Supremely Satisfying Creamy Courgette and Cheese Soup

Due to lack of attention on my part when food purchasing there is currently a courgette glut in our fridge.  I have no idea how I managed it, but I ordered nearly 2 kilos…quite a lot for two people!

Somewhat fortuitously, the cucurbit invasion coincided with the need to make something really quick to eat before succumbing to exhaustion, so we made inroads into the courgette mountain and whizzed up this feel-good soup.

Courgette & cheese soupParmesan was eschewed at the last minute in favour of a chunk of Comté left over from Big Sis’s Birthday.  The nutty, slightly sweet flavour was superb – I thoroughly recommend it (in this soup or on its own).  Don’t get hung up on it though, just use what you’ve got.

A small word of caution: really strong cheeses will overwhelm the flavour of the courgettes, making it more of a cheese soup – which could be just as good, but perhaps it’s a shame to abuse the courgettes in order to get there? 😉

To serve two (big portions)

Olive oil
A good handful of soffritto
1 small clove garlic, minced
A small handful of fresh basil leaves
Approx. 500g courgettes, cut into chunks
250-300ml chicken stock
2 glasses of white wine
4-6 tablespoons crème fraîche
50-75g (ish) grated Comté, or parmesan or other grated cheese of your choice
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Ok, this won’t take very long…but don’t do it in a rush…use the prep and cooking time to slow down the tempo and let go of the day.

Immerse yourself in the rhythms of chopping and stirring…feel yourself unwind as you coax out flavours to meet and mingle…let your tensions drift away in curls of aromatic steam as the stock simmers…remember the caress of sun on your face as you breathe in the sweet peppery scent of the basil…

When making your soup is a whole body experience the eating is so much more satisfying 🙂

Soffritto - cookedHeat olive oil and cook soffritto over a medium to low heat until veg starts to soften.

CourgettesTurn up heat a little, add minced garlic and chopped courgettes, continue to cook until courgettes are just starting to colour.
You may notice they are not at all browned in this picture.  That’s because they’re raw.  I forgot to take a picture at the cooked stage.

Glass of wineAdd one glass of wine and simmer until reduced by about half.

The other glass of wine is for you – cheers!

Chicken stockpotAdd chicken stock and simmer for 10-15 minutes (make sure the carrots in the soffritto are soft).

Carefully transfer to food processor or blender.

Creme fraicheAdd crème fraîche…

Fresh basil…and add all but two or three of the basil leaves.

Blend to your preferred consistency.

ComteReturn to pan and add most of the grated cheese (keep some back for sprinkling on the top).

Warm gently, stirring, until cheese has melted.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Courgette & cheese soupSprinkle with remaining cheese and shred those last few basil leaves over the top. Serve with hot, buttered toast.

Feel better.

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