|WATERCRESSSOUP - Watercress soup, hot or cold
This thick, creamy soup is equally good whether served hot
or cold. I have had watercress soup in restaurants, and my
mother sometimes makes it, too, but this recipe is my own
interpretation of the idea.
INGREDIENTS (Serves 4)
1 bunch watercress
1/2 onion (medium sized, coarsely chopped.)
1 potato (medium sized, roughly diced.)
1/2 clove garlic (chopped)
15 ml butter (or your favourite oil or margarine)
750 ml water
15 ml heavy cream (Whipping cream is roughly the same
30 g black caviar (lump fish roe is fine.)
4 water biscuits (bite size)
pinch salt and pepper (to taste)
(1) Gently fry onion and garlic in a small amount of
butter until transparent.
(2) Season lightly with salt and pepper, and add water
and potato and boil until soft.
(3) Pick over watercress and chop 4 or five sprigs and
set them aside. Pur e the onion mixture in a
blender. Add most of watercress, blend, re-season
to taste and return to heat.
(4) Bring mixture to boil and simmer for 2 or three
minutes. Stir gently to prevent soup from stick-
ing to bottom. Remove from heat.
This is the decision point. Either set aside to cool,
then chill, or carry on to serve the soup hot.
(5) Stir in cream and chopped watercress. Heap a tea-
spoon of caviar on each of the water biscuits and
float one on each bowl of soup immediately prior
Use the minimum amount of butter, oil, or margarine that
will turn the onion transparent. Those who are particularly
diet-conscious could dispense with this step, and with the
cream. Don't overdo the garlic, 1/2 a small clove is ample
since it is a background flavour, not one that you should be
A caution regarding seasoning. Potatoes absorb a lot of
salt so you may find it undersalted. The caviar on the
other hand, is very salty. This, for me, is a delightful
and important contrast. Guests can always add extra salt if
Water biscuits are made by Carr's, amongst others, and can
be found in most supermarkets, possibly in the gourmet food
section. They are variously known as water biscuits, water
crackers and table water crackers. To my mind the best for
eating with cheese are the high-bake ones, but the regular
type are better for this recipe. If you can't find them,
then any round dry bland low-salt cracker will do.
A 60 g jar of lumpfish caviar costs a little under $3.00,
but it does keep in the fridge so you can get two batches of
four servings from one jar. I suppose if budget is a prime
consideration one could dispense with the caviar, too, but
that would be like serving a martini without the olives.