Serves 6

2 tablespoons good olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 medium onion, chopped small
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
8 small zucchinis (about 1 ¼ kgs), thinly sliced
2 cups purslane (discard any large, tough stems – they can be pickled if you like)
Salt to taste
5 cups water
4 tablespoons chopped basil
Freshly ground pepper

1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and salt and cook over moderate heat until soft and translucent. Stir in the thyme and bay leaf and cook until fragrant; about 1 minute. Add the sliced zucchini and the purslane, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender; about 8 minutes. 2. Add 3 cups of the water and bring to a boil, then remove the saucepan from the heat. Discard the bay leaf and stir in the basil. Add 2 cups of cold water, then allow the soup to cool a little further.
3. Puree the soup until very smooth. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, until thoroughly chilled.
4. Season the soup with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into shallow bowls and decorate with a few purslane sprigs and zucchini shavings if you like. Add a drizzle of olive oil and some cracked pepper and serve.