Sunday, April 12, 2009

Leek, Coriander and Coconut soup

Recipes evolve in strange ways. This soup started as an idea - Leek and Coriander soup. Coriander seeds that is not the green stuff that has all died away now anyway. These two make a beautifull combination especially in a pie with halved or quartered boiled eggs popped in. And as I was stirring the base of leeks, onion and celery whilst they cooked I kept smelling the strangest thing - coconut, so a quick search of the larder uncovered a tin of coconut milk and in it went as well and a creamy soup with a hint of spice was born . . .

- Put a big leek, half an onion and a stick of celery all peeled and roughly chopped as required into a saucepan with some butter and olive oil and left to fry slowly until all meltingly soft and fragrant.
- Add in two teaspoonfulls of ground coriander seeds, a sage leaf and a small potato peeled and chopped. Stir and cook for a further couple of minutes.

You could use just leeks of course but I like the combination of leek and onion and the celery was in the fridge anyway and it all goes to add more depth to the ultimate flavor. I always cook my spices in oil as well, either as part of the base or separately in some oil or butter if I am adding them at the end. I find that if I don't they have a sort of powdery taste, but also I love the way the fragrances come out as you warm them through in the hot oil.

- Pour in a pint and a quarter of vegetable stock turn the heat up until it comes to a gentle boil and simmer until the potato is soft, say fifteen minutes or so.
- Blend it all smooth and return to the pan along with a third of a tin of coconut milk - 100 mls or so. Taste it to see, you don't want the coconut to over power everything else.
- Add some salt and pepper if you think it needs it (mine did) and gently reheat.

Mild and creamy as it is, you need a bit of contrast to stop it becoming sickly so serve with a good squeeze of lime juice or even better do what I did and make a simple salsa of chopped tomato, chilli and lime zest and juice.

It was just what I needed today and hence absolutely delicious.

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Holler said...

This sounds delicious Peter!

Peter said...

Thankyou, even Nicola (not your greatest fan of leek soup) liked it!

Amanda said...

Oh this looks really good, leeks and coconut just seem weird, but it must be supremely creamy. I wonder if I can use this with a little rice noodles and chicken strips. Thanks for the recipe!

Jodi said...

I am such a fan of celery in soup base (the inner leaves have tremendous flavour!) and I love the unusual combination that you've built onto it here. I'm keeping this recipe in my back pocket for a rainy Sunday afternoon, when something smooth and comforting is required.

Also, love the update to the site design -- looks great, Peter.


Peter said...

Thanks Jodi, the old site did not display correctly in google chrome so I thought I would move things around a bit . . .

Amanda - my soup was quite thick so I would thin it down somewhat if adding noodles, but does sound a great idea . . .

Pherenike said...

Mmm this one sounds good too. It may be the beginning of an official Winter of Soup for me.

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