Chilled Wild Watercress Soup

Serves 4-6


For Soup

  • 1 lb wild watercress, leaves & stems separated
  • 1 russet potato, peeled & chopped
  • 1 onion, peeled & quartered
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled & crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 springs thyme
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 tbsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • kosher salt
  • water to cover
  • ΒΌ lb butter, cubed & chilled

Serving Suggestions

  • cracked black pepper
  • verjus (unripened grape juice) or Champagne vinegar
  • miner's lettuce
  • edible flowers


  • piece of cheese cloth & butcher's twine
  • blender
  • fine mesh strainer


  1. Combine potato, onion, garlic and watercress stems in a pot. Cover by a few inches with water, and season with salt
  2. Wrap herbs, whole black pepper and coriander up in a piece of cheesecloth, tie with butcher's twine and add to the pot
  3. Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer and cook until potato is done, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, discard the sachet of herbs and pass through a fine mesh strainer, reserving the cooking liquid. Set aside
  4. Bring a separate pot of salted water to a boil and blanch watercress tops until tender, 1 minute
  5. Transfer tops to an ice bath to "shock" and stop the cooking
  6. In blender, combine the cooked, drained vegetables, the blanched watercress tops, a few ice cubes from the water bath (this will preserve the vibrant green color) and a bit of the reserved cooking liquid. Blend until smooth
  7. Slowly add chilled, diced butter while blending
  8. Pass the soup through a fine mesh strainer into a container set over an ice bath. Transfer container in the ice bath to the refrigerator to chill, about 20 minutes (this will help retain the color)
  9. Remove from ice bath and season with salt & pepper if desired
  10. Ladle into bowls and season with cracked black pepper. Drizzle with verjus or Champagne vinegar, garnish with young lettuce (Josh uses miner's lettuce) and edible flowers if desired