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Pea and Spinach Soup with Coconut Milk

(recipe, Fine Cooking Magazine)

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Fresh peas are a must for this soup, but you don’t need a ton of them. Spinach adds to the color and texture of the soup while letting the pea flavor come through.


  1. 2 large leeks (white parts plus the pale green), quartered and sliced to yield 2 cups (or 2 cups thinly sliced white onion)
  2. 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  3. 2 Tbsp. white basmati rice
  4. 1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
  5. 2 tsp. curry powder
  6. 4 sprigs fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
  7. 4 cups homemade Vegetable Stock or low-salt canned vegetable or chicken broth
  8. 1½ to 2 lb. peas, shucked (to yield 1½ to 2 cups)
  9. 4 cups lightly packed coarsely chopped spinach leaves, any thick stems removed, well washed
  10. 7 oz. coconut milk (about 1 cup)
  11. Freshly ground white pepper to taste


  1. Soak the leeks in a bowl of cold water to remove any grit.
  2. Meanwhile, in a soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter and stir in the rice.
  3. Scoop the leeks from the water, shaking off excess, and add them to the pot along with the salt, curry powder, cilantro, and 1 cup of the stock. Cook over medium-low heat at a vigorous simmer for about 12 minutes, so the rice is almost done.
  4. Add the remaining 3 cups stock, the peas, and the spinach and bring to a boil. Boil for about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the coconut milk.
  5. In a blender or a food processor, purée the soup in batches until smooth. Taste for salt, season with white pepper, and serve, garnished with fresh cilantro leaves. (If you prefer a soup with more texture, purée 1 cup and return it to the pot, season, garnish, and serve.)