delivery of a small loaf of freshly baked brown bread six days a week. Most days we ate about three-quarters of the loaf so I started to look around for recipes to use up the remainder. Waste not, want not and all that. This frugal bread soup recipe is vaguely based on an idea in the book Portuguese Homestyle Cooking that I first mentioned when we tried its Baked Salmon recipe. The soup recipe in the book is called Acorda a Alentejana (page 44) although if you know the original, you might not recognise what I actually ended up creating here! The texture of my soup as I served it was similar to a coarse mushroom soup and it was delicious!
3 inch pieces of chourico (ends and curve of a ring)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried parsley
salt and pepper
1 vegetable stock cube
1 pint water
day-old brown bread (I had about half a small loaf)
Heat the chorizo in a saucepan until the oils start to run.
Add the garlic, herbs, seasoning and crumbled stock cube. Add the water and cover the pan. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
When the stock is simmering, remove the crust from the bread and tear into roughly inch-square pieces.
Remove pan from the heat and add the bread, pushing it under the liquid. Recover the pan and leave for five minutes so the bread can soak up the stock.
When the bread cannot absorb any more stock, stir it to break up the bread into a thick sort-of puree.
Serve immediately while soup is still warm.