So in the scorching Irish sun (I know ‘scorching Irish sun’ sounds like an oxymoron), I am eating soup. This soup is fruity, sweet, refreshing and, as I discovered today, it’s also quite nice chilled. Not only can it be served hot or cold, it goes well with a range of spices and flavours; so, feel free to experiment with this simple, healthy and versatile soup.
Apple and Sweet Potato Soup (makes about 4-5 bowls)
- 3 small apples
- 2 large sweet potatoes (approx 1kg/ just over 2 lbs)
- 2 sticks celery
- 2 Tbsp butter
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chicken stock cube
- 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp chilli powder and 3 leaves chopped basil plus more to top
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon, Pinch of nutmeg, 1/4 tsp ginger
- 3 sage leaves and 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 2 sprigs rosemary and juice of half a lemon
- Sour cream
- Pan fried pancetta or crisp smoked bacon.
- Parmesan cheese
- Pumpkin/ sunflower seeds
- First, prep your vegetables. Peel the sweet potatoes and chop into similar sized cubes (about 3/4 inch thick). Peel, core and chop the apples, making them into cubes about a quarter of the size of their sweet potato equivalents. Chop the celery in 1/2 inch slices.
- On a low heat, fry butter in a large saucepan. Add the apples and celery. Stirring occasionally, fry for about 4 minutes, or until the apples are beginning to turn golden.
- Add whatever spices/ herbs you’ve chosen (any of the above combinations are tasty), and fry for another minute or so. The apples don’t have to be completely stewed at this stage, just softened.
- Add sweet potatoes and stir into the butter, apple mixture.
- Add enough water to cover the contents of the saucepan (about 6 cups).
- Bring to the boil and then then gently boil for about 20 mins on a medium heat or until the potatoes are fork tender.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Leave to cool and blend.
- Reheat if you want it warm, or chill in the fridge for cold. Don’t forget to add toppings!
Tip: For extra flavour, roast the sweet potatoes in the oven with some butter or olive oil first (At 190 degrees Celsius for about 20 mins or until fork tender), and reduce boiling time to 2 mins.