How to Make Watercress Soup – A Dairy Free Recipe

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How to make this tasty, wholesome soup. Ideal for a colourful starter or a lunchtime treat for all the family, using dairy free ingredients.

Watercress Soup Recipe

Ingredients, enough to serve 2 people

  • 1 Medium Potato, cleaned, unpeeled and chopped
  • 1 Vegetable Stock Cube
  • 1 Litre Boiling Water
  • 1 Small Onion, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Bunch/Bag (approx 100g) Watercress, washed
  • 2 Teaspoons Freshly Ground Nutmeg

Method

  1. Dissolve the stock cube in the boiling water.
  2. Meanwhile place the olive oil into a large saucepan and add the chopped onion and potato.
  3. Heat gently for about 10 to 15 minutes until the onions and potato start to soften. Add some of the vegetable stock to prevent burning.
  4. Add the rest of the stock to the onion and potato, then add the watercress and the nutmeg.
  5. Place the lid over the saucepan and simmer for about 20 minutes.
  6. Remove from the heat and blend with a hand blender or food processor until smooth.
  7. Serve immediately with fresh crusty bread.

The soup will keep overnight in an airtight container in the fridge. It will also freeze successfully.

Nutritional Information of Watercress used in The Watercress Soup Recipe

Watercress is truly the powerhouse of the vegetable world. Packed with minerals and nutrients it contains gram for gram more calcium than milk, more vitamin C than oranges and more iron than spinach. In addition it is a good source of:

  • Vitamins A, B1, B6, E and K
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Manganese
  • Antioxidants

Known since ancient times for it’s health giving properties, watercress is delicious cooked and raw, in salads and as an accompaniment to meat dishes in particular lamb and fish, commonly salmon. Fresh watercress is characterised by it’s deep green colour and has a peppery taste. The mustard oils contained in the plant are released during chewing and aid digestion.

The Tradtional Farming of Watercress and the Historical Watercress Line in Hampshire

Watercress is traditionally grown in the South of England, in particular Dorest and Hampshire. The development of a rail line, the Watercress Line, in Hampshire in the midde of the nineteenth century dramatically reduced the delivery time of watercress and contributed to the prosperity of the region.

The creation of the Watercress Line, made it possible to pick the watercress in the morning and have it delivered for sale at Covent Garden in London later the same day. The Watercress Line still runs and today the steam engine carries hundreds of thousands of tourists each year and is one of Hampshire’s biggest tourist attractions.

The Watercress Festival is an Annual Celebration

A fete, known as the Watercress Festival, is held every year to celebrate the start of the watercress season in May. A popular event it draws thousands of people who enjoy the cavalcade, cookery demonstrations and competitions, including a watercress eating competition against the clock.

Organised by the local council, community groups, local chamber of commerce, The Watercress Alliance and various local companies it is a showcase for farmers and producers to promote their local produce. A fun way for families to find out about and enjoy the goodness that is fresh watercress.

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