I’m a great fan of soup. Not only because it’s so easy, delicious and portable, but also because of the pure comfort factor – without the glycemic high you’d get from starchy “dry” carbs (bread, baked potato, rice etc). Our bodies are 60 percent water so it makes sense to sip right?
Strictly speaking this isn’t a recipe blog, and I’m guessing that most of you readers know your way around a kitchen anyway and have shelves groaning with recipe books. At the same time we’re all guilty of getting into a bit of a cooking rut sometimes – especially when we have to plan, shop for and produce a meal lickety split after a long day in the office or wherever you work (and yes I count house-keeping as work!). Maybe you also have children cycling their bikes into the kitchen or tearing each other’s hair out in the next room, and possibly a famished significant other pacing around wild-eyed with hunger, and a pile of washing to put on and bills to sort through… You get the picture.
As I’ve said before, while cooking can be fun it can also be a terrible chore if you don’t stay in control of the situation. This is where the nasty prepared meals, frozen pizzas and take-aways creep in, and we all have to be careful not to overindulge in those. So… I guess what I’m trying to do here is give you some ideas, combinations, permutations, and (most importantly I think) encouragement. Hopefully you can draw down on this when you need a bit of inspiration.
With all that in mind, my piece of encouragement today is to ditch the meat and two veg for a change and instead make a hearty soup for your next lunch or dinner. Don’t worry if you don’t have home-made stock but if you do, so much the better. Have a salad or something else on the side. Crunchy, salty home-made croutons if you fancy. It’s all up to you. My one tip is don’t over-boil the vegetables as they get watery and flavourless, around 20 minutes is perfect. Here are some of my favourite combinations…
-Roast onion and butternut squash.
-Roast onion, celeriac and parmesan.
-Finely chopped sautéed veg with yellow lentils.
–Gazpacho (cold) made with fresh tomatoes, garlic, cucumber and peppers. Scatter some finely chopped boiled egg, Serrano ham and a splash of olive oil.
–Courgette and almond.
Feel free to post about your favourite soup below!
And Happy Mothers Day to all the mummies. Make sure you get that cup of tea and toast in bed tomorrow.