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Showing posts from May, 2011

Fennel Soup with Beans, Thyme and Chorizo

Fennel Soup with Beans, Thyme and Chorizo
It's been all go in Minnie's kitchen in the last hour. The plan was: go to shop for ingredients, make soup, wait for younger offspring to come home from after-school activities, bring him to a training session, come home later, warm up soup, have dinner and prepare for going away for the weekend. I went to the shops, arrived home, started chopping the vegetables for the soup and then the phone rang. I asked the older offspring to answer it and to tell anyone who was looking for me that I'd ring them back. It was the spouse ringing to let me know the younger offspring was at a friend's house and had hurt himself. By this time I was starting to cook the onion and fennel. I set the older offspring to stirring while I tried to phone the mother of the younger offspring's friend. It took three calls to establish that my child was not seriously injured and the older offspring was dispatched to bring him home (the spouse is away).

Lovage Soup

Lovage Soup
Today I made lovage soup, the second recipe by Sophie Grigson in The Soup Book that I have used in the last four days. She introduces the recipe with these remarks: "If you don't grow this old-fashioned herb yourself, ask around among your gardening friends or head down to the nearest garden centre to see if they sell it. " As I mentioned in my last blog entry (18th May), lovage now features among the herbs in my front garden. As the spouse left the camera at home, I took some photographs.






















 I had hoped to add chervil to my collection of herbs - there's a recipe for vegetable and chervil soup in The Soup Book - but "Young Stephen" wasn't able to source any for me. At least he tried. Just while I'm mentioning Stephen, I have to reveal that the spouse and the older offspring claim that he has been mentioned in my blog more often than either of them. I'm not going to dignify their complaints by counting the references to any of them.

Ba…

Sorrel Soup

Sorrel Soup
In her introduction to the recipe for sorrel soup Sophie Grigson describes it as "a real tonic on a chilly spring day." Today is a cool windy day in late spring. This soup may be served either hot or cold, but today calls for hot soup. The ingredients include large-leaved sorrel, an onion, potatoes, a bay leaf, sprigs of parsley and thyme, chicken or vegetable stock, and cream or Greek yoghurt. Sophie specifies three "big handfuls" of sorrel, but how much is that? What is a big handful? What is a big hand? I had to guess. I planted sorrel a few weeks ago and it seems to be growing well. I harvested all the biggest leaves and hoped for the best. I had hoped to take photographs of the sorrel before I cut it but the spouse was hiding his cameras in his office!

For years I have bought pre-packed and pre-washed vegetables, so standing at the kitchen sink to wash the sorrel leaves brought me back to days of carefully washing lettuce at my parents' insiste…

Mulligatawny

Mulligatawny

As usual, the spouse did the shopping this morning. He brought home a chicken, saying that they were cheap today and he would make stock with it. So I thought that I would check in The Soup Book to see if there were any recipes calling for cooked chicken. That's how I decided upon mulligatawny.  The recipe in The Soup Book is by Roopa Gulati, who describes it in her introduction as "as Anglo-Indian soup from colonial days." Although I have Anglo-Indian antecedents (in the original definition of the term), mulligatawny did not feature in my Anglo-Indian parent's repertoire of dishes. I do, however, remember eating a canned version of it.

Today's recipe lists the following ingredients: onion, root ginger, garlic, apple, carrot, celery, mild curry powder, flour, tomatoes, tomato puree, hot chicken stock, bay leaves, coconut milk and cooked chicken. As the weekly shop had been done by the time I had picked out this soup, I was running the risk of…

Carrot Cream with Onion and Cumin

Carrot Cream with Onion and Cumin
Last weekend I observed that I was progressing slowly through the summer vegetables section of  The Soup Book (only fifteen out of fifty-eight or twenty-five per cent) so this weekend I decided I'd better tackle the deficit. The recipe for carrot cream is by Marie-Pierre Moine, the author of four recipes I have already used. The ingredients include onions, cumin seeds, ground cumin, carrots, an orange, cream and parsley. In her introduction Moine says that making this soup is "fiddly" but "worth the effort". I didn't find it too fiddly. She was referring to liquidising and sieving the soup, but I have become accustomed to this level of effort after sixteen months of soup-making.
The spouse, the older offspring and I had the completed carrot cream for our lunch (the younger offspring was enjoying being off our leash). We all enjoyed it, the spouse citing the orange tanginess while the cream did it for me. It's not up the…