Tag Archives: soup

Pea and Mint soup

From the 19th Century I have taken a split pea soup (sometimes called a London Peculiar as it was named after the smog “peculiar” to London) and from the 20th century I have taken a fresh pea and mint soup. Blend them together and we have created a 21st century soup complete with a garnish of petit pois. How lucky are you my little time travellers.

Ingredients

300g Green Split peas

300g Frozen peas (reserve a handful for garnish)

1 stick celery diced

1 Carrot diced

1 Leek sliced

1Onion diced

1.2l Vegetable stock

Bay leaf

½ tsp Cumin

1 tbsp Fresh mint

1 tsp Mint sauce

25g Butter

Directions

Soak the split peas for at least 4hrs – this makes them quicker to cook. In a large pan melt the butter and add the celery, onions, leeks and carrots sauté until soft add the cumin split peas bay leaf and vegetable stock bring to the boil and simmer for about 40 minutes until the green split peas have begun to break down. Add the frozen peas, remove the bay leaf and blend. Add the chopped fresh mint and the mint sauce check for seasoning, decorate with a few reserved whole peas.

Health benefits

Peas are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, thiamine (vitamin B1), iron and phosphorus. They are rich in protein, carbohydrate and fibre, and low in fat. Peas may help prevent certain types of cancer: for example, in one study they were linked to lower rates of prostate cancer. They are good for the heart because they are a rich source of soluble fibre, which enables the body to reduce its blood cholesterol level. They may also protect against appendicitis.

Mint contains a number of vitamins and minerals, which are vital to maintain a healthy body. Mint is rich in Vitamins A and C and also contains smaller amounts of Vitamin B2. Vitamin C is an important antioxidant and may help to decrease the risk of certain cancers such as colon and rectal cancer. Although mint may be consumed in small quantities, the vital nutrients obtained are still beneficial to one’s health.

Mint also contains a wide range of essential minerals such as manganese, copper, iron, potassium and calcium

. Did You know…

Garden peas were an absolute craze in the Royal French Court in the seventeenth century. They were eaten like a delicious sin (bit like we eat chocolate).
Madame de Maintenon, mistress of Louis XIV wrote in 1669: “There are ladies who, after having dined, and dined well, eat garden peas in their own quarters before going to bed.”

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Pirate soup

This soup is hot, so I hope you can all cope you bunch of landlubbers. Ever dreamed of being a pirate, sailing round the Caribbean sitting in a hammock under a blue sky sun beating down on you all around you can hear the crying of macaws ahh lovely . This soup has all the elements from roasted red peppers for warmth, sweet potatoes for silky velvety texture, roasted chilli for a fiery kick, coconuts to calm it down and lime to add a bit of zing. I want to hear tales of you behaving like a pirate and drinking rum after you have eaten this soup.

Ingredients

Vegetable stock

4 sweet potato,

3 red pepper

tin coconut milk

fresh chilli,

onion

lime

fresh coriander

Directions

Roast the peppers and chilli until blackened. Heat a little oil in a pan and add onion and sweet potatoes cook for 15 mins . Peel and deseed the chilli and peppers and add to the vegetables . Add the coconut milk and 500ml of vegetable stock , cook for ten minutes. Garnish with fresh coriander and lime juice

Health benefits

Chilli contains natural pain relief, it lowers cholesterol and clears congestion by stimulating secretions that help clear mucus from your stuffed up nose or congested lungs. (which is why you should have a curry if you have a cold) In addition Chilli peppers’ bright red colour signals its high content of beta-carotene or pro-vitamin A. The anti-infection vitamin A is essential for healthy mucous membranes, which line the nasal passages, lungs, intestinal tract and urinary tract and serve as the body’s first line of defence against invading pathogens. And finally chillies help you lose weight – All that heat you feel after eating hot chilli peppers takes energy–and calories to produce. Even sweet red peppers have been found to contain substances that significantly increase thermogenesis (heat production) and oxygen consumption for more than 20 minutes after they are eaten.

Sweet Potatoes are orange which means they contain beta carotene or pro-vitamin A which as I have just said is the anti infection vitamin so no more colds or flu.

Did You know…Pirate joke

Q – What does a pirate take for indigestion?

A – Yo ho ho and a bottle of Tums!

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Carrot and Cardamom soup

Inspired by the cooking of southern India. Carrots are gently infused with cardamom and fresh curry leaves. It is a fragrant soup and quite delicate in taste – Enjoy

Ingredients

Onion diced

1 kg carrots diced

1 stick of celery

25g butter

4 green cardamom pods

4 stalks of curry leaves fresh

2 litres of stock

Olive oil

Directions

Melt butter and oil in a pan and add carrots onion and celery, sweat for 15 mins with the lid on until all is soft and fragrant. Heat the cardamom pods in a dry frying pan for two mins. Split the pods open and add the seeds to the carrots with the stock and the curry leaves. Simmer for 30 minutes and blend until smooth. Just prior to serving add a knob of butter and season to taste.

Health benefits

Cardamom is a fantastic ingredient as it helps detoxify the body of all that caffeine you drink to keep you stimulated. It is also a key ingredient in love potions so watch out who you look at whilst eating your soup or you might fall in love with them!

Carrots are incredibly rich in vitamin A which is important in maintaining healthy skin and helps the body to resist infection – no more days off sick

Did You know…

The French court of Louis XI subsisted mainly on soup because they believed that chewing would cause them to develop facial wrinkles

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Tomato, lentil and caraway soup

Born from the Kasbahs of Turkey. Smokey, mysterious and beautiful with the ability to take your breath away.

Recipe

2 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove chopped
1 green pepper diced
1 onion diced
1 dried red chilli
1 tsp caraway seeds
500g passata
tin of plum tomatoes
salt and pepper
500cl vegetable stock

 

Directions
Heat the oil and add the chopped garlic, the caraway seeds and crumble the dried chilli, heat till fragrant.  Add the onion and green pepper and cook for 10 mins or until till soft .  Add the tin of tomatoes and the lentils stir for 2 mins.  Add the passata and the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil and simmer gently for 40 mins. To serve, you could add some grated cheese or/and some finely chopped fresh parsley

Health benefits
Lentils are so good for keeping you full for a long time as well as cleaning out your insides with all that fibre.

Canned tomatoes contain lycopene. Lycopene is an antioxidant and has cancer-preventing properties, these cancers now include colorectal, prostate, breast, endometrial, lung, and pancreatic cancers. Prevention of heart disease has been shown to be another antioxidant role played by lycopene.

Did You know…
In one of the short stories in Dubliners by James Joyce, a character eats caraway seeds to mask the alcohol on his breath.

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Soup Journey

How did this happen?
One day I was busy running a digital and design team, the next thing I know I am writing about soup.
 
It started with me giving my job up. I was searching for inspiration and creativity. I felt I needed to start a new journey, and I needed nourishment. After the initial buzz of freedom, I began to look at what I should do, nothing seemed to interest me.  As I had more time, I began a pottery course hoping it would keep me busy whilst waiting for inspiration to strike, but no inspiration struck. I also began to dedicate more time to my first passion cooking.

I decided to start make fresh soup, for my husband, for lunch. I knew how hard it was to eat healthy food at work and how dull sandwiches can get.  Always spotting an opportunity, our friend Ally asked if I could make her soup too.  All three of us ate soup every day for lunch and were amazed as we started to lose weight, feel healthier, and enjoyed the variety of a different lunch every day. Before I knew it word got out and everyone wanted some of my magic soup and I found myself making large vats of soup every day.

So I would like to thank all my Soupies who have tried, tested, commented on and refined these soups. Big kisses to Paul, Xtine and Ally, and much love to Alex Heaton, Karen Lewis, Karen Boswell, Ian Rossin, Christine Osborne, James Wheatley, Harriet Hughes-Payne, Caroline Skipsey, John Morgan, Angela Friscuolo, Lynn Haynes, Helen Collier, Charlotte Moody, Leah Kayles, Claire Robinson, Leanne Elgy, Jodie Richmond, Andrew Brown, Julie Hanson, Ruth Holgate,  Claire Thackray, Anne Kelly, Gaby Ferry and everyone else who has given me such lovely feedback and encouragement.

All the photos, recipes and some of the pottery featured in this blog were created by me (so the pottery is coming in handy).   I hope you enjoy this blog as much as I enjoy creating it. I never thought I would be doing this! Not sure if this is my new journey but it is a great experience.

Finally three top tips:
1) Get yourself a stick, hand blender. There is nothing more annoying than forever pouring boiling soup from pan to jug to pan    – nightmare. Instead buy a good hand blender and stick it straight into the pan, see how easy is that.
2) Cheat and use Marigold vegetable stock. It is natural, tasty and very easy.
3) The soups all feed four hungry people, or six not so hungry.

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