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EMERALD SOUP WITH PESTO

 A Brilliant Spring Soup To Begin Any Feast 

Whether you're serving ham or brisket, mashed or roasted potatoes a lovely way to show off your feast is to welcome your rich main course with this spring-time soup. And it's a way to celebrate our greenest extra virgin olive oils, too. Don't forget to have your favourite drizzle on hand!

SERVES: 4 to 6
INGREDIENTS:

5 tbsp cup extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 leek, finely chopped, ends and green removed
 1 celery stalk, chopped
2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, removed from woody stems
2-1/2 cups chicken stock or water
1 cup sugar snap peas, sliced in half horizontally
1⁄4 bunch kale, ribs and stems removed, torn in 2-inch pieces
1 small can cannellini (white kidney) beans, thoroughly rinsed
1/2 cup frozen peas frozen peas, thawed
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
Shaved Parmesan for serving
(Optional: Red chili pepper flakes)
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Walnut Pesto Ingredients:
2 tablespoons toasted walnut pieces
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup finely grated Parmesan
1 lemon, juice and zest
1/4 tsp Kosher salt 
1/8 fresh ground pepper

DIRECTIONS (SOUP):
On medium heat, place 4 tbsp olive oil, celery, leeks, onion and thyme leaves. Saute until soft, about 3 minutes. Do not overcook. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Add sugar snap peas and cook until barely tender. Add kale, beans and peas, then cook for 3 minutes. Salt to taste while cooking. Serve with shaved Parmesan, a dollop of walnut pesto (directions below) and a drizzle of Baklouti olive oil (or a sprinkle of red pepper chili flakes)

DIRECTIONS (PESTO):
In a blender or food processor, place garlic, lemon zest and juice, toasted walnuts, Parmesan, basil and parsley. Pulse gently, stopping occasionally to clean sides and evenly mix ingredients. Slowly pour olive oil into mixture until blended with a smooth but crunchy texture.

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OUR EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL COLLECTION: