Monday, 18 October 2010

Spinach, Butter-bean and Sweet Potato Soup

I love the creamy colour of smooth flat butter beans in the kilner jar. I made this, spinach, butter-bean and sweet potato soup because I didn't want to throw away the stock from poaching chicken portions to make a Persian chicken and potato salad, called Salad Olivier.

I was also making a Sophie Dahl recipe of baked onions with grilled salmon that required the small red onions to be cooked in seasoned water for 20 minutes before baking...I couldn't just throw away all that goodness, and so this soup was born.

Ingredients for four people:
  • Two pints of hot vegetable or chicken stock
  • A large handful of dried butter-beans soaked as long as possible in hot water or one can of ready cooked beans
  • A couple of handfuls of roughly chopped baby spinach leaves
  • One medium sized sweet potato cut up into cubes
  • A couple of sticks of celery, sliced thinly
  • One medium sized carrot, peeled and sliced
  • Two or three medium sized potatoes, peeled and sliced
  • Sea salt and crushed black pepper to season

  • Method:
    Simply place all the ingredients into a heavy saucepan and cook until everything is tender about thirty to forty minutes. It couldn't be easier

    I used a special cooks trick that I've learned from cookery writer Nigel Slater and used the rind I'd saved from a piece of Parmesan Cheese...It's a magical ingredient dropped into the soup it just melts away leaving a lovely flavour but not a cheesy one!! This soup was really delicious and I'm convinced that although all the ingredients do have distinctive flavours it's the cheese rind that brought the flavours together to make a very tasty vegetable broth...I will definitely be making this again using Nigel Slater's tip.

    ...this is lovely with home made spelt bread rolls...

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