As soon as slightly cooler weather arrives in Brisbane, I crave soup. Perhaps this intense desire to cook soup stems from the knowledge that the winter weeks are fleeting in this town. The chilly mornings hit this past Tuesday am, as I reached for a jumper when I woke at 4:30am for work. At that moment, I knew in my very bones that it was time for soup.
Sweet potato (kumara) lends itself beautifully to soup, hence my first soup of 2015 was a no brainer. If you do not have fresh thyme on hand, use dried thyme. Fresh or ground sage works wonderfully as well, as would fresh basil. The function of whatever herb or herbs you use to is assign a strong flavour to the soup, as sweet potato and coconut can be a tad bland without any help. Some days I use coconut cream for a thicker consistency and sometimes I use coconut milk for a slightly more liquid soup. I try to never use stock in my soups, unless I make the stock myself, as it is almost always drowned in salt.
- 1 tablespoon rice bran oil
- 1 small leek, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1/2 - 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 800g sweet potato, peeled & cut into even cubes
- 2 cups water
- 400ml light coconut cream or milk
- 2 tablespoons of whatever herb you choose to use, stems removed and washed (I used fresh thyme)
- ground black pepper
1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat and add leek, garlic and chilli flakes. Cook, stirring often, for 2-3 minutes or until the leek is transparent. Add the sweet potatoes to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.
2. Pour in the water, coconut cream/milk, herb/s and a generous pinch of ground black pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cover, cooking for 10 minutes or until the sweet potato is quite tender.
3. Pour the soup into a food processor or blender and process/blend on high for just a few seconds until smooth (or almost smooth if you like a little more texture in your soup). Ladle into 4 soup bowls and top with more herbs and extra chilli flakes, to garnish.
Serves / 4
Total Preparation time / 15 minutes
Total Cooking time / maximum 25 minutes