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More autumn soup… cabbages and pumpkins

More soup for you to relish the autumnal colours and warming textures, for as well as the deep savouriness of a bowl of clear broth full of vegetables and pasta  I also enjoy soups that have more of a velvety texture. Usually that involved blending them and using some root vegetables.  Pumpkin and autumn and winter squashes also give that lovely smooth mouth feel.

If you remember, whilst I was in Aldeburgh, I had lunch in Orford at the Pump Street Bakery, and eulogised their Butternut Squash and Apple  soup  I meant to give proper amounts for that but got sidetracked, so here we are:

My version, based on Joanna’s twitter instructions:

  • One large or two medium onions, finely chopped
  • Two leeks finely sliced
  • Two tablespoons olive oil
  • One medium sized Butternut or Crown Prince Squash, peeled seeded and cut into small chunks.
  • Two eating apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped.
  • One litre of chicken or vegetable stock
  • Apple Juice (amount depending on thickness of soup)
  • To serve:  sour cream or Greek yoghurt, shredded fresh apple (skin on), Extra Virgin olive oil to drizzle

In a pressure cooker,  sweat the onions and leeks in the olive oil until soft but not coloured, add the butternut squash and apple and stir to coat.   Add the stock (if this is fresh stock it will probably need seasoning, but do not season if using stock cube or powder. I used Essential Cuisine vegetable stock powder. ) and bring to pressure. Cook for 15 minutes and allow to reduce pressure slowly.

Blend to a cream either in a liquidiser or using a hand stick blender.   Use the apple juice to dilute until it is the thickness you like. Adjust the seasoning.

Serve with a spoonful of sour cream or Greek yoghurt, a bundle of shredded apple and a drizzle of olive oil.



and here is another one that I made a while back and meant to write up for posterity.

When we are in Madeira, just about every restaurant of every level has this soup on the menu, it must be one of Portugal’s national dishes. Caldo Verde. Green soup. Except it isn’t green, it is just greenly speckled. Do you remember, I mentioned it in passing this February, when I was talking about cabbages and kings?

Basically it is a potato and onion soup, with the addition of very finely shredded green kale – I use kale or spring greens most of the time, the leaves are thin and can be cut much more finely than a larger Savoy or other green cabbage.  My recipe comes from a favourite recipe book that I have had for a long time,  Portuguese Homestyle Cookery by Ana Patuleia Ortins.

Portuguese Homestyle Cookery

Caldo Verde

This is an American cookbook, and so for we British, here is how I translated the recipe.

  • 1 litre water
  • 5 medium sized floury potatoes, King Edward type, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
  • Salt or vegetable stock powder to taste (start with 1 heaped tsp and adjust later)
  • 500g spring greens or kale, well washed, with central ribs removed.
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • roughly 100g chorizo cut into thin slices.

Put the water, potatoes, onion and salt/stock powder into a pressure cooker, bring to high pressure and cook for 10 minutes, then drop the pressure quickly. Alternatively, put into a saucepan and cook until the potatoes are thoroughly soft, roughly 25 minutes.

Whilst the potatoes and onions cook, prepare the greens.  Take the curly kale or spring greens, remove the central ribs and finely finely finely shred the cabbage into confetti.  Rinse thoroughly.

Once the potatoes have cooked and cooled slightly, puree with a hand blender or liquidiser.  Add in the chiffonade of cabbage and the olive oil and simmer for a further 5 minutes until tender.  Whilst the cabbage cooks, prepare the chorizo garnish. Fry the little slices in a dry pan until the outside is nicely crisp and pop onto kitchen towel to drain.

Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper to taste, pour into bowls and garnish with the chorizo. One slice to be traditional. Several to be greedy like me…

Caldo Verde, the finished soup


It isn’t very beautiful, but it is extremely delicious. I hope you decide to try it!