Tomato and Courgette Soup

A delicious soup, Tomato and Courgette Soup is a meal in itself, served with crusty bread.

2 lb. ripe tomatoes, blanched, peeled and chopped

6 courgettes , trimmed, blanched and chopped

3 pints chicken stock

2 oz. butter

1 oz. flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

1 teaspoons sugar

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill

4 fl. oz. sour cream

Garnished with watercress, Tomato Aspic is a delicious first course served with mayonnaise.

Place the tomatoes, courgettes and half the chicken stock in a large, heavy-based saucepan. Set the pan over high heat and bring the liquid to the boil, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to moderately low and simmer the mixture for 15 to 20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter over moderate heat. Remove the pan from the heat and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Stir in 4 tablespoons of the soup liquid and stir until the mixture is well blended.

Pour the mixture back into the saucepan containing the soup. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes or until the soup is smooth and has thickened. Gradually add the remaining stock, stirring constantly, and bring the mixture to the boil. Add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, sugar, parsley and dill, stirring constantly. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the soup into a large, warmed tureen.

Stir in the sour cream and serve immediately.

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