It's a fantastic winter warmer, served topped with crispy bacon and crusty buttered bread roll.
I first encountered this style of soup in Dorset, UK, where the cheese, 'Blue Vinney', had a stirring myth of once being 'illegal'.
It's not a common cheese though, so I often use Stilton, or other crumbly textured blue cheese.
This is a simple soup to make, few ingredients to worry about and hard to get wrong.
Step 1: Ingredients
1 tbsp vegetable or other flavourless oil
1 tbsp plain flour
1 medium leek, chopped
6-7 sticks celery chopped
250g of Blue Vinney (or other crumbly blue cheese, such as Stilton)
900ml of Vegetable stock (you can use weak chicken stock)
150-200ml single cream
6-8 rashers of smokey bacon
1 medium potato peeled and diced
1 large onion instead of the leek
My leek looked a little ropey, so I used part of that and an onion too.
Step 2: The base
- Heat the oil and butter together in a good sized cooking pot.
- Add the leek, or onion and sweat relatively gently until soft, you don't want it to brown.
- Add the celery and potato if using and cook until for a few minutes. (yeah, I forgot the potato, but added it at the next step)
- Tip in the flour, stirring well to coat eveything and cook for a minute of so. This is just there to help thicken the soup, but you do want to cook the flour out or it leaves a chalky taste.
- Now add the stock and bring to the boil, make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen any flour that may have stuck.
- Cover and simmer for around 30 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
Step 3: Finishing up
- Now that the stock base is cooked though remove from the heat and stir in the cream. You may want to let the stock cool a little first so it doesn't split, or just stir really quickly.
- Now crumble in the cheese and stir until it melts, you can return it to a gentle heat to help it along now that the cream has been well mixed, but don't boil it again or it may split.
- I then like to blend using a hand/stick blender.
Step 4: Serve
A warm crispy roll with butter is always a welcome accompaniment