Spring greens and smoked haddock soup with watercress snow

Spring greens and smoked haddock soup with watercress snow

Good Better Green

This is a very hearty, warming soup and definitely a proper meal-in-one. It is also quite kid-friendly, and easy to prepare in advance up to the step of adding the fish. The watercress snow makes enough to serve 8, but the surplus will keep well in the freezer for at least a couple of months. You need to make it the day before, to allow for freezing time.


Quantity Ingredient
a little olive or coconut oil or butter
1 leek, trimmed, sliced in half lengthways and sliced across into half-moons
2 celery stalks, trimmed and roughly chopped
2 medium onions, roughly chopped
2 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into medium dice
1 litre fish or vegetable stock
125ml dry white wine
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, toasted in dry frying pan for 1–2 minutes until fragrant, then finely ground
2 bay leaves
300g spring or collard greens, very finely shredded
300g undyed smoked haddock fillet, cut into bite-sized pieces
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the watercress snow

Quantity Ingredient
100g watercress
60g almonds, toasted in hot oven for 7–8 minutes
squeeze lemon, juiced
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
pinch sea salt
pinch freshly ground black pepper
1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a small food processor, blitz all the ingredients, except the olive oil, for the watercress snow, scraping down the sides a few times, then stir in the olive oil until it just reaches a sauce-like consistency.
  2. Transfer to a flat, shallow container and place in the freezer for at least 6 hours.
  3. When you are ready to make the soup, heat the oil or butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the leek, celery, onions and garlic with a pinch of salt and sweat until soft and translucent. Add the potatoes and cook a little longer, resisting the urge to stir.
  4. Add the stock, wine, ground fennel and bay leaves, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes with the lid ajar until the potatoes are tender.
  5. Remove the bay leaves and blend the soup until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste, and a little hot water if it is too thick. Return the soup to the pan and stir in the greens. Simmer until tender, then either remove half the soup and blend again, or use a stick blender to partially blend the soup in the pan; you want a smooth soup with bits of greens to chew on.
  6. Add the fish and simmer for a few minutes until it is cooked through or flaky. Be careful not to overcook it, as it will become dry and stringy.
  7. While the fish is cooking, remove the watercress snow from the freezer and cut half into chunks (return the rest to the freezer for another occasion). Process the chunks in a blender to make a frozen powder, or use a sharp knife to chop it up.
  8. Serve the soup hot with lots of watercress snow and the reserved toasted, chopped almonds.
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