The Circus Gardener's Kitchen

seasonal vegetarian recipes with a side helping of food politics

broccoli, pea and mint soup

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Earth Overshoot Day is the day in the calendar when humankind has used up the equivalent of a whole year’s worth of the Earth’s natural resources.

When I began this blog in 2013, Earth Overshoot day fell on 20 August. This year it fell on 29 July. Each year the date gets earlier, solemnly marking our continuing failure to adapt towards a more sustainable pattern of existence.

To understand how rapidly our situation is worsening, the first year that Overshoot Day was calculated was 1986, when the date was 30 October.

Here in the UK, we used up the equivalent of a year’s worth of natural resources on 17 May. If the rest of the world consumed resources at the same rate as the UK, we would need two and a half Earths to be able to live sustainably.

But there are no other Earths and there is no planet B.

This means there are only two possible solutions to this growing crisis – either we adapt to live sustainably or we wipe ourselves out as a species.

Our blindly unsustainable way of living has already propelled us beyond the time when change is simply an option. Sooner rather than later change will be forced upon us as it becomes increasingly impossible to ignore the cold, hard, bankrupt reality that lies beneath the way we live now.

On that happy note, let’s move on to the recipe.

This is a delicious soup, a real taste of summer. It’s also incredibly easy to make. Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.

broccoli, pea and mint soup


300 g broccoli, including stalks, roughly chopped
159 g fresh, or frozen, peas
120 g potatoes, peeled and chopped
15 g fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1.2 litres veg stock

1. Pour the oil into a pan or skillet and place over a medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and fry, stirring, for five minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the garlic, peas and broccoli. Stir for 2 minutes. Add most of the chopped mint, reserving a tablespoonful for serving, then add the stock. Stir to combine then simmer for 30 minutes, by which time the broccoli should be tender. Remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool.

2. Blend the soup until smooth, using a food processor or blender. You will need to do this in batches.

3. To serve, reheat the soup gently in a clean pan but do not allow it to boil. Serve in bowls with a scattering of the reserved mint leaves.

Categories: dairy free, gluten free, vegan, vegetarian


8 replies

  1. Looks so appetizing! Love the addition fresh mint leaves in here.

  2. The soup looks great, the overshoot looks depressing.

  3. The obvious question asks how do we make people stop, look, learn and care since little may happen in their lifetime . . . and do something about it ; ; ; you are talking about a minuscule 35 year time difference since you began taking note and look at the picture ! The ‘me’ syndrome is well and rampant !!!! Of immediate satisfying matters you have combined two favourite soups – must try the enriched duo 🙂 !

    • Thank you Eha. The need to change will be forced on us soon enough. The rise to power of the Trumps and Bolsonaros of this world merely bring that day closer. Let’s hope it will not be too late. Steve x

  4. I hadn’t heard of Overshoot Day until now, but it really puts things in perspective. And how sobering it is that it just keeps on getting closer and closer. Sometimes it does feel that as a society we’ve gotten rather numb to it though – it seems so hard to instigate action. But continuing to write about it and share this information with others is an important contribution in the struggle – so thank you!
    Also – beautiful soup! I love the different layers of green flavours going into it.

    • Thank you 🙂 ! We can all make small differences that collectively make an impact, but we really need major governmental commitment to change, which in most cases is sadly lacking. Steve

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