Kina Savoy and Split Pea Puree Soup

Kina savoy is an Asian cooking green that isn’t as well known as it’s close cousins, tatsoi, and bok choy.  Kina savoy, also known as yukina savoy, is mildly mustardy and peppery, and can be eaten raw as well as cooked.  The stalks look and cook a lot like celery.  That was our inspiration to use it in this vegan soup with split peas.

Cooking vegan or even vegetarian dishes can be a challenge flavor wise so instead of simply adding the onions, carrots, and kina savoy stalks to the soup we roasted them first to caramelize them and really boost the flavor of the soup.  We chop the wrinkly leaves, which is where it’s name is derived (think savoy cabbage), and add them right at the end.  Split pea soup can be somewhat olive green in color; adding the kina savoy leaves right at the end gives the finished soup a bright color.

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Preparation Time:  45 minutes

Cooking Time:  20 minutes

Serves:  8 1 cup servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 large or 2 medium bunches of kina savoy, stalks large dice and leaves chopped
    • Reserve several of the smaller, internal leaves to fry and use as garnish if desired.
  • 1 lb dried split peas
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 cup large dice yellow onions
  • 1 cup large dice carrots
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp safflower oil
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste

 

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Preparation:

  • Pre-heat the oven to “Broil”.
  • Peel and large dice 1 medium to large yellow onion; set aside.
  • Wash and large dice 1 large carrot; set aside.
  • Wash and pat dry 1 large or 2 medium bunches of kina savoy
    • Cut the thick stalks into 1 to 2 inch lengths; set aside.
    • Chop the greens; set aside.
  • Peel and mince the garlic; set aside.

Cooking:

  • Roast the veggies:
    • Place the onions, carrots, and kina savoy stalks on a baking tray, drizzle the oil over the veggies, sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt and a couple of turns of a black pepper mill, mix well.
    • Place in the preheated oven and broil for about 10 minutes, turning the veggies after 5 minutes.
    • Remove the veggies after they have caramelized.
  • Make the soup:
    • Place the roasted veggies in a large soup pot and on a burner set at medium-high, add the garlic and stir, cook until you can smell the garlic, about 1 minute.
    • Add the split peas, water, and dried thyme, bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer, cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    • Once the peas have become tender add the kina savoy leaves and cook for another 2 minutes.
    • Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

Note:  At this point, the soup is done and ready to serve, that is if you want a more rustic preparation but if you want a more refined presentation (shown below) continue with the following steps.

  • Ladle the soup into a high-speed blender and fill it to no more than half the height of the blender.  Place the lid of the blender on securely (see Safety tip below).
  • Safety tip!  The soup will be hot so make sure you hold the lid of the blender down as the air in any blender with hot items especially liquid will expand rapidly.
  • Blend at high speed until creamy then pour into a clean soup pot.
  • Repeat until all of the original soup has been pureed.
  • At this point check the finished soup for you desired consistency.  If it is too thick add hot water but only 1 cup at a time, until you reach the consistency you like.
  • Reseason to taste with kosher salt and black pepper.

 

  • Make the fried kina savoy leaf garnish (optional):
    • Heat a small amount of oil in a small frying pan to 350F.
    • Carefully place the small leaves set aside earlier and fry until crispy (about 1-2 minutes).
    • Place on paper towel to drain any excess oil; set aside.
  • Your more refined kina savoy and split pea puree soup is done and ready to serve!

Enjoy!

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