If you’re like me, winter starts to wear you down after a while. One of the best winter boosts for me is bright green, fresh tasting spinach soup. Wait! Don’t turn up your nose at this soup just because the star of the show is spinach. My father had always hated “cooked spinach,” until he had this soup. Since the spinach is just wilted, not cooked into bitterness, it retains wonderful flavor.
If you have spinach in your garden, you can use it in this recipe. We’re between spinach harvests here, so I am using good organic baby spinach from the store.
- 1 pat butter (about 1/3 tablespoon) with enough oil oil to lightly coat the bottom of your pan (or all olive oil)
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced (Use less if the onion is strong.)
- 1 tablespoon potato flour (wheat flour okay if you do not have potato flour)
- 1 cup chicken stock (vegetarian option: use vegetable stock)
- 5 ounces baby spinach, washed and dried (Yes, this is how much spinach is in your average store box of organic baby spinach)
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon thyme–fresh use a little more
- salt, pepper, other herbs to taste
- optional garnish: parmesan or other sweet sheep’s milk cheese or nutty-sweet swiss cheese
- optional garnish: sliced boiled eggs
Begin by dicing your onion and sauteing the onion in the butter and oil until the onion is light caramel color. Contrary to my usual cast iron obsession, I like to use a tall, heavy-bottomed stainless steel pitcher for this soup. The shape will make it easier to use a stick blender. Now stir in the potato flour, coating the onions in the flour. Cook for a minute or two. Slowly add the chicken broth, stirring as you go and keeping the burner set to simmer. If you stirred the flour well with the onions, it should disappear as you add the broth. Now add your spinach, stir, cover, and simmer for a minute or two, stir, and keep wilting the spinach.
Once all of the spinach is wilted (this will not take long!), turn off the heat. You want to keep the bright color. Add the milk and get out your emersion blender and blend away. Don’t have an immersion blender? Use your regular blender, but be really careful not to blow the lid off! What if you don’t have either an immersion blender or regular blender? Chop the spinach before you wilt it. Reheat the soup and serve in bowls. Add the optional cheese garnish, grated, or the optional boiled egg slices. Dip in your spoon. Savor the fresh flavor. Feel the snows of winter melting off you as the green of spring enters you and nourishes you. Dip some crusty bread in the soup. Mmmmmmm.