This “big soup” is a chunky broth, almost a stew. It is a great dish for using up the last odds and ends of vegetables, and one that reheats really well, too. The basic requirements are onion and garlic, a grain, good stock and lots of vegetables, but you can liven it up with chorizo or bacon, by stirring in pesto or by sprinkling over gremolata. I use all organic ingredients – which means it’s perfect for Organic September, a campaign dedicated to growing the organic market.
Prep time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 35 mins
2 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cooking chorizo sausages, skins removed, crumbled into small pieces
1 dried red chilli or a good pinch of chilli flakes, to taste
4 tomatoes (peeled if you have time), finely chopped, or 1 tbsp tomato puree
150g pearled spelt, rinsed well and drained
1.5 litres chicken or vegetable stock
200g curly kale or cavolo nero, leaves stripped from their stalks and roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper
Heat the oil in a pan over a low heat. Add the onion and fry gently for 10 minutes, stirring now and then to stop it catching, until soft and translucent. Add the chorizo and fry, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes more.
Stir in the chilli, tomatoes, spelt and stock, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, blanch and squeeze the kale. Add the kale to the pan and cook for a further 15 minutes or until the spelt is tender.
Keep an eye on the liquid and top up a little if needed. Check the seasoning before serving.