Saturday, 17 January 2009

Sweet and Spicy Root Soup - a real winter warmer!

This evening I made a very hearty winter soup and for once, I wrote down the ingredients, so I have the recipe! The idea came from a soup that I bought, but when I went shopping for the ingredients, to make my own, realised I hadn't brought the list, so I did it from memory. The recipe turned out quite different, as I had forgotten quite a few things and added my own. The end result was far tastier than the bought one, and I suspect much more nutritious. The soup was made very thick, but of course could be watered down to suit your taste. I used root vegetables, as they are in season in winter. I try to eat seasonal foods whenever I can, cuts out transport costs, and it kind of makes the seasons a bit different. I definitely prefer soups in the winter. This soup is sweet and spicy, and of course you can adjust the seasoning to taste.

I made it using 2 pots, one to cook the 'base' of the soup, one to cook the 'body'. The idea being I put the 'base' on first, while I prepared the veg for the 'body', then the 'body' cooking overlapped with the 'base' it could be done using one pot, but would need to be done in 2 stages. I used a ready mixed extra spicy Cajun mix, as I'm not too clever at mixing spices, but if you know how, all the better.

The recipe:

For the base -
I vegetable stock cube
4 good size carrots
2 large potatoes
1 medium onion
a knob of vegan 'butter'
ground black pepper to taste

For the 'body'
2 medium potatoes
1 small sweet potato
1 orange pepper
2 medium carrots
1 small turnip
small (or half) swede
1 large parsnip
4 cloves garlic
1 large onion
8 leaves coriander
half lime
half teaspoon extra spicy Cajun mix

Cooking instructions:
For the base-

Peel , chop, the onion, carrots, and potatoes. heat a small amount of water in a large pot, add the stock cube. Add the chopped onion, carrots and potatoes. Bring to the boil, and let it cook, keeping a check that the water does not boil dry, add water as needed, but do not have too much water in the pan at any time. Stir occasionally. After 15 minutes, add the 'butter' and the black pepper. continue to cook until the veg is soft. This should take about another 10/15 mins.

While all this is going on, start preparing the 2nd part, the 'body' of the soup. Peel and chop all the veg, put in large pot and boil, continue cooking for 10 minutes. Add the extra spicy Cajun mix spices, let it simmer, until the veg is cooked, stirring occasionally.

For the 'body'

While this is cooking, the first pot should be ready (the veg is cooked, little water and very soft potatoes starting to break up). Put all of this (including any water left) in a food processor, or blender, whatever kitchen appliance you have. If you don't have any, you could mash it all up to a smooth paste. the idea is to blend it to a smooth paste to add the chunky veg to.

When the 2nd pot of veg is ready, take off the cooker, add the veg you have blended, also add the chopped coriander and squeeze the lime juice into it. Mix it all up, put it back on the stove and heat up until it is just 'bubbling' stir and let it simmer for about 2 or 3 minutes.
then it is done.

You should end up with a tasty sweet and spicy soup, which from preparation start to finish takes about an hour, if you're like me and a slow, cook, who gets a bit distracted now and again. It makes about 4 bowls of soup, which is nice with a piece of bread, and very satisfying.

I really must get a larger cook pot, and freeze some dishes for ready meals another day.


panda with cookie said...

Oh, that looks good and perfect for our cold weather right now.

FireHorse3 said...

This looks delicious!