Monday, March 4, 2013

Spinach - cream cheese soup

I bought for the tort Milanese one extra bunch of fresh spinach which was already cooked, waiting for ... something. Not to mention the big bunch of chives left unused. The amount was too small to make anything proper with spinach, but felt sorry for throwing it away. Faith (there are no coincidences :D) made me lift an old Koti&Keittiö from the shelf to relax before going to bed, and I found a soup..
Well, I found almost this soup, but I changed some spices to reflect the Hungarian taste or nobody would bother eating it in the family. In addition, the recipe was calling for feta cheese, but I had only cream cheese in the fridge.
Here is what I came up with, an almost Hungarian spinach soup, with less spinach and cream cheese.

Ingredients (makes 4-6 portions, ready in ~40 min)
300 g fresh spinach, about 1 large bunch
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp white flour
1 l milk
1 tsp salt
1 clove(s) garlic, very finely chopped, optional :)
pinch of black pepper
pinch of nutmeg
150 g cream cheese (I added ~6 tbsp cream cheese)
1/2 small bunch of chives (1 large tbsp chopped chives)
1 tbsp fresh chopped Italian parsley

If you ask me, this asks for a dash (or two) of white wine :). I like creamy soups with vinegar or lemon zest, but this soup somehow didn't ask for neither of them but rather a little bit of dry white wine. I added about 50 ml. You decide how you like it, this is absolutely optional.

fresh bread, croutons, toasted bread cubes

Rinse the spinach and in a small pot with boiling water boil them for about 5 min. Drain, chop it a bit finer.
In a larger (2 litres) pot melt the butter, saute the garlic (if any) for some seconds, add the flour and fry until gets a very light golden color. Basically make a so called rántás. Poor in the milk mixing continuously, and cook it until the top starts bubbling.
Add the spinach, chives, spices and cream cheese, and boil it together for additional 10 minutes.
I mixed the cream cheese in a bowl with some soup until became smooth before adding it to the soup, just to make sure I won't have bigger cheese balls left.
Adjust thickness with extra water if wished. Adjust saltiness with the 1 tsp salt, or as much you feel is needed.
Serve with some fresh bread, or toasted bread cubes.

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