Another week has passed, another Monday has arrived, so it is time for a new soup of the soup challenge. I have another very easy but fine soup ready for you. All you need is 1 shallot, 2 courgettes and 2 heads of chicory. You may not know chicory very well, but is a well loved vegetable in Belgium, where I am from. It is a winter vegetable, the season runs form October until April.
If you look well, you do find them in most supermarkets in the UK as well, but they come in tiny packages of two heads, compared to the big bags you would buy them in in Belgium. If we eat chicory now, we usually eat it as part of a salad, with some tomatoes for example, or as an ingredient for soup as I did today. It gives some extra pinch to the soup, a little bit peppery and firm.
The taste of chicory can be a little bit bitter, so not the easiest for most kids to like. It is the outer leaves and the hard bit in the middle that are the most bitter. So leave those out if you are serving chicory to your kids or if you don’t like bitter yourself, that way you just keep the subtle peppery taste and the crunchiness of the with water packed leaves.
Back to the soup now! We usually add some cream cheese with herbs to this soup and today I made some croutons from old bread to go with it as well. I cut two slices of bread into small cubes and fried them slowly in some olive oil in a pan. That gives you those lovely tasty croutons.
I still need those little extras to get a nice smile on my kids’ face when they get a good portion of soup. But it is getting better and I am convinced if I keep going, and don’t give in, if I keep adding those croutons, cheese or even lardons as long as necessary, they will start to really enjoy it and value the soup for all it is worth!
Even if they don’t really like the soup, they will still fish out the croutons and have the soup that sticks on the croutons. That will give them another little taster session at least. My boys sometimes prefer to have their soup cold, even in winter. I don’t mind, but I do find it strange! It is worth to try and serve it that way if you have funny kids like that.
Soup of the week: Courgette and chicory soup
|Prep:||Cook:||Yield: 1 l||Total:|
- 2 big or 4 small courgettes
- 2 heads of chicory
- 1 shallot
- 1 cube of vegetable stock
- Cut the vegetables in chunks, they don't need to be very small as we are blending the soup at the end. There is no need to peel the courgettes, just give them a good wash. The peel will give the lovely green colour to the soup.
- First fry the shallot in some olive oil on a low to medium heat. Keep stirring until the shallot is soft and translucent.
- Then add the courgettes and the chicory. Add a little bit of water so the shallot doesn't burn at the bottom, no more than an inch will do.
- Leave this to steam for about 5 minutes. Now put the kettle on and add boiling water until the vegetables are almost submerged. Leave to simmer 5 to 10 minutes longer until the vegetables are nice and soft. Don't leave to cook for too long as more of the nutrients would disappear.
- Now blend the soup.
- Season to taste. I would add 1 cube of vegetable stock and some pepper.
from More Than Just Carrots