The Cottage Smallholder

stumbling self sufficiency in a small space

Skinflint soup recipe: broccoli stalk, last week’s courgettes and post Christmas Stilton combine and rule

skinflint soupI hate throwing out the thick broccoli (calibrese) stalks. The Penultimate Paramour used to chop them and use them in stir fries but they always tasted a bit rough and to be quite honest, stalky. They are tough miniature tree trunks and probably needed a bit more time than a quick whisk in a hot pan.

This morning I tottered downstairs. Before you could say “bacon sandwich” I was chopping an onion. I had an hour before leaving for work. The broccoli stalk was going to be the heart of a tasty soup. Poking about in the fridge I found some courgettes and remembered that a few years ago I’d made a wonderful courgette soup. So I chopped up 3 small ones and tossed them in too. We are not overly keen on courgettes but I had bought them for a wonderful veggie dish that I will posting soon.

I am testing out all the vegetable stock cubes that are available in darkest East Anglia. As the courgettes and b stalk soup combination could be disappointing, I used the deluxe Just Bouillon cubes to give the vegetables a fighting chance. I wanted a thickish soup but you could add a potato (skinned and sliced) during the simmering stage and another half pint of stock for a lighter, more economical soup.

Skinflint soup tasted pretty good before the adding the Christmas Stilton (a good mature cheddar would work equally well). The cheese gave the soup that extra vroom. Verdict – so tasty that we will never throw a broccoli stalk away again. This soup was a welcome blue sky change on a rainy day.

The ingredients made 3x400ml hearty servings.

Skinflint soup recipe


  • 1 medium onion (chopped)
  • I large stalk from a head of broccoli with three decent florets (florets are essential to give the specks of darker green at the end). Washed and chopped small. Florets sliced off and added towards the end.
  • 250g of courgettes, Washed and sliced
  • 800ml of vegetable stock (I used two Just Bouillon vegetable stock cubes)
  • 50-75g of elderly stilton (depending on taste)
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Sweat the onions in a tbsp of olive gently for 15 minutes or so until they become soft and translucent.
  2. Meanwhile wash and chop your broccoli stalk into small pieces (0.5cm) and reserve the florets. Slice courgettes and prepare your stock.
  3. Add the stock and vegetables, bring to simmering point and simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Add the florets (chopped) and simmer for three minutes or so until they are tender.
  4. Liquidise (I used my hand blender) and add the crumbled Stilton. Stir to dissolve. Check for seasoning and adjust if necessary.

  Leave a reply


  1. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Lorna,

    I reckon that the giblets are sold to the stock manufacturers! We were given the giblets with the Christmas goose and Danny made wonderful gravy with them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags are not allowed.

2,269,827 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments

Copyright © 2006-2024 Cottage Smallholder      Our Privacy Policy      Advertise on Cottage Smallholder

Skip to toolbar