16 Apr 2010
Despite the sun in the sky and the blossom on the trees there’s still a definite nip in the air this week. At this time of year there are lots of flavoursome young vegetables available and a simple soup is a great way to showcase them. I’d suggest using the below base of garlic, onion, celery and carrot then getting creative with the rest of the ingredients!
Spring vegetable soup
1 tbsp butter
1 clove of garlic
1 small white onion
1 small stick of celery
1 small leek
1 small courgette
Handful of green beans, mange tout or similar
Handful of fresh or frozen peas
Handful of spring greens or cabbage
1 fresh bay leaf
Small sprig of fresh parsley
Small sprig of fresh chervil or tarragon
750ml homemade or good quality chicken stock
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
Peel and finely dice the garlic, onion and carrot, wash and finely dice the celery. Place a large heavy bottom pan on a low heat and melt the butter before adding the vegetables. Cook on a low heat for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile peel, wash and finely slice the leek, courgette and beans or similar. Add to the pan along with the fresh bay, stir gently and cook gently for a further few minutes.
Add the stock and stir well, increase the heat until the liquid begins to boil then reduce the heat and leave to quietly simmer for 5 minutes. Use a tablespoon to skim off any froth and discard.
Wash and finely shred the cabbage and add to the soup along with the peas and cook for a further 2-3 minutes.
Before serving add the lemon juice, roughly chopped fresh herbs and season well to taste. The soup can be served with a swirl of fresh cream or dollop of crème fraiche.