We’re really excited by all the new spring produce – from sweet morels to sticks of crimson rhubarb, gamey wood pigeon to spring lamb. Two of our favourites are simple new potatoes and wild garlic foraged from the hedgerows – it is everywhere right now. Here is a lovely recipe using both, perfect for a weekend lunch sat in the garden. Poaching the potatoes in olive oil gives the potatoes an incredibly buttery flavour you must try.
250g wild/hedgerow garlic, thoroughly washed
250g baby spinach
Two large potatoes
Half a leek, chopped
Half a large white onion, chopped
One stick of celery, chopped
75g unsalted butter
Cornish sea salt
One and a half litres of water
Extra virgin olive oil
200g charlotte potatoes, peeled and cut into small dice
Firstly, put the diced charlotte potatoes into a sauce pan, and add enough extra virgin olive oil to cover them all (this can use up to one litre of olive oil – but don’t worry, you can use the oil again later – just store it in the fridge for up to two weeks afterwards). Poach gently until the potatoes are just cooked. Keep warm.
In a large pan, sweat the leek, onion and celery until soft, peel and finely slice the large potatoes and add to the pan, continue to cook for a couple more minutes. Add the water and bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are soft, 8-10 minutes.
Add the wild garlic and spinach leaves, and cook until the leaves are wilted. It is important here not to cook it for too long at this stage or you will lose the vibrant colour of the finished dish.
Blend the soup in batches, carefully. In each batch add a few knobs of butter. Blend until smooth, then pass through a sieve.
Season the soup well, it will require quite a lot of salt. If not serving straight away it is important to cool the soup down as quickly as possible.
To serve, pour the soup into bowls, spoon the charlotte potatoes out of the olive oil and use to garnish the soup.