….. with an Indian/Welsh twist …..
As many of you know by now – I do love vegetables ……or at least most of them!
When I grew up Leeks, in one form or another, appeared on our table at least once or twice a week.
Grandpa had a nice biggish vegetable garden behind his house where he grew nearly everything possible and the women in the family at that time always managed to come up with a wonderful variety of recipes for this and other vegetables.
But since leeks are not always readily available in the Supermarkets here, I make full use of them whenever I find them in their shelves. This means that we will be eating leeks at least 2-3 times that week – changing my recipes around to avoid boredom. And yes, this is just one of those weeks – a delivery of leeks had arrived in our Supermarket and so, you guessed it, I have been cooking various different dishes, partly from memory, partly from my little box of old old recipes and partly with my new ‘spur-of-the-moment’ input. So far, touch wood, I seem to have hit just the right button on my taste buds and hopefully at least some of you, who read this, will like today’s delicious soup and the other leek recipes which will be posted in the near future.
This following recipe is pretty much a standard one – in fact ideal for a light supper or an after party treat.
What does she mean by this, I hear you ask – simple, exactly what I wrote.
Many many years ago I started a habit (which soon became a sort of ‘tradition’ in our house). I started serving big chunky mugs filled with delicious hot nourishing soup after our official entertaining. Some of you know these occasions, where in a room (or garden) filled with well over 100 people one does not have a chance talking to some of the people one would really like to talk, like old friends etc., due to protocol, priority or whatever. Just imagine weddings, big birthday bashes etc. – so we started asking certain people discreetly to stay behind after the 2-hour long reception, which was very much appreciated, more so when we lived abroad somewhere on this planet. The ladies were only too happy to shed their high heeled shoes and literally flop onto the nearest sofas, chairs or even floor. The men, tie loosened, followed quickly suit and that’s when we brought out our soup. And after a few drinks and delicious ‘finger food’, the hot heart-warming, soul refreshing soup, was more than well received.
This became such a success that it was not only copied (the biggest form of flattery, right ?) but guests started to ask “what is the soup of the night?” And so I kept this by now ‘tradition’ going well past retirement from official life.
As always, I tell you what I used here for 2 people – so do not be too rigid – adjust to your own need and taste.
What you need:
250 gr Mincemeat (Keema)
3 x medium sized leeks, cleaned, most of the top green part discarded
4 x garlic cloves, finely chopped (or use garlic powder) – optional.
2 x Beef- or Vegetable Stock cubes dissolved in appr. 500 ml water
200 – 250 x gr of soft cheese (I used Mozzarella), cut into small cubes
3 x Tbsp of thick curd or crème fraîche
1 x medium sized potato, peeled and sliced thinly
Salt, pepper, to taste
2 x tsp (home-made) curry powder
2 x tsp paprika powder
2 x tsp ground nutmeg
2 x Tbsp Vegetable oil
How to cook:
First of all prepare your leeks further by washing them thoroughly to remove all the dirt between the layers. Then cut them into fine rings and keep aside.
Heat the oil in a wide pot – add the Mincemeat and quickly fry this for app. 5-8 minutes; add salt and pepper. Stir.
Now add the previously prepared leeks, mix and fry this further for another 5 minutes or so.
Add the stock, stir, reduce heat to fairly low, cover with lid and let this cook for maybe 10 minutes (check – don’t let leeks get mushy).
Add the cheese, Mozzarella is fine here, let it melt completely.
Add curd or crème fraîche and turn up heat a little bit for just a couple of minutes. Keep stirring.
Taste and add all the remaining spices. Mix well and check if this to your own liking.
I frequently serve just a couple of thin slices of ‘French bread’, slightly toasted and my own garlic butter scraped over it.
That’s it. Guten Appetit.