Pea, Pesto & Arugula Soup Recipe

A quick and healthy soup from British model and cookbook author Sophie Dahl.


A large handful of fresh basil leaves
1 clove garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
A few tbsp of pine nuts
4 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 small zucchini, chopped
3-1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 package (1 lb.) frozen peas
A large handful of arugula


Step 1: Place all of the pesto ingredients in a blender or food processor and whiz up until you have a green, bubbly sauce, adding a splash of water if the pesto is a little thick. Taste, season, and adjust anything that needs adjusting.

Step 2: In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and soften the onion. Add the zucchini, then pour in the stock and simmer on low for 8-10 minutes.

Step 3: Add the peas and arugula, bring back to a boil, and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the vegetables are tender.

Step 4: Let the soup cool for 15 minutes or so and then, in careful batches, mix in a blender until you have a velvety purée. Reheat in the saucepan or serve cold, as it works either way. You can either run 4 tbsp of pesto through the soup when you’re serving or reheating, if you are. Or, if serving cold, add it to the blender when you are puréeing the batches.

See more recipes from Sophie Dahl.

Reprinted with permission from Sophie Dahl’s Very Fond of Food (2012 Ten Speed Press).