Sunday, June 14, 2020

Watercress & Sweet Leek Soup with Horseradish & Crème Fraîche Croûtes from Jamie Oliver for Souper (Soup, Salad, & Sammie) Sundays

I had Jamie Oliver's Ultimate Veg on hold from back in March and the library opened up enough to pick up holds by appointment so I was able to pick it up this week. You don't go inside, you and the librarian wear masks and they have gloves, and anything returned is kept in quarantine for 4 days and then cleaned so it feels fairly safe. Anyway I went to the soups section and decided on his Watercress and Sweet Leek Soup as the first recipe I wanted to try.

I thought the watercress would add the peppery notes needed to keep this soup from feeling too heavy for June weather and I was salivating a bit over the Crème Fraîche Croûtes that are served on top. Sometimes the topping really makes the soup. Watercress is easy to find here as it is used in a lot of local Asian dishes which is always a benefit. I also think you could eat this soup cold or room temp if you wanted.

Watercress & Sweet Leek Soup with Horseradish & Crème Fraîche Croûtes
From Jamie Oliver Ultimate Veg
(Serves 4)

1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 large leek
olive oil
1 lb potatoes
4 cups vegetable stock 
3 1/2 oz watercress
2 tsp creamed horseradish
2 heaping tablespoons crème fraîche
1/2 a baguette
extra virgin olive oil

Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic, halve, wash and roughly chop the leek, then place in a large casserole pan over a medium-low heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Fry gently with the lid on for 20 minutes, or until soft with no color, stirring regularly and adding a splash of water, if needed.

Peel the potatoes, chop into 1/2-inch cubes and add to the pan. Pour in the stock, cover, then bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Season to perfection with sea salt and black pepper and stir in most of the watercress. Blitz a third of the soup with an immersion blender (or in a regular blender) and stir through.

Mix the horseradish with the crème fraîche, then finely slice the baguette (if beautifully fresh I leave untoasted, but toast if you prefer), adding a spoonful to each piece. Serve the soup topped with the croûtes and the remaining  watercress. Finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of pepper.

Notes/Results: This soup has a nice balance of sweet, savory, peppery and bright from the various ingredients--especially when you layer on the croûtes--which are delicious enough on their own. I think I underuse horseradish as an ingredient--it mixes nicely with the crème fraîche and you could use labne, yogurt or sour cream if crème fraîche is hard to find. I'm looking forward to enjoying this for lunches this week and would happily make it again.

I'm linking it up to I Heart Cooking Clubs where we are still doing Needs Must cooking along with Julia Child and 19 other featured chefs including Jamie Oliver.

Let's see who awaits in the Souper Sundays kitchen this week:

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shared a Simple Garden Salad with Homegrown Tomatoes, saying, "The salad is a basic type but the star was the tomatoes as we grew them.  Honestly, I wish we were more successful in the garden because there is nothing like a home grown tomato.  The taste is so fresh and there is the satisfaction of having grown it yourself."

Shaheen of Allotment2Kitchen brought Garlicky Rainbow Chard Pasta Salad and said, "This pretty Rainbow Chard Pasta Salad was heavily flavoured and scented with garlic, but I don't mind having garlic breath. It was splendid to tuck into during the busy working week. For those of you who may be interested in the recipe, there is not much to it really. This is really a tarted up version of Aglio Olio." 

Thank you to Tina and Shaheen for joining me this week!

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.
If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's Souper Sunday's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:

  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you. Also please see below for what to do on your blog post that you link up to Souper Sundays in order to be included in the weekly round-up.

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and add a link back to this post. (Not to be a pain but it's polite and only fair to link back to events you link up at--so if you link a post up here without linking back to this post or my blog on your post, it will be removed.)
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (completely optional).

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter
Have a happy, healthy week and be well. 


  1. This looks delicious and the topping looks so tempting!

  2. This soup looks wonderful. I've tried watercress soup before and found it way too peppery for my taste. However, I see this recipe uses a small of watercress which is probably the key! thanks

  3. I love horseradish and I know I under use it as no one else in the house cares for it. I can see how this would all pair together wonderfully and it certainly looks like spring in a bowl.

    Our library opened up in the same way, which did in fact feel very safe, but now it is open regular (just like almost everything else) and cases have been spiking something fierce.

  4. Nice. I may give this a go as i have leeks and small handful of potatoes to use up, also liking this sound of the horseradish in it.

  5. I also like horseradish, but its only me in the house. When I was growing up my sister and I munched OTC crackers with horseradish for snacks. Great recipe and I may "steal" this one from you too !
    Today I am bringing my version of YOUR Boursin potato soup. Thanks for the inspiration:-)


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