Recipe from Kitchen Secrets by Raymond Blanc.
Maman Blanc would only make soups with water, she never used stock. This recipe is no exception to her rule; there should be enough flavour in the main ingredients. In this soup, I use an interesting technique as I add ice to the watercress to halt the cooking process. This retains the vivid colours of the watercress, as well as the textures, flavour and nutrients. The pepperiness of watercress can vary, so taste it before cooking. If it is quite mild, leave some of the stalks attached to boost the flavour.
Special equipment: blender.
|1/4||Onion, peeled and diced|
|400g||2 large bunches of Watercress (stalks removed) (*1)|
|50g||Spinach, washed and picked (small handful)|
|4 pinches||Sea salt|
|1 pinch||Freshly ground black pepper|
|To serve (optional)|
|4 tbsp||Crème fraîche or Greek yoghurt|
This soup can be prepared well in advance.
To make the soup
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a low heat, add the onion and sweat gently (*2) for 3–5 minutes until softened and translucent. Turn up the heat, add the watercress and spinach and wilt for 2 minutes. Add the boiling water (*3), season with the salt and pepper (*4), and boil for 2 minutes only. Remove from the heat and immediately add the ice to stop the cooking process (*5). Purée the soup in a blender until very smooth.
Reheat if necessary (*6), then taste and correct the seasoning. Serve immediately, in a warmed tureen or individual bowls topped with a spoonful of crème fraîche or Greek yoghurt.
Recipe from Kitchen Secrets by Raymond Blanc, published by Bloomsbury.
Recipe © Raymond Blanc 2011.
Photograph © Jean Cazals 2011.