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Turnip, Bean and Watercress Soup

Can you think of anything more comforting than soup? Me neither! It is nutritious, beneficial and delicious. Portugal is the country that consumes the most soup in the world. It is present at lunch as a first course, or on its own as a light dinner. It is usually a baby's first solid meal. In my house all my children were given wholesome, simple, single ingredient soups from 5 months. Of course, it isn't just for children. Soup can be humble and it can be elegant. It is a one pot meal ready in under 30 minutes. It is all about how you dress it and what bowl you use. I often serve soup as a first course at my dinner parties, simply because I find it opens up the palette. They are usually light, smooth and velvety. I serve just a small bowl and dress it up with poached quails' eggs. They look so preen and posh. Everyone always asks for the recipe. My soups are the single most requested recipes on the blog. This recipe contains bacon and chicken stock. Feel free to omit the bacon and substitute with vegetable stock to make this vegetarian.

Turnip, Bean and Watercress Soup

Serves 4 as a main or 6 as a small starter

75 g. Watercress roughly chopped and reserved, leave 3-4 whole sprigs to throw in the pot

65 g. Italian smoked pancetta cubed

2 Turnips, 1roughly chopped and 1 cubed and reserved

3 Potatoes roughly cut

1 Cannellini Beans canned in Water (400g.) drained and half reserved

4 Carrots peeled, 3 roughly chopped and 1cubed and reserved

2 Chicken stock cubes

1tsp. Extra virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling