Cock-a-leekie Soup

I seem to have been going Scottish this week, making Cherry Shortbread at the weekend and following up with Cock-a-leekie soup. Cock-a-leekie soup is a traditional Scottish soup, made with chicken and leeks and with the addition of prunes to sweeten the taste. It is often served on Burns Night (25th January) as a starter to the meal.  I haven’t eaten it for a long time, it is one of those dishes I have memories of eating but could not remember what it tasted like.

As I have a husband who has roots in Scotland it seemed appropriate to give it a try. I gathered the ingredients together and pulled out my big preserving pan, which used to be my Grannies. It is the only pan big enough to fit a whole chicken in. I was very pleased with the results, the soup is gorgeous. The leeks compliment the chicken and you can taste both flavours.

Cock-a-leekie soupBoth my husband and son asked me what the black things were in the soup and I had to explain they were prunes. It does seem a strange thing to add to the soup but actually the sweetness brings out the flavours of the soup. I imagine they were used in the olden days to make the soup more nutritious.

Cock-a-leekie soup

The soup went down very well, the whole family really enjoyed it and there was plenty left for seconds. It is a perfect winter soup, heart warming and full of goodness. The perfect soup to enjoy when you come in from the cold on a frosty day. The recipe makes loads as well, there was plenty left for the next day.

Cock-a-leekie soup
Serves 6
Cock-a-leekie soup is a traditional Scottish recipe made with chicken and leeks. It is warm and satisfying, the perfect pick me up on a cold day
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Ingredients
  1. 1 chicken
  2. 1 tbsp thyme
  3. black pepper
  4. 1 tsp rosemary
  5. 6 leeks
  6. 100 g prunes
Instructions
  1. Place the chicken in a large pan and just cover with cold water
  2. Cover the pan and simmer for around three hours until the chicken is tender and coming off the bones.
  3. Bring to the boil. A white foam will appear on the surface, skim this off.
  4. Chop the leeks and add the white part to the pan with the thyme and rosemary.
  5. Remove the chicken from the pan, discard the skin and bones. Shred the chicken and return to the pan with the rest of the chopped leeks and the prunes.
  6. Bring to the boil again and simmer for 15 minutes.
Dragons and Fairy Dust http://www.dragonsandfairydust.co.uk/

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Comments

Cock-a-leekie Soup — 11 Comments

  1. Mmm this does sound good. I’m in a very soupy mood with this weather (although can’t complain too much with sunshine in London in January, despite the chill).

    Like how this soup sounds vaguely French, vaguely nursery rhymey and I’ll have to pronounce it in a very bad Scottish accent ;-)

    I will have to dig around for your shortbread recipe too. That stuff is dangerous!
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