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Creamy Zucchini/Courgette Soup [Recipe]

Zucchini / Courgette Soup | www.myfoododyssey.com

On my recent trip home I got to catch up with some old friends, but I also got to meet new people. I love meeting new people, especially in rural Ireland where they seem so characterful, so full of laughter and stories. Meeting new people invariable results in being asked two questions – where do you come from and what do you do. These seemingly innocuous questions always fill me with dread – because I don’t have a straightforward answer to either of them.

An answer to these two simple questions is pretty much all an Irish person needs to define you. Ireland is a relatively small country with just 32 counties. What county you’re from is very important in Ireland, particularly in September, when the national finals of our two inter-county sports (Gaelic football and hurling) are held.

Chopped Zucchini / Courgette| www.myfoododyssey.com

I was born in Dublin, but moved to Wexford when I was six. I lived in Wexford until I finished school, after which I moved back to Dublin for college. Except for short stints in Mayo, Texas and Drogheda, I pretty much stayed in Dublin until I left Ireland in 2013. So that’s 10 very formative years in Wexford but 28 years in Dublin. When people ask you where you’re from they expect a one or two word answer, not a history lesson. But which am I from? Am I from Dublin, who had won the All-Ireland Football Championship the day before but whom rural people often view as being a bit high and mighty? Or am I from Wexford, where my dad still lives in our family home, but who haven’t won an All-Ireland title since 1996?

Then there’s the “what do you do?” question. You can tell by the look in a person’s eyes whether or not they’re ready for the full “My Food Odyssey” story or just want a short answer. There again, I’m stumped. I don’t have a job in the classic sense. In America I might be called a homesteader, but that term has no traction whatsoever in Ireland. So what am I? Depending on who was asking (or the impression I wanted to make!) I toggled between writer and farmer. I guess I’m both, really, but that’s just way too complicated.

Zucchini / Courgette | www.myfoododyssey.com

My post-holiday haul. The one on the left weighed a whopping 2.8 kg (over 6 lbs).

So what the heck does all this have to do with soup? One of the downsides of being a farmer is that you’re fairly restricted in what holiday time you can take. I took two weeks off in June, right at the start of the growing season, and scrambled for weeks to catch up when I got home. For my autumn break I was more prepared. I waited until as close to the end of the season as possible, harvesting most of my vegetables before leaving. I left only onions, brassicas and courgettes / zucchini growing while I was away. Onions and brassicas are slow growers and seemed unchanged when I returned. The zucchini, on the other hand, were enormous! The little tiny fingers I had left on the plants when I went away were now bigger than my arm. Altogether I had over 10 kg (20 lbs) of zucchini to deal with. As I already had a shelf of zucchini pickle and a freezer of zucchini muffins, I did the only other thing I could think of – I made soup.

Zucchini / Courgette Soup | www.myfoododyssey.com

This is one of the easiest soups I have ever made. It has no peeling and very little chopping. It uses water and not stock so as not to overpower the delicate flavour of the zucchini. The resultant soup, however, is thick, creamy and luxurious. You would never guess it has just 5 ingredients and absolutely no dairy products. And best of all it uses those overgrown zucchini you discover hidden under a leaf, having been neglected for several weeks. Just be sure to remove the spongy, seedy core and only use the firm flesh around the sides. You can, of course, use young courgettes from the supermarket or farmers’ market, in which case you probably won’t have a spongy core, making your chopping job even easier.

Zucchini / Courgette Center | www.myfoododyssey.com

Creamy Courgette / Zucchini Soup

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

INGREDIENTS:

    2 Tbsp sunflower or rapeseed (canola) oil
    1 kg | 2 lbs zucchini, outer flesh only*, roughly chopped
    ½ tsp salt
    1 tsp garlic powder
    500 mls | 1 pint water

*Weigh the zucchini after removing any spongy core.

METHOD:

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat.
  2. Add the zucchini pieces and stir to thoroughly coat the zucchini in the oil.
  3. Cover the saucepan with a lid and leave the zucchini to “sweat” for 15 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
  4. Take the saucepan off the heat and add the salt and garlic powder. Stir well to mix the seasoning through the zucchini.
  5. Add the water and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
  6. Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Blend the soup in the saucepan using a stick blender. Alternatively you can blend the soup in small batches in a food processor or liquidiser. Note that hot soup expands when blended, so ensure to cool the soup before blending and blend small quantities at a time to avoid scalding.
  7. The soup is ready when it is completely smooth and creamy, with no lumps of zucchini remaining.
  8. Cover the pot with a lid and reheat gently until just boiling. Serve with a side of crusty bread or a melty cheese toasty.

NB: Note that this soup is very thick and prone to volcanic eruptions when heated. To avoid any risk of scalding, please ensure the saucepan is covered with a lid when reheating.

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Zucchini / Courgette Soup | www.myfoododyssey.com

Zucchini / Courgette Soup | www.myfoododyssey.com


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Easy Tomato & Lentil Soup | www.myfoododyssey.com
QUICK & EASY TOMATO LENTIL SOUP:
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PUMPKIN & PEANUT BUTTER SOUP:
The addition of peanut butter (homemade, of course – see my recipe here) makes this a creamy, silky soup, perfect for cold evenings. Delicious with a slice of soda bread – see above. (View recipe)


22 Comments Post a comment
  1. Oh, how I empathise with your “who/ what the hell are you?” dilemma. I have very similar issues. People like straight-forward, messy stories confuse them.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 17, 2016
    • Yeh, I really should just make something up and have it ready. Even when I lived in Ireland my answer to the “what do you do?” question always met with blank stares. I eventually just said “I work for XXX (big telecoms company)” and left it at that.

      Liked by 1 person

      July 17, 2016
  2. I love that the soup uses the peel. Must try this next year.

    On the “where are you from?” front: where I live on Prince Edward Island, Canada, you are an Islander if you were born here. So my kids, who live in Ontario and Pennsylvania are Islanders. But I, a so-called “Islander by choice,” having lived here for 40 years, am not an Islander, but a “Come From Away” (aka CFA). So I’d say you’re from Wexford.

    Liked by 1 person

    October 12, 2015
    • That’s so interesting, Bunty! I love hearing how these things work around the world. If I was to follow your “islander” rules, though, would I not be from Dublin, since that’s where I was born? Am I not a CFA in Wexford?!

      Like

      October 12, 2015
      • Guess I read your post too fast, so, by PEI standards you’re a Dubliner. There are jokes here about someone born on the ferry (long before we had a bridge)to Island parents who was not considered an Islander.

        Liked by 1 person

        October 12, 2015
  3. Oh yes, I know that explosive splurting of hot soup when reheating…..treacherous! I’m gonna risk it though….wearing my specially designed, asbestos, soup-cooking suit 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    October 8, 2015
    • Tis only lethal, Karen, lethal!

      Like

      October 8, 2015
  4. Mayo, Texas and Drogheda :D… Lovely post. I must admit, I have some form of allegiance to Dublin too!

    Liked by 1 person

    October 7, 2015
    • But you’ll always be French, right?!

      Liked by 1 person

      October 7, 2015
      • Actually Breton 😉 ( ok, let’s not start a war here). Yes of course, but if I was to feel “at home” somewhere in Ireland it would be Dublin.

        Liked by 1 person

        October 7, 2015
  5. ‘Once a Jackine, always a Jackine’! (You may have to explain how this parochial label originated because I really have no idea). Anyway, if your parents and parent’s parents were Jackines then there is no doubt of your origins (I’m not discounting the unquestionable and charming influences of your paternal Galwegian lineages!). So…how a Jackine made her way from the metropolis of ‘big city’ Dublin to the beautiful fertile rural landscape on Lithuania will be the opening chapter of your book…!!! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    October 7, 2015
    • Ah, Jackine – I haven’t heard that term in years! I haven’t a clue what it means, either – I’ll have to look it up. It definitely has a nicer ring to it than “yellow belly”, though!

      Liked by 1 person

      October 7, 2015
      • Lovely post, June, and the courgette soup looks sumptuous! I’m the best part of 24 years in Dublin now but I still say I’m from Wexford. Re: Jackeen, I have already heard it dates from the time when the ordinary people of Dublin waved Union Jack flags at Queen Victoria when she visited, pre-independence.

        Liked by 1 person

        October 8, 2015
      • Oh, that’s interesting, Lyn – I never knew that. On the “where are you from” thing, I think you’re more clear cut because you were born and raised in Wexford. We were “blow ins” from the big smoke! If you were to say where I was from, would you lean more towards Dublin or Wexford?

        Like

        October 8, 2015
      • Yes, it’s not so clearcut – you were so young when you moved, I’d think you’re definitely a mix of the two!

        Liked by 1 person

        October 9, 2015
  6. P.S. In my profiler pic, I am holding baby Nigel, my daughter’s latest Pygmy goat addition! We love him, his Mommy Annabelle, and goat sister Maci 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    October 7, 2015
  7. I loved reading this, and can’t wait to try the recipe (although my zucchini crop disappointed this year!) I love reading about your life in Lithuania – and here in America, by your activities, we’d certainly call you a Homesteader. Homesteading is different to farming, I think…homesteading involves gardening, growing and cooking one’s own food, animal care and husbandry, and responsible re-use and recycling of everyday products, among other things. In a nutshell, it’s trying to live as simply and sustainably as one can. You do all of this and more! Your beautiful home is the ultimate re-use and recycle project! I have a small home on a small bit of land and I try to keep stewardship of it in a responsible way – caring for and nurturing the natural critters that visit, growing flowers and vegetables, and using no chemicals in my efforts. I’d love to have chickens but my local rules won’t allow it 😦 However my daughter is an active homesteader about an hour south of me, and I can enjoy her goats and chickens 🙂 All the best June and I look forward to more of your posts!

    Liked by 1 person

    October 7, 2015
    • Thanks Angela. Your description certainly describes what we do. I hate waste and love recycling things. It’s such a joy when something is transformed from being old and dilapidated to being new and beautiful. It’s such a shame you can’t keep chickens, but at least you get to enjoy them at your daughter’s. Those goods look so cute. I hope to get a goat or two some day for milk. Thanks for reading! 🙂

      Like

      October 7, 2015

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  1. Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Soup [Recipe] | My Food Odyssey
  2. Quick & Easy Tomato Lentil Soup [Recipe] | My Food Odyssey
  3. Creamy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup [Recipe] | My Food Odyssey

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