Ingredients (For 5-6 Servings):
2 Medium onions
2 cloves garlic
2 large potatoes
1/2 kg vegetables - (capsicums, french beans tomatoes, mushrooms, celery, spinach, green peas, turnips.)
1 tbsp bland oil or butter
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp black pepper powder
1 tsp salt
5 cups any stock or water
A small bunch fresh coriander leaves
Slice the onions. Chop or crush the garlic, if used. Peel wash and cut the potatoes in medium dice wash and prepare the other vegetables as given in the recipe for vegetables stock and chop roughly. Wash and chop the green herb.
Heat the oil over medium heat in a heavy-bottomed pan or pressure cooker, lower the heat, add the onions, cover and cook till soft and translucent.
Add the rest of ingredients except the stock or water and herb. Toss over medium heat for a few minutes.
Pour in the stock or water, bring up to the boil and cook till the vegetable are well softened. If using the pressure cooker, cook under pressure for 5 minutes, release the pressure and simmer for a further 15 minutes.
Stir the green herb, if used, and mash or blend the soup to a pure.
Reheat till piping hot and serve immediately.
Variations: Reduce the amount of stock by about 1 and half cups, and after blending the soup add the same quantity of milk.
- You can use any one vegetable along with the onions and potatoes, and the same basic recipe to make for example, Celery Soup, Green Pea Soup, Carrot Soup, or Spinach Soup. Spinach Soup is improved by the addition of a grated nutmeg.
- You can hardly have a better Tomato Soup than one made as above using only 1-2 onions, 3-4 medium potatoes and 6-8 medium tomatoes. Tomatoes being so full of water, you may like to reduce the amount of water or stock. The inclusion of mint, dill or basil, coarsely chopped and added just before pureeing, lifts it int0 the gourmet class.
- The classic cold soup Vichyssoise is exactly this recipe, using only 3-4 potatoes and 1/2 kg leeks, if available, otherwise use spring onions or regular onions. Chill and stir in 1/2 cup cream just before serving. If served hot it is called Potage Bonne Femme and can be enriched with cream or 25 gms butter.
- You can invent your own variations: Mushroom and Green Peas; Celery and Turnip; Capsicum and Leeks; Spinach and Carrot - just endless possibilities.