There are two traits that are very useful when dealing with this time of year as an allotment holder. Tenacity and inventiveness, I think both are required in equal measure just to keep up with the onslaught of a huge amount of produce maturing at the same time. After all, we all want something delicious to eat in the middle of a cold, dark and damp winter. The freezer is a wonderful tool, one I made good use of last year, mostly just blanching and freezing, but this year I’m trying to aim to have something a little more tempting at my fingertips than blanched runner beans, as tender and tasty as they were.
I am still working hard on my Courgette glut, from only two plants!
Today I thought of goats cheese, young and fresh with an acidic bite which might work with lovely homegrown sweet onions and courgettes. And then, Soup, flew to mind, I love homemade soup, in any guise, I may have mentioned this before!
Courgette and Goats Cheese Soup
(makes rather a lot, a dinner party for sixteen would not be out of the question!)
2 kg Courgettes, diced
750 g Onions, peeled and sliced.
750 g Potatoes, peeled and diced.
300g of a young goats cheese, crumbled.
90g of butter.
20 g or 6 cloves of garlic, sliced.
1 heaped tsp dried oregano
1500 ml of chicken stock
750 ml of milk (in this case skimmed)
284 ml double cream
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp of freshly ground black pepper
Melt the butter gently in a large pan, add onions, gently sweat them until translucent, add garlic and cook for another minute, then add courgettes, potatoes, milk, chicken stock, cream, oregano, salt and pepper.
Simmer until cooked. Blend soup with a hand blender, add cheese and stir well. Check for seasoning and serve.
It is a success, (would I publish it, if it wasn’t!) It has just the right bite of acidity against the fresh sweetness of the courgettes and onions, with just a hint of garlic which allows the true flavours of the ingredients to shine through. Its only fault, which may not be a fault to some is it is perhaps a little rich, I think I will try it with half the amount of double cream next time.