Courgette and Garlic Soup

Ingredients

  • 60ml/2fl oz extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • Handful basil leaves (preferably Italian), chopped
  • Sea salt and ground white pepper, to taste
  • 1kg/2¼lb green courgettes, cut lengthways, into quarters, then into 1cm/½in slices
  • 750ml/1¼ pint stock
  • 60ml/2fl oz single cream
  • Handful flatleaf parsley, chopped
  • 50g/2oz freshly grated parmesan, plus extra to serve

To serve:

  • Crusty bread
  • Green salad
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Heat the oil in a heavy-based pan over a medium heat.

Cook the garlic, basil, salt and courgette slowly for 10 minutes, or until the courgettes are lightly browned and softened.

Add white pepper to taste, then pour in the stock and simmer for 8 minutes, uncovered. Remove from the heat.

Put three-quarters of the soup mixture into a food processor and blend until smooth.

Return the mixture to the pan and stir in the cream, parsley and parmesan.

To serve, ladle the soup into a bowl and season to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Sprinkle over more parmesan to taste. Serve with crusty bread and a green salad.