The famed 14th-century French chef Taillevent made pea soup with milk, chicken, and eggs. Ours is far simpler. When buying fresh green peas—which appear in markets under several names, among them shell peas, english peas, and garden peas—look for pods that are bright green in color and snap crisply when you bend them. Although peas often become available in the spring, they are usually at their best in the summer months.
6 cups Chicken Stock
3 russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
6 scallions, white part only, chopped
4 lbs. fresh peas, shelled to yield 4 cups
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
1. Bring chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add potatoes to stock, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
2. Add scallions; cook for 5 minutes. Add peas, increase heat to medium, and cook until just tender (to keep fresh pea taste), about 5 minutes.
3. Purée pea mixture in a blender or food processor. Press through a strainer using a spoon. Return briefly to heat. Season with salt, pepper, and chives.