Watercress soup with bacon dumplings

Contains pork – recipe is for non-Muslims only
Take this simple green soup from light lunch to dinner party starter with a mouth-watering, meaty garnish of streaky bacon dumplings

  • Prep:30 mins
    Cook:30 mins
  • Serves 6
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 306
  • fat 12g
  • saturates 5g
  • carbs 34g
  • sugars 6g
  • fibre 6g
  • protein 12g
  • salt 2.2g


  • 25g butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 4 large floury potatoes (about 800g/ 1lb 12oz), chopped into small cubes
  • 200g watercress, leaves picked and stalks chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh horseradish, grated (about 25g/1oz unpeeled weight)
  • 1½ l vegetable stock
  • olive oil, for drizzling (optional)
  • 8 streaky bacon rashers, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp fresh breadcrumbs
  • small pack flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped


Get ahead

If you want to get ahead, make the soup the day before and reheat just before serving. You can also make the dumplings a day in advance. Roll, cover and leave in the fridge, ready to be cooked in the soup.


  1. To make the dumplings, mix the bacon with the breadcrumbs and parsley. Shape into 18 balls – the bacon fat will hold the dumplings together. Cover and put in the fridge.

  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the garlic and onions, and cook for 10 mins until soft. Add the potatoes, watercress stalks and horseradish, and cook for a few mins more, then add the stock and bring everything to a simmer.

  3. When the potatoes are tender (this should take 8-10 mins), stir in most of the watercress leaves, put the dumplings into the soup and let them poach for 3-4 mins or until cooked through.

  4. Gently lift out the dumplings with a slotted spoon and put to one side. Whizz the soup in a blender and season. Divide between 6 bowls and top each with 3 dumplings. Drizzle with olive oil, if you like, and serve with the reserved watercress leaves on top and plenty of black pepper.

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