I was hugely pleased before Christmas to receive a sample pack ( A HUGE sample pack...) of the most delicious watercress from The Watercress Company . I stuffed it into egg mayonnaise sandwiches, I made huge beds of it under chargrilled steaks, I made soup and kebabs with watercress salad and watercress rice. It is such a good salad vegetable and can also be used as a herb, rather like you would parsley. I can't get enough of it.
The soup is simplicity itself, just some potato and leeks or onions simmered in stock until very tender, watercress then added (no weighing really, just trust your judgement as to how much you need, LARGE handfuls though, more than you think...it does wilt down. You want the soup to taste of watercress, not potato) and allowed to wilt down until softened. Then blitz with a hand blender until smooth (or use a normal blender). It can be kept at this stage for a while and reheated just before serving. Once reheated, check the seasoning, add another large handful of cress and blitz immediately. The raw cress will give the soup a wonderful bright green colour,and the flavour will be lively and hot and spicy.
The kebabs are simple, lamb cubes marinated in oil, lemon juice and oregano, skewered with peppers and onions and grilled until tender and well charred along the edges. Whilst the lamb is cooking, cook basmati rice and steam to dry it off thoroughly. Before serving, use a fork (not a spoon) and mix in a good couple of handfuls of finely chopped watercress.
Healthy eating... not half!