Roasted tomato, red pepper and red lentil soup

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As the weather gets colder I crave big, wholesome bowls of homemade soup more and more.  This one is simple to make and delicious.

(Serves 4)

  • Punnet of organic tomatoes (stalks removed)
  • 1 large organic red pepper (De-seeded and chopped)
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • Mug of red lentils (rinsed)
  • 1-2 pints of vegetable stock (I use Kallo stock cubes)
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon of fennel seeds
  • 2 teaspoons of dill
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Pop the tomatoes and pepper in the oven with a drizzle of olive oil for about 20 minutes at 180°
  2. Heat some olive oil in a large pan and add the spices and then the lentils, fry for a couple of minutes
  3. Add the tomatoes, pepper, dill and veg stock
  4. Simmer for 5 minutes
  5. Blend (I use a hand-held blender as it’s much easier to wash-up!)
  6. Season to taste and serve with crusty bread

Zucchini and dill soup

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We’ve been inundated with tonnes of fresh, local squash lately and we’ve almost had more than we know what to do with.  I’ve been making soups a lot as the weather has been getting cooler and this is currently one of my favourites…  It literally takes minutes to prepare so it’s a great lunchtime option.

(Serves 4)

  • 4-6 zucchini (washed and roughly chopped)
  • Generous drizzle of olive oil
  • Couple of pints of veg stock (I generally use Kallo organic stock cubes)
  • Generous sprinkle of dill (fresh or dried is fine)
  • Salty and pepper to season
  • Half a lemon
  1. Heat the olive oil up in a pan
  2. Add the zucchini and gently sauté for a few minutes to soften them
  3. Add the vegetable stock
  4. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes
  5. Remove from the heat and blend (I just used a hand-held blender for this, which worked really well and cuts down on washing up!)
  6. Add the dill, salt and pepper to taste
  7. Squeeze in the fresh lemon juice and stir
  8. Serve with warm, crusty bread

Carrot and orange soup

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I love making soups – they’re so simple to do and there are unlimited numbers of combinations of flavours and ingredients.  Also, most soups keep well in the fridge for a few days and make great healthy snacks and lunches or as a starter for a dinner party – simply warm them up when needed.

We’ve been getting huge bunches of carrots (carrot-tops included) over recent weeks in our veg box so I’ve been basing a lot of our meals around them (sorry G!)  Today’s lunch was a very simple carrot and orange soup, which literally took me about twelve minutes from walking through the door to sitting down to eat.  

(Serves 4)

  • Bunch of organic carrots – approximately eight, scrubbed, topped and tailed and roughly chopped
  • 2 organic oranges
  • 2 gloves of garlic – peeled and crushed
  • Drizzle of organic sunflower oil
  • 5 teaspoons or ground coriander
  • 2 pints of vegetable stock (I use Kallo organic stock cubes)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan
  2. Add the ground coriander and garlic together with the carrots
  3. Sauté for about 3 minutes
  4. Grate the zest and the juice of the oranges to the pan (I also often add the remaining peel and flesh for additional flavour and then just remove before blending)
  5. Add the veg stock, bring to the boil and simmer for about 8 minutes to soften the carrots
  6. Blend and return to the heat (I use a hand-held blender most of the time as it’s much quicker and makes far less washing up!)
  7. Season to taste and serve

Zucchini, broad bean and pea soup

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This is my favourite summer soup and I make it really regularly during the warmer months.   Very simple to make with delicious fresh flavours.

(Serves 4)

  • 1-2 zucchini/courgettes – diced
  • 1 onion – chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen broad beans
  • 1/2 a cup frozen peas
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  • Handful of fresh lemon thyme
  • About 1 pint of organic vegetable stock (I use Kallo stock cubes, which are also gluten-free as well as being vegan)
  • Splash of olive oil
  • Juice from one lemon
  • Sea salt and pepper to season
  1. Pour the olive oil into a large saucepan
  2. Add the chopped onion and gently fry for a couple of minutes, to soften
  3. Add the diced zucchini to the pan and gently fry for a few minutes
  4. Add the vegetable stock, peas, broad beans and fresh herbs and cook for a further 3-4 minutes
  5. Remove from the heat and blend (I just use a hand-held blender as I find it easier in a small kitchen plus there’s less washing up!)
  6. Return the soup for he heat, squeeze in the juice of one lemon and season to taste
  7. Serve with fresh, crusty bread

Thai green coconut soup with zucchini noodles, peas, broad beans and pan-fried tofu

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I absolutely love Thai food!  This soup is really really easy to make and I love the colours of the vegetables – really vibrant and fresh.   I always crave this kind of food in the Spring when the weather isn’t quite warm enough for salads but when you want something a little lighter than the carbs and stodgy foods of winter.

(Serves 2)

  • 1-2 zucchini (courgette)
  • Organic extra-virgin coconut oil
  • Half a pack of organic firm tofu (I tend to use either ‘Cauldron’ or ‘Dragonfly’, both available in the UK but there are lots of other brands)
  • Soy sauce, ideally low-sodium
  • 1 inch chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • Large dessert-spoon of Green Thai curry paste (check that it’s vegan – lots of them contain fish)
  • 1 can coconut milk – I used the low-fat version but you can use full-fat if you prefer a creamier taste and texture
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen broad beans
  • Handful of fresh coriander (optional)

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  1. Using a spiralizer; make noodles from the zucchini
  2. Remove any excess water and then slice the tofu into fairly thin slices
  3. Pop a spoonful of the coconut oil into a wok or non-stick pan – warm it through until it melts
  4. Add the ginger and garlic
  5. Place the slices of tofu into the pan, drizzle some soy sauce over them and cook for a few minutes each side until browned before removing from the wok

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  1. Add some more coconut oil to the wok and warm through until it melts
  2. Add the Green Thai curry paste and then stir-fry the zucchini noodles for a couple of minutes
  3. Add the coconut milk and warm through with the peas and broad beans just long enough to ensure all the ingredients are hot (but not too long or the noodles will lose their delicious fresh crispiness)
  4. Serve in a bowl with the tofu and a handful of fresh coriander

Enjoy!!

Mushroom, chestnut and truffle oil soup

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There’s nothing like a big bowl of steaming hot, hearty soup to brighten up a cold winter’s day in the UK and this one definitely hits the spot.   Thanks to our friend Nick who first made it for a group of us one cold November night in the Cotswolds a couple of years ago.

(Serves 4)

  • 1 large onion – chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic – chopped
  • A splash of olive oil
  • Punnet of organic chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • Handful of chestnuts (you can use fresh but I tend to use the ready-prepared ones by Merchant Gourmet)
  • Organic vegetable stock (I use Kallo organic stock cubes)
  • A tiny drizzle of truffle oil (I use the white truffle oil from Truffle Hunter – it’s expensive but it lasts forever as you only need the tiniest amount)
  • Sea salt and pepper to season
  1. Pour the olive oil into a large pan
  2. Add the garlic and onion and gently fry for a few minutes to soften
  3. Add the mushrooms and fry for a few more minutes
  4. Add the vegetable stock, truffle oil and salt and pepper to taste
  5. Heat the mixture through for a couple more minutes and then remove from the heat and blend (I generally use a hand-held blender)
  6. Return the soup to the heat to warm through
  7. Serve with crusty bread

Enjoy.  (Ideally by a roaring log fire with good friends and a bottle of red wine!)