SWEET POTATO & CHORIZO SOUP (serves 3-4)
1kg sweet potato, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 large donkey carrot, peeled and cut into large chunks
1-2 tbsp olive oil
sea salt & black pepper
200g cooking Chorizo sausage - 100g cut into quarters, 100g cut in half
1 red onion, diced finely
2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
1 stick of celery, diced finely
1 tsp dried rosemary
half tsp dried thyme
750ml hot water
2 tsp chicken stock powder (low salt) or 2 chicken stock cubes (low salt).
Place the sweet potato and carrot chunks onto a baking tray and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil. Season with sea salt & pepper and put into a pre-heated oven at 200degC/400degF/Gas 6 for 30 mins or until softened and just beginning to caramelise.
Remove from the oven and set aside.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a frying pan and fry the quartered Chorizo until crispy. Remove from the pan onto a plate and reserve to keep warm. This Chorizo will form your garnish.
Add the halved Chorizo to the pan next and fry until lightly coloured. Remove from the pan onto a plate and set aside.
Decrease the heat under the pan and remove some of the oil to a small dish. Reserve the oil in case you need to replace any - and you can use a little of the remainder to garnish once the soup is served.
Add the onion, garlic and celery to the pan, along with a pinch of salt and a good helping of black pepper. Fry until softened but not coloured. Part way through, add the rosemary and thyme.
Once softened, decant the contents of the pan into a large saucepan, add the sweet potato, carrot, hot water and chicken stock powder. Heat through and taste for seasoning but before simmering point blitz with a hand-held blender until smooth. Add the halved Chorizo and stir through. Simmer, without boiling, to heat the soup through. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary - I found my soup needed more black pepper at this stage.
Serve in warmed bowls and add a spoonful of the quartered Chorizo and a swirl of Chorizo oil as garnish and warm crusty bread (or fresh baked American biscuits) for dipping.