Autumn is by far my favourite season. It has sprinklings of beautiful soft rain, gives us perfect mild sunshine & the trees start dotting the garden floor with all their magnificently, fiery leaves. And there's soup. Comforting, thick, delicious soup (which is ALWAYS an excuse for warm, crusty bread). This recipe is very simple, but packs a huge, green health-punch while maintaining the reassuring embrace that a good soup should.
Yield: Serves 4 as a main meal & 6 as a starter
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion - roughly chopped
2 sticks of celery - roughly chopped
1 medium leek - properly washed & roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic - chopped
4 medium potatoes - peeled & cut into roughly 2cm cubes
1.5 litres fresh chicken or vegetable stock - warmed
10 medium courgettes
200 g baby spinach
freshly ground black pepper
lemon juice to taste
Chopped fresh Italian Parsley
- Place a largeish soup pot onto the stove on medium heat.
- Add the olive oil to the pot.
- Once hot, add the onion, celery & leek & cook until soft & golden - do not allow to brown.
- Add the garlic & allow to cook for a few minutes - watch that it doesn't burn or this will cause a bitter flavour.
- Add the chopped potatoes & allow to fry for a few minutes with the rest of the vegetables
- Add the hot stock to the pot, bring to the boil & then turn down the heat to a simmer.
- Add the courgettes.
- Cook for a further 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender & cooked through.
- Add the baby spinach to the pot & take the pot off the heat.
- Use a stick blender or transfer the soup to a free standing blender & blend until smooth.
- Season with salt, freshly ground black pepper & a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to taste.
- Serve in pre-heated bowls with a dash of cream, sprinkling of chilli flakes & some fresh italian parsley.
- For some added texture make your own croutons ahead of time by roughly chopping up a ciabatta into 3cm chunks. Place into a baking tray, toss with olive oil & some freshly chopped garlic & parsley. Pop into the oven on 150'C and bake until crispy throughout, golden & crunchy.