Prep 20 mins
Cook 45 mins
This recipe comes from one of my favourite chefs, Lindsey Bareham. I think the parmesan croutons at the end are the crowning touch to a soup that's flavourful and filling.
- 6 slices pancetta or 6 slices bacon (unsmoked)
- 3 1⁄2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3 heads chicory lettuce
- 50 g butter
- 1⁄2 medium lemon, juiced
- 150 ml dry white wine
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 medium floury potato, peeled,diced and rinsed
- 600 ml chicken stock
- 150 ml creme fraiche
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
- 2 slices white bread, thick
- 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese
- salt & freshly ground black pepper
- In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, fry the pancetta or bacon on both sides in just a bit of the oil until crisp.
- Remove the bacon and lay on paper towel to drain while you make the rest of the soup.
- Add the onion and garlic to the pot and cook over a low heat until softened, about five minutes.
- Meanwhile, coarsely slice the chicory, discarding the root ends.
- Add to the pan together with the butter.
- Turn the chicory through the butter.
- Keeping the heat low, cover the pan and cook for about ten minutes until the chicory starts to wilt.
- Stir in the lemon juice and wine, let simmer for a few seconds, then add the potato to the pan, along with the bay leaf and stock.
- Season with a bit of salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat immediately and let simmer for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, trim the crusts from the bread and cut into chunky cubes.
- Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan.
- When hot, add the bread cubes, tossing continually until golden all over.
- Sprinkle with the parmesan, toss again, then tip onto kitchen paper to drain.
- Serve the soup with a dollop of creme fraiche, a handful of croutons, a crumble of pancetta or bacon and a sprinkling of parsley.