Sunday, 29 March 2015

Spring greens soup

Spring greens soup
I love it when the garden reawakens in spring and starts giving us gifts of fresh greens and pretty flowers. I try to weed the nettles from the garden, as they tend to take over, but there is a big patch behind the greenhouse where I keep my nettles contained, mostly for the butterflies and bees.
Last week's soup box had ingredients and a recipe for a French soup with chervil and mustard. I added to it the freshly picked garlic green leaves, thyme and nettle tips (tops? I can never remember what's the right word, but you know what I mean; you only need the very top few young leaves).

Spring greens soup
1 medium carrot
2 celery sticks
2tbsp olive oil
green onions (I used one with a big sized bulb)
2 cloves of garlic
a small bag of salad potatoes
1tbsp Dijon mustard
2tbsp chervil, chopped
a handful of fresh nettle tops, chopped
several leaves of fresh garlic greens
1tsp fresh thyme

Peel the carrot and chop finely. Fry in the olive oil with the finely chopped celery and the white part of spring onions. Add the garlic and keep frying until the vegetables have softened. Slice the salad potatoes into discs (just wash them and keep the skin on). Fry for a couple of minutes, stirring, with the added Dijon mustard.
Put all the vegetables in the pan, cover with hot water and bring to boil. Cook for 5 minutes, then lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the nettle tops, fresh chopped garlic leaves and green part of spring onions, thyme and chervil in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
Serve with a nice chunk of bread. It is also lovely with a tablespoon of Greek style yogurt stirred in it.

It's a delightful light spring soup, bursting with flavours. If you haven't eaten nettles, now is a good time to do some foraging, while the nettles are still young and not stringy. They are very healthy, a good source of iron, but also very tasty too.

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