|wild leek soup|
I mean to say - a hail storm in May? Monsoon conditions in London again? Just like last year, it has started to rain; this does not bode well for the summer. But at least I can take my mind off things and ease my sustainable conscience (as well as reducing food miles), by making a thrifty soup from a deliciously dark home-made and very wobbly chicken stock (made from last Sunday's roast chicken carcass) and my foraged wild leeks.
This really is a heart-warming soup, which served with freshly baked sourdough bread was the perfect antidote to my bad weather blues.
|wild leek flowers|
Skill level: Easy
2 tbsp olive oil
a knob of butter
2 x shallots, finely chopped
1 x medium potato, diced
2 x tomatoes, de-seeded and roughly chopped
1 litre stock (use a good quality vegetable or chicken stock)
a large bunch of wild leek leaves, roughly chopped (separate out the stalks from the leaves; keep aside any flowers, for decoration)
a splash of white wine, sherry or vermouth
salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the oil and butter in a large saucepan. Add the shallots, stir to coat and cook over a low heat until the shallots have softened, but not coloured. Stir occasionally to ensure that the shallots don't catch or colour. (This may take up to 20 minutes!)
- After 10 minutes, add the diced potato and stir to ensure that it is well mixed in. Continue to cook gently for 5 minutes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and stock and then bring to the boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 10 minutes before adding the wild leek stalks. Simmer for 5 minutes before adding the wild leek leaves. Continue to simmer for another 3 to 5 minutes.
- Set aside to cool before liquidising. You may have read my thoughts on this before but essentially do not try to blend when hot, as this can be dangerous, particularly if using a jug blender. A combination of hot soup, a build-up of steam and vibration, can cause the hot liquid to explode out of the blender. Safer to let it cool a little!)
- Season to taste and gently reheat with a splash of white wine, sherry or vermouth.
- Serve, topped with a few wild leek flowers and loads of fresh crusty bread.
- A swirl of cream might be nice too, or dollop of wild leek pesto, wild leek and chilli sauce or parsley, walnut and blue cheese pesto on top, to serve.