Simple but rich and intensely flavoured, a special occasion soup. As always when making soup, if you are using stock cubes rather than homemade or 'fresh' stock, make them up half strength. Otherwise your soup will taste of the cube, not the fresh ingredients.
450 g (1 lb) shelled walnuts
40 g (1 1/2 oz) butter
50 g (2 oz) flour
salt and 1/4 tsp cayenne
1.6 litres (3 pints) chicken stock
300 ml (10 fl oz) single cream
1. Grind the walnuts to a powder. Heat the butter, and stir in the flour.
2. Add the salt and cayenne. Gradually add the chicken stock, stirring all the time.
3. Add the walnuts, lower the heat and cook gently for about 20 minutes.
4. Stir in the cream and serve the soup really hot.
5. Garnish fashionably with pomegranate seeds, chopped chives or croutons.