Very much in wintry mode this weekend, so I made this richly delicious soup and a trusty 30 minute soda bread … Make the bread first and by the time you’ve made the soup, it will be ready! Enjoy …
Spinach Pea Walnut & Chorizo soup
This soup came about because I had some nearly dead spinach, a dry old bit of chorizo, and 1/2 a pack of peas in the fridge that needed to be used up. (my ice box is quite literally a box of ice that you couldn’t even squeeze a lolly stick into)
Rich, warming and velvety, the addition of chorizo, walnuts and chilli oil stops it from being too smooth and pedestrian. Serve with a yummy bread – something dark and crusty like soda, rye, sourdough, or even black bread would be great.
good glug of olive oil
1 onion thinly sliced
1/2 pack frozen peas (big ugly ones are fine)
1/2 pack (150g) fresh spinach
3 inches of cooking chorizo, skinned and chopped finely
handful of fresh mint, roughly chopped
1pt chicken or vegetable stock
a few walnuts (unsalted, skinned and coarsely chopped)
good glug of milk, creme fraiche or cream
glug of chilli & garlic oil to finish – or you can add finely chopped garlic clove and handful of chopped green or red chilli when frying the onion at the start.
- gently fry the onion in the olive oil until transparent and soft
- add the chorizo and fry for 2-3 mins
- add the peas, some stock & 1/2 the mint and simmer for 5-10 mins
- once peas are softened blend in the pan with a hand blender (or blitz in a food processor)
- add the spinach, black pepper, the rest of the stock and simmer until spinach is wilted (a couple of mins)
- add the rest of the mint and a glug of milk/creme fraich/cream and blitz again – smooth or lumpy – both are good!
- add the walnuts & more black pepper to taste
Soda bread. Crusty. Nutty. Perfect with soup.
The high proportion of oats in this recipe leads to a fluffier, moister, softer bread …
Preheat oven to 200/400/Gas 6
350g plain/wholemeal flour
150g oats (porridge or rolled)
300 ish ml/g buttermilk or live/greek yoghurt or milk
handful of sesame, poppy sunflower, whatever you like, of seeds
1/2 level tsp salt
1level tsp baking powder – don’t overdo it or it won’t rise.
1/2 tsp sugar (or treacle)
1. Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl, mixing well with a metal spoon.
2. Add buttermilk/yoghurt/milk
3. Mix lightly with spoon until a loose dough is formed. Do not overmix.
4. Turn out onto floured board. Flour hands if necessary.
5. Do NOT knead – just shape into a round. Sprinkle with more seeds or oats
6. Cut a deep cross in the top (to let the fairies out)
7. Place on floured baking sheet.
8. Bake for 30 mins.
9. It should sound hollow when you tap the bottom. If it feels too dense (the oats will make it more moist than normal soda bread) then turn upside down and bake for another 5 or so mins and check again …
9. Let cool on rack yeah right! – slather in butter and enjoy.
10. Cover with a clean tea towel to (a) hide from others, and (b) keep the crust crusty and the inside moist.
I just finished the last scrap of this soup today … What’s your favourite easy comfort winter soup?