Broccoli and stilton soup is an English classic. As is, apparently, nettle soup.
We first made nettle soup a year ago. We were well into the first lockdown and would take after-dinner walks around the neighbourhood, the sun low and golden with Spring boofing out over the cherry trees and in the woods, and pushing up nettles all along the edge of the rugby field.
Being in a slightly apocalyptic frame of mind we thought it would be wise (and fun) to try making nettle soup. So we did, and very good it was too.
This year we’d overwintered quite a bit of brassica and kale; the brassica now going a bit to seed and the kale… well. You can have enough kale, let’s put it like that. I thought it would be fun to make ‘green’ and Stilton soup.
So at the weekend I gathered what kale wasn’t too tough and what brassica that didn’t have ‘hen food’ written on it (the threat of bird flu now receding), and after school this evening Jenny took Joshua to the rugby field and gleaned half a shopping bag worth of nettles.
I blanched the nettles for a couple of minutes in salted water, then cold-shocked them. Did the same for the green for the garden, then sautéed some spring onions and garlic in a little olive oil.
Then I added the blanched green and some pepper, and cooked for a couple of minutes. To this I added a couple of pints of hot vegetable bouillon, and a block of Stilton, sliced into marble-sized fragments. Then I let it simmer gently for about 5 minutes, before blending (in batches).
To serve, I warmed it up again, stirred in some double cream, and presented with a slice of (homegrown) chilli pepper.
That should see us through any apocalypse.