As ever there is an abundant crop of Jerusalem artichokes in the garden. You either love them or hate them... fortunately I love them! Here is my favourite soup.
2 lb (900g) Jerusalem artichokes – scrubbed, peeled if you prefer, and roughly cubed
2 onions peeled and chopped
2 carrots roughly chopped
1 clove of garlic chopped
1 sage leaf
1 bay leaf
2½ pints (1.5 litres) vegetable stock
Put all the ingredients into a large saucepan and simmer until the vegetables are soft about 30 minutes. Blend the soup in a food processor until smooth. I leave the bay and sage in the soup but if your blender is not very powerful you may prefer to remove them. Return the soup to the pan and season well, heat through and pour into bowls. Served with a dollop of harissa it is quite divine.
Plenty of chillies this year so it's really worth making harissa – it keeps you warm in the cold Winter months.
10 finely chopped red chillies
2 shallots finely chopped
2 cloves garlic finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 red peppers de-seeded, roast and skinned red peppers
1 tablespoon toasted cumin seeds
Gently cook the chillies, shallots and garlic in the olive oil for 5 minutes
In a pestle and mortar grind the cumin and slowly work in the chilli mixture along with the peppers until you have a well mixed paste. Stores well in the fridge for about 6 weeks.