You may be wondering about blending/processing the soup when you’re in a rustic cottage with fancy kitchen equipment in relatively short supply; the answer? A masher. I’ve gone for the chunky, natural, thick style of soup where your dollop of creme fraiche sits tantalisingly on top before melting gently into its surroundings. This requires a few gentle mashes with a potato masher (or a fork!) to break up the softening peas, but has no need for a kitchen sprayed with bits of green (I’m presuming everyone is as good at blitzing soup as I am), or a food processor to be lugged across the country to keep you company for the weekend.
When you’re spending a few extra quid to have a weekend away (completely necessary in the deep, dark armpit of winter when summer seems like a distant dream), eating hearty and delicious food that doesn’t cost a fortune or take too much time away from fireside lounging is a pleasure that can’t be topped.
Add that to long walks, cosy fireside lounging, bubbling river sounds, deep nights sleep and a few (hundred) gin and tonics and you’ve got yourself the perfect weekend. If anyone is interested in having a go, this is the gorgeous cottage we stayed at – Ivy Cottage, Lustleigh – you can also be safe in the knowledge it has a masher for your peas.
Cottage style pea & bacon soup
Serve the pea and bacon soup with a teaspoon of creme fraiche on top, a sprinkling of crispy bacon bits and some crispy croutons or a slice of buttered toast.