When Stoves challenged me to re create one of their Chefs recipes from their website I of course accepted the gauntlet laid down before me.
I trawled through the options on their website and settled for Rachel Allens Potato Soup. I wanted something accessible to everyone, but the extra ‘pimped’ up bits of the Chorizo and the Kale Pesto sounded really yummy and sure to brighten up a simple soup into something more special.
You can find Rachels recipe on the Stoves Website here, but it is also recreated with permission below. I found this really easy to make, and really hearty soup.
It would be perfect for a weekend lunch, a starter at a dinner party, or even as a warm canapé or amuse bouche at a party.
- For the soup:
- 25g (1oz) butter
- 425g (15oz) potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 150g (5oz) onions, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 750ml (1pint 8fl.oz) chicken or vegetable stock
- 250ml (8fl.oz) milk, or half milk and half cream (depending on how rich you want it)
- To serve:
- 250g chorizo, cut into half centimeter cubes
- Kale and walnut pesto, see recipe below
- For the kale and walnut pesto:
- 110g (4oz) kale, curly kale or Cavalo Nero, (stalks removed – weigh after removed)
- 1 large clove of garlic, finely crushed or grated
- 50g (2oz) walnuts
- 30g (1oz) finely grated hard cheese, such as Parmesan
- 200ml (7fl.oz) extra virgin olive oil
- 50ml (2fl.oz) more extra virgin olive oil to cover in jar
- A small pinch of salt
Method for the soup
Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the potatoes and onions, season with salt and pepper, stir well and cover with a butter wrapper (if you have one, or greaseproof). Put on the lid and sweat over a gentle heat for 10 mins. Add the stock, bring to the boil and continue cooking until the vegetables are all soft, add the milk or the milk and the cream, then liquidise the soup and season to taste. You may need to add more boiling stock to thin it out if it is too thick.
While the vegetables are cooking fry the chorizo on both sides in a tiny bit of olive oil on a pan. Take off when it is nice and crisp, reserving the rich amber coloured oil. To serve: put a ladle full of the hot soup into warm espresso cups, (or warm bowls), drizzle with a little pesto and top with about 3 or 5 cubes of cooked chorizo and a drizzle of the oil from the pan over the top.
Method for the kale and walnut pesto
Place the walnuts on a tray and roast at 200°C for 4-5 minutes till golden.
Roughly chop the kale then place in a food processor. Whiz for a few minutes until the kale is quite fine (almost as fine as chopped herbs), it will take a few minutes.
Then add the garlic, the roasted hazelnuts and the cheese and whizz till fine. Add the extra virgin olive oil, taste and add a small pinch of salt if necessary. Pour into a sterilised jar, or 2 small jars, bang down on the work top to remove any air bubbles then pour over the 50ml extra virgin olive oil, cover with lid and put in fridge. This will keep in fridge for 6 months. When you want to use some, pour the olive oil off the top into a clean small bowl then spoon out desired amount of pesto, bang down again on the worktop and clean around the inside of the jar with kitchen paper before pouring the olive oil back in to cover, as before.
I’ve since used the pesto recipe as a pasta sauce as well – so it’s really quite versatile.
Disclosure: Stoves sent me Sainsbury’s vouchers to cover the cost of ingredients for this post.