Hot or Cold Watercress Soup

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Hot or Cold Watercress Soup
Serves 6
Watercress is a fast-growing, semi-aquatic, hearty perennial herb native from Europe to central Asia and one of the oldest known leaf vegetables consumed by human beings. These plants are members of the cabbage family and botanically related to garden cress and mustard (greens) all of which are noteworthy for their peppery, tangy flavor. Being semi-aquatic, watercress is frequently produced around the headwaters of streams & rivers. Utilized more prominently in Europe and in the UK, watercress is used as a plate garnish, in salads and occasionally in saute dishes. One of its most popular uses is in Watercress Soup which is a British classic.
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  1. 1/2 stick Butter, salted
  2. 1 lb. Potatoes, peeled & diced 1"
  3. 1 lb. Leeks, sliced
  4. 1 pt. Chicken Stock (or broth)
  5. 1 cup Heavy Cream
  6. 6 oz. Watercress, rinsed & chopped (leave a few sprigs for garnish)
  7. 1/4 cup Bacon, cooked crisp & crumbled
  8. To Taste - Salt & Pepper
  9. As Desired - Sour Cream (optional)
  1. Melt the butter and gently fry the vegetables for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken stock, bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.
  3. Cool a little and add the cream and watercress.
  4. Blend in a blender until smooth.
  5. Season with salt and pepper and either heat through for a hot soup or chill for 3-4 hours for cold soup.
  6. Garnish with crisp bacon pieces and a dollop of sour cream (optional).
Nino Salvaggio