Potato, Leek & Spiced Apple Soup

I love making soup! You just bung a load of things in a pan and cook ’em. I decided to put an apple in this, for sweetness. I kept the potato skins and baked them in a hot oven to use as a garnish.

Potato, Leek & Spiced Apple Soup

1 oz butter + 2 tblsp olive oil
1 medium red potato, carefully peeled, chopped into ½cm cubes
1 large leek, chopped
1 red apple, peeled, cored, cut into ½cm cubes (have another red apple on hand for a garnish if you wish)
½ tsp cumin
2 small carrots, cut into ½cm cubes
½-1 turnip
4 small celery stalks, chopped
500ml chicken stock
¼ cup sherry
2 bay leaves
Salt & pepper
 

1. Heat the oven to 200C. Peel, remove the core and chop the apple into small cubes. In a small bowl, toss them in the cumin.

2. Peel the potato carefully, keeping the skin as it comes off in strips. Cube the potatoes now and put them in a bowl of water to bring out some of the starch. Lay the skins between two sheets of kitchen paper to remove moisture. In a small bowl, toss the skins in some salt, pepper and olive oil. Place on a sheet of foil and bake in the oven for 10mins or until browned and crispy. I’m going to sprinkle paprika over them next time.

3. Drain the potato and dab with kitchen paper to remove moisture. In a large saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil over a medium heat. Add the diced potato and fry for approx 5mins, stirring often, until the edges of the spuds begin to brown.

4. Add the leeks, stir to coat in oil and cook for about 3mins, until the leeks have softened. Add the diced carrot, turnip, celery. Cook for 2mins until the veg has softened. Add the apple, stir, then pour in the chicken stock and sherry and mix well.

5. Bring the liquid to a boil. Add the bay leaves and season with salt and pepper to taste. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 7-10mins, stirring often, until the liquid has thickened and reduced.

6. Remove the bay leaves. Using a hand mixer, blitz the soup down to your desired texture – a few lumps is my preference!

7. To garnish, quarter the second red apple – don’t peel it. Thinly slice it, about ¼cm. A dollop of creme fraiche in the centre is delish. Arrange the apple slices and potato skins on the surface of the soup as if you were a tortured artist, then devour and feel really smug coz you just made a yummy, healthy soup from a recipe you made up in your head.

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