Arcola Green Sunday and Leek Soup

Yesterday I was lucky enough to be asked to speak and read from my book at the first of the Arcola Green Sundays. Held at the Arcola Theatre in Hackney, the worlds first carbon neutral theatre, the whole day was a complete success. 
Exploring environmental themes through film, music, spoken word, games and discussion, yesterdays focus was on sustainable food. With some delicious sustainable eats (amazing brownies) from the Water House restaurant, an evocative film from ICA and a presentation from Friends Of The Earth the day had a laid back Sunday afternoon feel and I could think of no better way to spend a weekend. I returned home feeling informed, rested and well fed. It doesn't get any better…
In my short section I focussed on the ways food is treated in the small villages in the highlands of Oxhaca and after my short reading I handed out some recipes for Pozole, a hearty Mexican stew and because it was St Davids Day a old recipe for leek soup. 
For more information about Green Sundays at Arcola have a look at the Arcola Energy Website.
“Now Leeks are season, for pottage full good,
And sparethh the milch cow. And purgeth the blood
These having with peason, for pottage in Lent 
Though spareth both oatmeal and bread to be spent”
Thomas Tusser (1524–1580) 

• 6 rashers streaky bacon, shredded. 
• 2 onions, sliced. 
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed. 
• Thyme and rosemary, chopped. 
• 2 pints chicken stock 
• 4 baking potatoes; peeled and diced 1/2 inch thick 
• 2 leeks, finely sliced. 
• 1 tablespoon of flat leaf parsley, chopped. 
• 30 grams butter. 
• 2 tbs of oats 
• 1 sprig chervil. 

1. In a heavy pan gently fry the bacon until brown, and set aside. 

2. In the same pan fry the onions, garlic, thyme and rosemary until golden. 

3. Add the chicken stock. 

4. Now add the baking potatoes.
5. Cook the contents gently until the potatoes are soft. Add the bacon and leeks to the mix and leave to cool. 

6. To serve reheat until simmering then add flat leaf parsley. 

7. Now stir in the diced butter to add some richness to the soup along with the oats. 

8. Stir well and serve in bowls garnished with sprigs of chervil and a hunk of crusty bread. 


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