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Mushroom soup

24 Feb

Serves 4

About 500g mushrooms – mixed or all of one type
35g butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 leek, sliced
1 small potato, peeled and diced
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped  Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 litre vegetable or chicken stock
100ml double cream
1 tbsp chopped parsley

Melt the butter in a pan with the olive oil, then add the garlic, onion, leek, and potato. Sweat the vegetables for a few minutes.
Clean and chop the less-attractive mushrooms, then add to the vegetable base to cook through.
Pour in enough vegetable stock to cover the ingredients. Simmer for 10 minutes.

Using a ladle, transfer the soup to a blender. Blend the soup to a smooth creamy consistency. Pour the soup into a new pan and re-heat.
Next, roughly chop the A-list garnish mushrooms and simply sauté in more butter and olive oil, with plenty of salt and pepper, until brown.

Season the soup with salt and pepper and add a good glug of cream.
The soup is now ready to serve. Pour into bowls and garnish with the sautéed mushrooms.




Chunky puy lentil & vegetable soup

21 Feb

Serves 4

50G butter
2 medium carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2 leeks, white part only, thinly sliced
1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
2 tsp dried oregano
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
200g Puy lentils 
1 litre vegetable stock
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Melt the butter in a large heavy bottomed saucepan. Add the carrots, leeks, onion and garlic, stirring to coat with the butter. Add a healthy pinch of salt,cover and allow to cook for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are softened, stirring occasionally.

Add the chilli flakes, oregano, lentils and stock. Cover and allow to simmer for about 30 minutes or so, until the lentils are cooked. Taste and adjust seasoning if required.Ladle into heated bowls.



Red lentil,red pepper and coconut soup

13 Feb

The flavours in this soup are well balanced and the red lentils should be a household stable as they ate inexpensive and really east to cook .

Serves 4

1 onion, finely chopped
2 celery stalks,finely chopped
1 red chilli,deseeded & finely chopped
2cm fresh ginger,grated
1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 red peppers,deseeded & diced
100g red lentils
400ml tin coconut milk
400ml vegetable stock
Salt & pepper
Toasted desiccated coconut to serve

Heat some oil in a large pan,add the onion and celery.saute for 5 minutes then add the chillies,ginger and cumin,cook for a further 2 minutes.

Add the peppers,lentils,coconut milk and stock.continue to cook for a further 10th minutes until the peppers are soft.
Puree the soup in a blender until its a smooth consistency.

Sprinkele over the toasted coconut when serving .



Five-root soup with bacon

28 Jan

Serves 4-6

1 tbsp olive oil
100g Unsmoked streaky bacon or pancetta, cut into small dice
1 Large onion, finely chopped
150g Carrots, cut into small dice
150g Swede, cut into small dice
150g potatoes, peeled and cut into small dice
150g Parsnip, cut into small dice
150g Celeriac, cut into small dice
1 litre chicken stock
Salt and pepper

To serve
Chives, snipped,
100g Mature cheddar cheese, grated

Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the bacon and cook gently until the fat runs and the bacon starts to turn golden. Add the onion and sweat for 10–15 minutes, until soft and golden. Add all the diced root vegetables, cover the pan and let the whole mixture sweat and soften for 10 minutes or so, stirring occasionally.

Pour in the stock and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 15 minutes, until all the vegetables are tender.

To serve, scatter over a few chives and a sprinkling or cheese