One of the things I most love about spring (especially late spring) is that it’s a shoulder season when it comes to ingredients. Our pantry still has items common to our winter meals as well as some of the first items of the coming harvest. This allows us to create combinations that are only possible a few weeks a year – such as this fiddlehead soup.
This is a play on two soups – potato leek and cheddar. The combination is rich and it’s tough to believe there’s no cream used at all.
- 3 cups of peeled potatoes cut into cubes (you can use more if you’d like)
- 1-2 cups of fiddleheads (clean them by cutting off the rough end and running them under running water for a few minutes)
- 0.5 tablespoons white wine vinegar.
- 1 Quart (liter) of chicken or vegetable stock
- 1½ cups of shredded cheddar cheese (the older the better)
- 2 onions chopped small
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil (it’s as much for flavour as it is for cooking)
- Salt, pepper and chili flakes to taste
- 1 tablespoon of herbes salees (or 1-2 teaspoons of dried herbs of your choosing)
- Line the bottom of a thick, tall stock pot with the olive oil, pepper and chili flakes and heat on medium-high.
- As the oil starts to smoke, drop the onions and fiddleheads into the oil. Stir often and cook for 90 seconds.
- Season with herbes salees and white wine vinegar.
- Cook for an additional 2 minutes, stirring often.
- Combine all ingredients, raise temperature to high and bring contents to a hard boil.
- After boiling for 2 minutes, reduce to a simmer and continue the cooking process until potatoes are soft.
- Using a hand mixer or blender, carefully mix everything until it reaches the texture you want.
- Taste and consider adding more salt, pepper or vinegar.
- Finish with cheese and stir until it melts into the soup.
- Top with grated cheese and enjoy!
Note: for a variation on this, you could easily replace 1/3rd to 1/2 of the water or stock with beer (I’d prefer something light in color like a lager or an ale but that’s up to you).