Miji à la king – African Pea Soup

» Posted on Feb 28, 2005 in African Recipes | 0 comments

Miji à la king – African Pea Soup

February in Kenya has brought glorious weather. Clear blue skies and warm breezes that make this country such a paradise.

If you still feel the winter chill here is something to warm your body and your soul and lift your spirits:

A healthy “green” African soup made from winter-stored peas, with a little ham for strength and some African Champagne* to make the sun shine in!!

So here it is: Miji à la king

Miji: Kikuyu for ‘peas’ (midgie)

List of Ingredients

  • 1 pound of frozen peas thawed out (or canned)
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • ½ cup of finely chopped celery
  • 1 cooked and chopped potato
  • 6 ounces of small cubed fresh cooked ham
  • ½ pint of low fat chicken stock
  • a pinch of grated lemon peel
  • 2 tbs. butter
  • a little Virgin Olive oil
  • ½ cup of light sour cream
  • ½ cup of natural applesauce
  • 6 ounces of small cubed fresh cooked ham
  • a good handful of chopped fresh basil and parsley

Seasonings and garnish:

  • ½ teaspoon of Creole seasoning
  • a dash of coriander
  • a sprinkle of nutmeg
  • 5 drops of Tabasco, or more
  • 3 good squirts of Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce, or more
  • fresh ground pepper

Plus you’ll need

  • Some freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 2 freshly baked Baguette (French bread)
  • And most importantly: The Champagne!! (See notes below)

Don’t let the list of ingredients put you off; this delicious thick broth is dead easy to make: Before you start, make sure your Champagne is chilled.

  1. Assemble all your ingredients
  2. Fry the onion and celery in some Olive oil in a saucepan
  3. Add the potatoes and the ham
  4. Now add the chicken stock
  5. Followed by the thawed out drained peas

Let simmer for as long as it takes to open the Champagne and have a long refreshing sip and feel the sun rising… With the open bottle safely in the cooler, proceed to:

Just add the rest of the ingredients: basil, parsley, applesauce and sour cream and butter, while the soup gently simmers, it’s time for another test of the Champagne in the cooler!

Now, in go the seasonings, don’t forget to taste frequently until you’ve got it right to your taste.

Let the broth cool down and purée half of the soup in a processor and leave the rest chunky and hearty, this gives a bit of texture to an otherwise comforting broth.

Return the thick puree to the broth and blend. And now get ready for the magic touch:
Reheat the soup and add enough Champagne to archieve the consistency you want.

Pour into earthen bowls, garnish with the grated cheese
And serve with the baguette, and of course:
the chilled Champagne, and feel the African sunshine enter your heart!

Some notes on the Champagne Apart from the obvious precious French varieties, there are other excellent Champagne’s available. They are commonly called “Sparkling wines”. (This is because only those grown in the French region of Champagne are entitled to the name.)

South African Champagne

Wines from South Africa are considered to be among the best in the world. I would recommend using a South African dry sparkling wine to make this simple but delicious meal into a memorable event for you and your friends.

*Sparkling apple juice can serve as a substitute.

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