Friday, 21 March 2014

Squash and Cumin Soup

I made a couple of alterations to Sarah Raven's recipe as we don't like garlic but Andy does like 'hot'!

2 medium squash
3 heaped teaspoons cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 medium onions chopped finely
large knob butter
750ml chicken stock

Heat oven to 190 degrees or Mark 5.  Cut squash in half, scoop out seeds, drizzle with oil and cook until soft.  About 1 hour.
Heat the seeds in a dry pan for a few minutes then mix them with the cayenne pepper.  Fry onions in butter until soft add cooked squash scooped from skins, seed mix and stock.  Simmer and season to taste.  Easy!

Minestrone Soup

 Vegetables (carrots, onions, runner beans, peas and potatoes but anything else will do!)
1tbsp oil
1tbsp chopped sage or basil
Half tsp celery salt (optional)
Tin chopped tomatoes
3pints chicken stock
2 handfuls pasta
 Parsley to garnish

Chop up six large carrots, a large onion, a handful of runner beans/peas and six potatoes.  Heat a small amount of oil in a large pan and fry the vegetables for a few minutes with a table spoon of fresh finely chopped sage (or two teaspoons of dried) and half a teaspoon of celery salt (you can add chopped celery but I don't because Andy doesn't like it!).  Add a tin of chopped tomatoes and 3 pints of chicken stock and seasoning.  Bring to the boil then simmer for about an hour and a half.  Add two handfuls of pasta.  Cook for a further half hour.  Sprinkle with parsley and serve with freshly cut bread and grated cheese.

You can fry bacon in the pan before frying the vegetables and use basil instead of sage to get a slightly different taste.  You can also throw in whatever vegetables you have available.

Leek and Potato Soup

4 - 6 leeks
2 small onions
4-6 medium potatoes
1.5 pints chicken stock
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon thyme
Chop up the onions and saute in a little oil.  Slice the leeks into 1/2 inch pieces and add to onions.  Peel and thinly slice potatoes.  Put all three in a large pan and cover with the chick stock.  Add the herbs and seasoning. Boil for about ten minutes (bit longer if potatoes need it). 
Pour into a blender to reduce the chunky bits. 
You can add milk (or creme fraiche) to make it thicker but I just served it as it was.