Bubble and squeak soup

Nigel Slater throws his Christmas leftovers into the pan and comes up with a rich and satisfying soup.


  • a medium-sized onion

  • 2 tablespoons of dripping or butter

  • 750g/1lb 10oz leftover roasted or boiled potatoes and parsnips

  • 1 teaspoon chopped thyme leaves

  • 1.5 litres/2½pints turkey, chicken or vegetable stock

  • salt and ground black pepper

  • 350g/12oz lightly cooked leftover greens (such as cabbage or Brussels sprouts)

  • 150ml/5fl oz single cream

  • a fine grating of fresh nutmeg

Preparation method

  1. Peel and slice the onion. Melt the dripping or butter in a large, deep saucepan and add the sliced onions. Let them cook for 15 minutes or so with a regular stir, until they are soft and sweet.

  2. Chop the cooked potatoes into small pieces and add to the onions with the chopped thyme leaves. As soon as the potatoes are warmed through, pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Season, lower the heat to an enthusiastic simmer and leave, partially covered with a lid, for 25 minutes or so.

  3. Chop the cooked greens and stir them into the soup. Don’t worry if they still have some butter clinging to them. Continue to simmer for 15 minutes.

  4. Ladle two-thirds of the soup into a food processor and blend until smooth. Return the blended soup to the pan containing the remaining unblended soup. Add the cream and a grating of nutmeg and bring to the boil, then stir and pour into warm bowls. Bread isn’t necessary here but might be welcome if you aren’t having it with a sandwich.

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