Top | Heather Arndt Anderson

Scandinavian Nettle Soup

(recipe, Heather Arndt Anderson)


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Introduction

Nässelsoppa is a traditional Scandinavian nettle soup; here it's tweaked slightly by adding fresh dill. Sliced or chopped hard-boiled egg is the traditional garnish, but chive crème fraîche is a nice deviation from the norm.

Ingredients

  1. 10 cups washed nettle leaves (about ½ lb. of leaves)
  2. ½ cup finely chopped onion
  3. 3 cloves finely chopped garlic
  4. ¼ cup plus 1 tsp. chopped chives
  5. 3 Tbsp. butter, preferably European-style cultured
  6. 2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
  7. 1 tsp. dried thyme
  8. ½ tsp. ground nutmeg (or ¼ tsp. freshly grated)
  9. 1 tsp. salt
  10. ½ tsp. white pepper
  11. 2 cups cream or half-and-half
  12. ¼ cup fresh dill, chopped
  13. 4 Tbsp. crème fraîche

Steps

  1. Bring a deep pot of water and 1 tablespoon salt to a rolling boil. Blanch the nettles for 30 seconds. Drain.
  2. In a soup pot, sauté the onions, garlic, and ¼ cup of the chives in the butter over medium heat until the onions are softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the blanched nettles and the chicken stock, thyme, and nutmeg. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until tender, about 15 minutes.
  4. Add the cream or half-and-half and the dill. Using an immersion or regular blender, blend until smooth and then reheat the soup until warmed through. Meanwhile, mix the remaining 1 teaspoon minced chives with the crème fraîche.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste, then top with the chive crème fraîche. Serve hot.