February 21, 2012

Wasabi Pea Soup

I love sushi.  LOVE it.  When I first tried sushi in high school, I was hooked.  I especially loved plopping the entire blob of wasabi into soy sauce and dipping to my heart's content.  Wasabi peas became a great way to get my favorite sinus clearing flavor without the high cost of sushi.  Problem?  I eat them like potato chips and don't really like to do a lot of mindless snacking.  So, I thought I would try to translate the flavors of wasabi peas into a soup to get my fix.

To build flavors, I used my mortar and pestle to grind up white peppercorns and wasabi peas.  White peppercorns are unripened black peppercorns and although are typically used for aesthetics (mashed potatoes, cream sauces, etc) the milder flavor hits the palate in the back of the throat and creates a warming sensation.  I especially liked it for this soup because the wasabi hits at the front of the tongue and nose so the white pepper balances the heat.  Sauteed onions and shallots are browned then the crushed pepper and wasabi peas get added with lime zest and juice and a little prepared wasabi.  At the end, the soup is buzzed up with an immersion blender and a little greek yogurt is added instead of cream to lighten up the texture and add protein.  The finishing touch is a squirt of agave nectar, a little of more prepared wasabi, and snipped chives.

The soup is spicy, satisfying, and vegetarian!

Wasabi Pea Soup
1/2 red onion, diced
1 small shallot, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon whole white peppercorns
1 tablespoon wasabi peas
1 lime, zest and juice
3 teaspoons prepared wasabi, divided
1/2 cup frozen edamame
3 cups frozen peas
3 cups stock (I used vegetable, but chicken is good too)
1/2 cup greek yogurt
agave nectar to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)
chives to top
salt and pepper

Saute the diced onions and shallots over medium high heat in the butter and olive oil combined.  Season with salt and pepper.

Crush up the wasabi peas and white pepper with a mortar and pestle.

Add to the onions and saute for 1-2 minutes

Add the lime zest and juice and 2 teaspoons of prepared wasabi.  Combine and then add the edamame and peas.

Almost thawed!  Look at that green color!
After the vegetable have thawed, add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil.  Simmer to reduce, about 10 minutes

Pour it into a heat proof bowl and blend with an immersion blender.  You could also use a regular blender, just mix in batches with a kitchen towel over the lid to protect yourself (think Iron Chef style).

At this time, add the greek yogurt to lighten the texture and taste for seasoning.  For my soup, I added a little more salt and pepper, a scant 1/2 teaspoon of agave nectar to accentuate the sweet notes in the peas, and another teaspoon of prepared wasabi.  Serve up and top with chopped chives.

It is a satisfying meal, perfect for any wasabi cravings!  I cannot wait for lunch tomorrow . . .


  1. The way you Saute the diced onions whit butter and olive oil looks awesome can imagine the flavor and the crunchy of the onions.
    soup to take off the flu he he.

  2. Oh. My. God. I'm making this as soon as i get home! This and two sushi rolls...perfect dinner.

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