Spring Tonic – Bitter Greens Soup

From Katrina Hall, She’s In the Kitchen Blog

As a longtime student of herbs, both culinary and medicinal, as soon as the snow melts and the herbs start peeping up, thoughts turn to the spring ritual of tonics and bitter greens. I usually make a thin soup of two or three kinds of bitter greens and puree it, pour it in a mug, and sit outside looking up at the sky and the trees. Pure contentment. You can FEEL your body waking up and shedding the heaviness of winter!  If you feel adventurous, you can snip your own dandelion greens, or new nettles ( wear gloves!) but I opted for a mix of fresh rapini and watercress, with a little parsley for detoxification. After a few sips, I thought a spoonful of my garlicy homemade herb cheese would add a little pizazz, so in it went. Just delicious!

To make the soup:
3 cups homemade chicken stock
salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
3 cups chopped rapini or dandelion greens (no stems)
3 cups chopped watercress or stinging nettles (stems ok)
1/2 cup chopped Italian parsley (stems ok)

Bring the stock to a simmer and add the greens. Cook for ten minutes, then take off heat.  Using an immersion blender, puree soup. Pour into mugs or bowls and serve with a heaping soup-spoonful of herb cheese, stirring it into the soup as you sip it.

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