Watercress Soup with Pickled Cucumbers


Quick-pickled cucumber slices give this delicate, fresh-tasting soup a little zing.

Watercress Soup with Pickled Cucumbers
Photo: © John Kernick
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large leek, white and tender green parts only, thinly sliced

  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 2 cups water

  • One 8-ounce Yukon Gold potato, peeled and sliced 1/3 inch thick

  • 1/2 pound watercress, coarsely chopped (5 cups)

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 1 cup skim milk

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 1/2 European cucumber, peeled

  • 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar


  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the leek and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, 3 minutes. Add the broth and water and bring to a boil. Add the potato, cover and simmer over low heat until tender, about 15 minutes. Add the watercress and cook until bright green, about 2 minutes.

  2. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. Return the soup to the saucepan. Add the whole and skim milk and season with salt and pepper; keep warm.

  3. Meanwhile, trim the peeled cucumber to form a rectangle. Cut the cucumber crosswise into very thin slices. In a medium bowl, combine the rice vinegar with a large pinch of salt. Add the cucumber slices and toss well. Let stand until they have softened, about 5 minutes.

  4. Ladle the soup into bowls. Garnish with cucumber slices and serve.

Make Ahead

The soup can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.


One Serving 112 cal, 7 gm fat, 1.5 gm sat fat, 9 gm carb, 0.9 gm fiber.

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