Fennel and Vegetable Soup Recipe

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I’m not really sorry to be posting another soup recipe:  it is cold and this one is incredibly easy and quick.

There’s no blitzing and I reckon it was ready for the table in under half an hour. Plus, it makes use of a very seasonal (and that means CHEAP!) ingredient: fennel.

The original recipe is a fennel minestrone, by Arthur Potts Dawson, an eco friendly British chef.

I tweaked quantities quite a bit and also thought that it would be far easier to chop the vegetables, rather than grate them (grating creates washing up!). I was also concerned that if the vegetables were grated the finished product could look a bit … mushy.

To begin – heat some olive oil in your favourite soup making pan and gently sauté 1 finely chopped leek.

I had one giant fennel (bought for the princely sum of 98 cents!) so I cut that in half – which worked out at about 400g of fennel (yes, it was huge) – and roughly chopped it, and then added to the leek.

I then added two handfuls of risoni pasta (I have small hands). I happened to have risoni but you could use any shape or break up spaghetti or fettucine. Really – put in as much as you want but remember that it does expand when it cooks and it will thicken up the soup.

Finally, add stock (I used some chicken stock we had leftover!) and cook. You only need to cook until the pasta is done which is what makes this soup so quick.

Add a coarsely chopped courgette/zucchini about 5 minutes before you’re ready to serve – you don’t want that to turn to mush.

Dawson’s recipe uses a pangritata to finish the dish but I really couldn’t be bothered going outside. However, I did have a jar of pesto open in the fridge, so I stirred a generous teaspoon of that through my bowl.

Finally, a sprinkle of pepper and salt and you have a super healthy, super cheap and super tasty meal in under 30 minutes. No excuses for takeaway!

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