Speedy Springtime Soup

I love it when an extra person for dinner throws your catering plans out of kilter. I’m not being funny – I actually do… It’s like I can host my very own episode of ‘Ready Steady Cook’ (remember that?) and challenge myself to produce something tasty with the ingredients already in the house.

So last night, Munkyman and I were going to have a simple chickpea & chard stew but as hubster was home way earlier than expected, we had an extra mouth to feed. Which meant that we had this soup instead – and all I did to stretch the recipe was increase the amount of stock from 200ml to 800ml! Totally simple but totally worked!

It was a really light, refreshing meal – perfect for springtime when you don’t want anything too heavy for dinner but still want something warming. This is low-carb, gluten, wheat and dairy free so good for anyone with dietary restrictions. And it was ready in less than 30 minutes!

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Warming Fresh Springtime Soup (serves 3)

My thanks to Riverford for the original ‘chard & chickpeas’ that this is based on. 

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced

1 small onion, finely diced

1 bag chard, stems finely chopped and leaves roughly shredded

1 bay leaf

4 garlic cloves, crushed

400g cooked chickpeas

1/8 tsp chilli powder

800ml veg stock

handful chopped parsley

juice of 1/2 lemon

  1. Sweat the onion, carrot, chard stalks, bay leaf and garlic in 1tbs of olive oil for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are soft but not coloured. Season well.
  2. Add the chard leaves, chickpeas, chilli powder and stock. Cook gently for about 10 minutes to allow everything to warm through and the chard to wilt.
  3. Season to taste, add the lemon juice and parsley, stir and serve.

To make this a little heartier, you could serve this with crusty bread (although of course it would mean that it wouldn’t be gluten or wheat free) or it would make a great starter if served in smaller portions.

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