Soup isn’t necessarily the first thing that springs to mind when Mexican food is mentioned.
Most countries cuisines when the obvious dishes are ignored have great dishes that often follow a similar theme. Soups are a classic example.
Which cuisine doesn’t have a simple soup of local seasonal vegetables cooked with a meat stock?
The Mexican or more correctly the Oaxacan version of this is Sopa de Guia a fresh, clean and light soup based around courgette (zucchini).
This recipe is less rustic as “real” sopa de guia. Rather than having large bits of vegetable floating in a thin broth this version partly blends the soup to create a more silky yet still light soup.
It’s a great soup if you grow your own, even on a small scale. Courgettes will be really productive in a medium pot on the patio. This is what inspired me. I looked out onto my deck and saw some flowering courgettes, a swiss chard plant and a spinach plant. My herb trough had a thyme and an oregano plant.
For 2 servings you’ll need:
1 courgette in small dice
1 handful of swiss chard leaves
1 handful of spinach
1 white onion in small dice
1-2 crushed garlic cloves
1 stick celery diced small
Pinch of fresh thyme and fresh oregano
Scanty pinch of tarragon
1 Cup of sweetcorn
1 pint of good stock (chicken or pork – I used trotter gear- see link)
4-5 courgette flowers
Chopped spring onions
Fry off the courgette, garlic, celery until softened. Add the chard, herbs, corn, spring onions, courgette flowers (stamen removed).
Then add the stock and boil for a few minutes.
This can be the end point if you want a traditional sopa. To make this special I recommend half blending with a stick blender, only so much to make the broth cloudy and more soup like.
Serve with chopped spring onions, a chilli oil and coriander.
[A great added garnish is some home made micro-chicharron. Using the skin from some BBQ pulled pork chop into very thin strips. Drop into hot oil and after 30 seconds remove and pat down with kitchen paper. Serve on the side or scattered on top.]