Monday, May 3, 2010

green soup for a green face and goodbye to the old house

After a fantastic party on the North Antrim coast which ran into the small hours of this morning, there were a few ropey looking relations tenderly emerging to take in a breath of that healthy fresh air that blows around up there, myself included.
The most I could manage, after my long drive back to Dublin at midday, was to stay indoors feeling slightly sorry for myself, and make some soup as a cure.
For green soup in a green bowl to match a green face, you will need :

1 onion, finely chopped
1 knob of butter and a drop of oil
1 head of broccoli, broken in to florets
3 small potatoes, peeled and cubed
500ml home-made chicken stock (or vegetable bouillon)
2 cloves of garlic
50ml milk
sea salt and freshly milled black pepper to taste
1 green bowl

In a heavy based saucepan, melt the butter and heat the oil.  Add the onions and fry for five minutes until they have caramelised.  Add the garlic and fry for another few minutes.  Then add the potato and broccoli and sweat for a few minutes until it is a beautiful bright green colour.  Add the stock and simmer on a very low heat until the vegetables are cooked tender and no more - care should be taken here not to overcook the broccoli. 

Blend to a fine silky soup adding a little milk to thin it down if necessary.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  This also tastes good with a crumbled blue cheese, maybe Fourme d'Ambert, on top.
You will feel instantly better!

Step 2 in the road to recovery is to eat bacon, a fried egg and some HP sauce.

I have to mention the canapes which were made for the party last night also.  Everyone made something to bring, so we had lots of delicious nibbles.  Note also the book which my mother unearthed from her vintage collection of cook books much to my brothers and my delight - this is a classic if every I saw one!

It was just so great to have all our family and friends together to celebrate the old house before its imminent demolition.  It will be a sad day to see it  go as it has seen the rearing of two families, has witnessed many tears, mostly of laughter and some from sadness,  it has been host to innumerable parties (the Wheelers can certainly not be accused of not knowing how to enjoy themselves), the door was always open day and night ...may its spirit live on!


  1. Liz, I like the little man peering into the soup bowl...

  2. He is supposed to be an analogy for me feeling small and ill ... the boys gave him to me - he is the doctor apparently