A Soup To Beat Off The Chills

Hands in the middle who doesn’t love soup?

For me, nothing quite beats a pan of hearty soup when the cold winter starts to bite.

Hot. Filling. Nourishing. And quick if you’ve already made a large batch and it only needs re-heating. Coming in from the cold, that first spoonful can send a warm glow from a rumbling stomach, right up till it reaches a pair of rosy cheeks… HEAVEN.

Such is the joy of a humble bowl of soup, and suddenly, all is well with the world.

Of course, apart from frequent soup cravings, it’s appeal for me lies in its versatility. Brunch, lunch, starter, appetizer, canapé or, if robust enough, it can take centre stage at meal times when enjoyed with a chunk or two of toasted sourdough ~ as in a one pot ghoulash type concoction I like to make every so often.
But one of my absolute favourites is the one here for which there is no real recipe ~ or if there is, it is simply this

“Seasonal vegetables


good stock”

Combine all of the above in a large pot with your own choice of herbs and spices and you’re on course to make a soup that’s not only delicious but healthy and nutritious too. Here, I used a variety of root vegetables already to hand : carrots; parsnips and turnip ~ peeled and diced into chunks, which I added to a pan of onions and leeks, softened well in some olive oil and a generous knob of butter.

Cover with plenty of stock then bring the whole shebang to the boil before putting on a gentle simmer till the vegetables are cooked but still firm. Once cooled a little, I like to transfer ladlefuls of the mixture carefully to a liquidizer, blending everything until it’s very smooth, my own personal preference, although a little chunky is good too.

Consistency is totally a matter of taste. Beautifully thick and silky or made a little thinner with more stock or a couple of glugs of milk or cream at the end, and if you’ve a mind to, go fancy for a special dinner or supper with friends ~ and serve it as a canapé, in the form of a cheeky soup shot ~ I frequently serve these at my supper clubs and they’re the BOMB.

A wee snippet on stock.

When I was growing up as a child alongside my 8 brothers and sisters, my Irish father would boil a ham each week, all eleven of us sitting around the huge kitchen table to share a traditional Irish dinner of the aforementioned joint of meat, cabbage and buttery mashed potatoes. Such happy times, family times ~ and made even happier with the great pot of ham stock left at the end!

For me, altho’ ham stock is just the best stock ever, it’s something I don’t make very often so my own homemade stock is usually made using a chicken carcass or two which yields the most wonderful thick jelly, full of flavour. But when I’ve none of this, I use those fab little pots of jellied stock ~ absolute lifesavers!

Re toppings, no matter how delicious, many soups benefit from a tasty sprinkling on top, of something which complements ~ adding just that extra little bit of zing and texture to complete the whole experience ~ and for this veggie soup, the roasted cherry tomatoes and the spike of chilli oil did just that. Speaking of toppings, I’m wondering if I’ve just stumbled across the follow on post after this!

Thanks for passing by and taking the time to share in one of Madge’s Musings.
Hope to see you again, Mary (aka Madge) 🙋‍♀️

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