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Two beautiful recipes to keep you warm on the inside, while the outside freezes. A proper chicken soup with big chunks of good, free-range bird and the most simple and beautifully-flavoured tomato soup we’ve tasted. Really simple and nutritious.

Wholesome chicken soup

Serves 6

  • olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
  • 2 sticks of celery, trimmed and roughly chopped, leaves reserved
  • 2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 white onions, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1.6kg higher-welfare chicken
  • a handful of new potatoes, peeled
  • 1 small bunch of fresh thyme
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon
  • extra virgin olive oil

Place a medium pan over a medium-low heat, then add a lug of olive oil, followed by the garlic and cook gently for around 1 minute. Throw in the celery, carrots and onion and cook for 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft but not coloured.

Add the chicken to the pan, along with the potatoes, thyme sprigs and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover with 300ml water and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 1 hour 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.

Using tongs, carefully transfer the chicken to a board and pull the meat off the bones using 2 forks. Return the meat to the broth – you can save the bones for another stock. Taste and season with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice, if needed. Ladle into bowls, scatter over the reserved celery leaves, drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil and serve.

Classic tomato and basil soup

Serves 6

  • 1 litre of vegetable stock, preferably organic
  • olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced
  • 2 sticks of celery, trimmed and roughly chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 white onions, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 x 400g tin quality plum tomatoes
  • 3 tomatoes on the vine
  • ½ a bunch of fresh basil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil

Place a small pan over a low heat, then add the stock and allow to heat up.

Meanwhile, place a medium pan over a medium-low heat, then add a lug of olive oil, followed by the garlic and cook gently for around 1 minute. Throw in the celery, carrots and onion and cook for 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft but not coloured.

Add the plum tomatoes, breaking them up into the pan, then add the whole tomatoes, along with the vine. Pour in the hot stock, and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for around 15-20 minutes. About a minute before it’s ready, tear in the basil leaves, discarding the stalks and reserving a few baby leaves for later.

Using a stick blender, blitz the soup until smooth. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, top with the reserved basil leaves and serve with crusty bread.

TIP: if you want, try topping your soup with a little basil oil, pesto or a sprinkling of grated Parmesan. If you really want to crank up the heat, a finely chopped red chilli works a treat.

 

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