
Make ahead The soup can be refrigerated overnight.
Nairn opts for frozen peas in his delicate soup because they tend to be sweeter and less starchy than fresh peas, not to mention faster to prepare. Nairn often makes the soup in advance; he chills it quickly in an ice-water bath before freezing it to retain the vivid green color.