A recipe from John:
Springing a Leek
It’s the end of May and spring is well in hand although today is wet and cold. This grizzled old veteran of a leek was the last man standing from a field of 100 planted out last summer – let’s say he was the Centurion. He was harvested just before he could bolt and push out a woody flower stalk.
For today’s cold weather I wanted a variation on the usual leek and potato soup so I spiced this up with Cumin, Garam Marsala and a little hot Cayenne Pepper. I was aiming for something with lots of flavour and a bit of a kick, but not too curry-like. As I was planning to use the blender, I included all of the green leaves of the leek which gave the final dish a deep, mellow green colour.
- One big old leek
- Three fat cloves of garlic
- One medium onion and/or a couple of shallots
- Two small potatoes
- Two small chillies
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp garam marsala
- 1 tsp cayenne chilli powder
- 1 tsp of dried coriander leaf
- Salt, pepper, dash of Worcester Sauce
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 litre of vegetable stock
- Fry the garlic and onions for 5 minutes in a large frying pan, then add the (diced) potato and continue to fry for a few more minutes.
- Add all the leek (fairly well chopped down) to the frying pan and allow to reduce for a few minutes.
- Then add in the spice mix and allow this to coat the vegetables in the frying pan.
- Place the vegetable stock in a large pan and add in the ingredients from the frying pan.
- Simmer the whole lot gently for around 30 to 40 minutes.
- Then use a hand blender to smooth the mixture.
- Check the taste and add additional seasoning if needed, or some water if the texture is too thick.
- Finally, garnish with finely chopped fresh chilli and serve – this should make four good portions.