chervil soup


This is a traditional Belgian recipe.

Chervil is a relative of parsley and cilantro. Chervil has a very delicate flavor that is destroyed by overlong cooking, freezing and drying. It also has such a short shelf-life when fresh that it is never available in the stores here in small-town America.

The only way I could ever enjoy real chervil soup  is to grow it myself. Unfortunately, chervil requires temperate cool weather to grow well, and we don's see much of that here in the NM desert. It's either freezing or blazing hot and neither of those work for delicate chervil. So sadly enough, the closest I have been to the real thing are the commercial packages which are rather poor imitations. (Pic1+2)

Popular variations are with meatballs (the tinier, the better,) with white asparagus and with potatoes.


Pic1: chervil soup
Pic2: with cream


This is what you need for 4 servings:

  • 2 bunches of chervil (1 lb.)
  • 1 cup spinach, chopped
  • 1 small potato, diced
  • 6" leek white, chopped
  • ½ medium white onion
  • 1 qt. chicken stock
  • ½ lb. ground meat, veal or pork
  • olive oil
  • S&P


  • Slice, dice, chop all the vegetables fine.
    Rinse thoroughly. Keep the chervil separate.
  • Sauté the chopped vegetables with half of the chervil until the onions turn transparent.
  • Add 2 cups of water, S&P to taste.
  • Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.
  • Make little meatballs with the ground meat. Boil them in the chicken stock until they float at the surface.
  • Reserve the meatballs. Add the stock to the soup.
  • Use a stick or cup blender to puree all the vegetables in the soup.
  • Add the remainder of the chervil.
  • Simmer 2 minutes and blend again.
    This time, you can blend only part or all of the chervil. I prefer only part.
  • Remove from the heat. Add the meatballs and rest a few minutes to let them warm them through.
  • Serve and enjoy.
  • Serving suggestions:
    • garnish with a branch of fresh chervil. (Pic5)
    • Stir 1 tbsp. of heavy cream into each bowl. (Pic7)

Chervil Soup on the internet


Pic23: fresh chervil ...
Pic4: ... in the soup
Pic5: blended


Pic6: serve with garnish
Pic7: with meatballs
Pic8: cream, poached egg

Growing chervil at home


Pic9: 2013-08-15
Pic10: 2013-08-22