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FRESH HERB SOUP WITH CHEDDAR RECIPE BY TALLYRAND

Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme . . . . .

I have been kept busy this last few weeks, replanting both my personal and work kitchen's herb gardens. Now I am far from a green fingered person, but as a Chef I do love to have a ready supply of fresh herbs at my finger tips when I need them.

Besides all the usual herbs like chives, coriander, thyme, etc. This year I also planted some kaffir lime trees, the leaves of which are used extensively in Thai cuisine and impart a subtle citric flavour to dishes. I always have a problem getting fresh ones and I do hate dried herbs. There is no substitute for fresh . . . so from next year I will have an ample supply just outside the door.

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Parsely from the BBC childrens series The HerbsWe had an abundance of herbs in the kitchen this week and many were getting to the use or discard stage. As I hate wastage I put them to good use by putting this following dish on my training restaurant's menu as the 'Soup cauldron of the day'. My trainee chef students were not over enthused with the idea but then they are so young and inexperienced . . . a bright green soup? Ahhhhh these convenience foods that people are brought up on these days have a lot to answer for . . . but always happy to let the food speak for itself there were soon many converts and of course the guests just loved it!

Now Down Under it is entering winter and just the right time of the year for a hearty soup, while those of you in the northern hemisphere are all planning your summer hols, dusting off the bikinis, waxing up the boards, getting out the shorts ready for the hot, summer sun. Fear not . . . adjust this soup, by either thinning it down or leaving out the flour altogether, chill it and it is also a great summer soup!

The herbs and amounts I have suggested here are suggestions only, the intensity of flavours will depend on the freshness of your herbs, so please feel free to adjust to suit your own tastes. The spinach will add an extra depth of colour without distracting from the herb flavours.

If spinach is not available just use more herbs, if fresh herbs are not available, replace them with spinach and make a whole new soup! That's what cooking is all about, fun, experimentation and new flavours and dishes . . . as long as it tastes good, it's a winner!

Ingredients

milk
1
lt
chicken stock
1
lt
garlic cloves
5
pc
onion - small
1
pc
cheddar cheese
150
gm
butter
150
gm
flour
100
gm
chives
1
tbs
parsley
50
gm
coriander
50
gm
dill
50
gm
spinach leaves
100
gm

Method

  • Combine the milk and stock and add the sliced garlic and finely chopped onion
  • Place over a low heat and allow the flavours to infuse for 15 minutes
  • Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a low to medium heat, add the flour and stir continuously for 5 minutes to cook the flour
  • Slowly add the milk / stock mixture (approx. 200 mls at a time), stirring thoroughly each time to remove any flour lumps and achieve a smooth finish
  • When all combined bring to a boil and allow to simmer very gently for 1 hour
  • Stir through the cheddar, taste, and add more cheese or season if required - it should have a light cheese flavour only

Chef's Tip:

This soup should not be left standing on the heat too long once the herb purée has been added or it will turn from a fresh, bright green to an unappetising dull, grey / green colour.

Enjoy and bon appetit . . . . .

Chef's terminology:

  lt
=
litres   tsp = teaspoon
  ml
=
millelitres   tbs = tablespoon
  kg
=
kilograms   sq = sufficient quantity (add to taste)
  gm
=
grams   pc = piece, meaning a whole one of

Tallyrand
Recipe from professional
Chef Tallyrand

Email Hub-UK : info@hub-uk.com