About this recipe:This vibrant, vitamin-packed soup is so easy to make, yet it tastes ridiculously good! The bonus is that it’s low in fat and calories, yet it fills you up to make you feel satisfied. The surprising ingredient is quinoa – which enriches and thickens the soup, adding valuable protein and giving an interesting texture and flavour.
1 (30g) piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
1L hot vegetable stock
200g young leaf spinach
200g low fat soft cheese
3 tablespoons milk
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
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Method Prep:10min › Cook:20min › Ready in:30min
Rinse the quinoa in a sieve under the cold tap, then put it into a saucepan with a pinch of salt and double the volume of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 15 to 20 minutes for red quinoa and 8 to 10 minutes for white. Drain off any liquid from the quinoa, and set to one side.
At the same time, put the onion, leek, garlic and ginger into a large saucepan with the vegetable stock. Bring up to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Reserve a few spinach leaves for garnish, then pack the rest into the saucepan with the other vegetables – it will soon wilt. Cook for 2 minutes.
Puree the soup with a hand-held stick blender, or transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth. Add 150g of the soft cheese and blend again. Stir in the quinoa and re-heat gently. Season to taste.
Mix the remaining soft cheese with the milk, stirring until smooth. Serve the soup topped with a swirl of the soft cheese mixture, a couple of spinach leaves and a little more black pepper.
Cook’s tip: Cooking the spinach for just a couple of minutes means that it keeps its lovely bright green colour – and means it retains nutrients too.