Showing posts with label Soups. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Soups. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Simple Tomato Soup

Simple tomato soup from

Well Winter has well and truly arrived! I have shivered my way through today and actually haven't felt warm since I got out of bed this morning! My favourite thing about Winter (apart from the clothes - jeans, boots, scarves, jackets - I'm in heaven) is the food. Nothing warms up the house like having a soup simmering on the stove and some bread baking in the oven.

Tonight we had this really simple tomato soup with some focaccia. The simple things really are the best.

I've made this soup a few times and I always wish we had more. Next time I will make a double batch so I can enjoy it for a few days. Mr fussy 4yo had a tiny little taste and declared he didn't like it, but the fact he even tasted it is huge progress. The rest of us loved it, even my 19mth old who loves his focaccia stirred into the soup to get mushy!

Simple Tomato Soup

1/2 brown onion, roughly chopped
3 big cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2tbs extra virgin olive oil
1kg very ripe tomatoes, halved and core removed
1 tbs tomato paste
1tbs rice malt syrup
1 tbs veggie stock paste

Heat up the oil in a medium pot over medium heat, add the onion and garlic and saute for a few minutes or until they start to soften. Add the remainder of the ingredients and cook over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes until the tomatoes completely collapse and the onion is soft. Use a stick blender to blitz until smooth. Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste (I only ever need to add pepper as my homemade stock paste is salty enough).

Serves 4.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Sunshine Soup (aka Carrot, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup)

Sunshine Soup (Carrot, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup) ©

We've been hit with numerous bouts of colds recently and seemingly permanent runny noses so I've been looking for lots of nutrient rich foods to boost the kids immune systems - fresh juices made on carrots, celery, beetroot, spinach, orange and ginger in the morning and warming drinks with lemon and raw honey in the afternoon when the coughs and sniffles come back.

And now that it seems like Winter is finally on the way (we've dropped into single digits overnight in the last few days) it's soup time!!!

I don't tend to follow recipes for soup, I usually just throw in whatever veggies we have on hand, add some herbs and stock and call it a day. This soup, which my boys called Sunshine Soup because of its gorgeous sunny colour, was the perfect tonic for my big boy who was home sick from school yesterday. As usual I thought I made plenty but it disappeared in record time and I will be making another batch today!

I did this in the Thermomix but you can easily adapt it and I have included alternative directions below.

We all loved this soup. My 18 month old ate more than 1 1/2 cups and wanted more but there wasn't any left!

Sunshine Soup (Carrot, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato)

2 large carrots, roughly chopped
1 large sweet potato, roughly chopped
1 big wedge of pumpkin, roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic
2cm piece ginger
2cm piece fresh turmeric OR 1ts dried turmeric
2 1/2 cups water or stock
1 ts vegetable stock paste (only if using water)
1 heaped tbs solid coconut oil
sea salt and pepper to taste

TMX - place the ginger, garlic and fresh turmeric (if using) into the bowl and chop 3 secs / SP 7. Add the coconut oil and dried turmeric (if using) and saute 2 mins / Varoma / SP 1. Add the carrot, sweet potato and chop 15 secs / SP 7. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the stock or water and cook 20 mins / 100 degrees / SP 1. Blend 45 secs / sp8, gradually increasing from SP 1 to SP 8. Add sea salt and pepper to taste.

If not using a Thermomix, place all ingredients except the water/stock and oil into a food processor and process until finely chopped. Pour into a medium saucepan, add the oil and water or stock. Bring to the boil then simmer for 20 minutes or until veggies are tender. Using a stick blender, process the soup until smooth.

Serves 4.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Chicken and Drop Dumplings (SRC)

Chicken and Drop Dumplings ©

Yay Secret Recipe Club time again! If you're new here, each month SRC members are assigned a blog at random where they get to choose a recipe to make, keep it a secret and then all post on the same day. This month I was excited to be given Angel's Homestead by April who happens to be the fearless leader of SRC!

I really enjoyed taking the time to read through April's blog which is full of simple, easy to make and delicious recipes. I love her philosophy of frugal and sustainable living and this is really reflected in the food she makes for her family.

I don't have time for complicated meals at the moment. Life with 2 little kids is busy and in a couple of months, will be getting a lot busier with the arrival of #3! We're due at the end of October so only about 9 weeks to go.

Anyway, on to this month's recipe! Chicken and Dumplings...

I've made dumplings quite a few times, usually with a slow cooked beef casserole. They are such a great alternative to rice or pasta and so easy to whip up. My husband in particular is a big fan and really enjoyed these ones.

We've been having unseasonably warm weather for August so I was lucky that the day I had set aside to make this for dinner was cold and windy and just perfect for a warming and hearty dish like this.

April has several chicken and dumplings recipes on her blog so I decided to choose the simplest one and make a couple of changes of my own.

First I never use stock cubes because I am yet to find a good one without MSG and other yucky ingredients. So to boost the chicken flavour I browned the meat first and added some vegies to the broth while the chicken cooked. I also added some carrots and peas to the final dish for colour and because I can't help myself! I also used wholemeal flour because that's what I bake with most often.

Chicken and Drop Dumplings
Adapted from Angel's Homestead

4 chicken marylands (leg & thigh quarters)
1 litre chicken stock
2 cups water
1 medium onion, quartered
2 cloves garlic, peeled but whole
1 carrot, roughly chopped
1 stick celery, roughly chopped
3 carrots, extra (sliced thinly)
1 cup frozen peas

For the dumplings:
2 cups wholemeal self-raising flour (or plain flour with 1 tbs baking powder sifted through)
1/2 tsp salt
50g butter
1 cup of milk

To make the broth, heat up a large pot over medium high heat and sear the chicken pieces, skin side down, until golden brown. Remove the pieces and any excess oil. Throw in the onion, garlic, carrot and celery and fry for a few minutes. Return the chicken to the pot and pour in the stock and water (the chicken should be completely covered). Reduce heat to medium, put the lid on and allow to simmer for around 40 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the meat is pulling away from the bones.

Remove the chicken pieces then strain the broth through a fine metal strainer, discarding the vegies.

Shred the chicken meat and return to the pot along with the sliced carrots, frozen peas and strained broth and place over medium-low heat. Check for seasoning and add salt if needed.

To make the dumplings, mix together the flour and salt in a large bowl and set aside. Place the milk and butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Once melted, pour the milk and butter over the flour and mix until just combined. Drop the dumplings into the pot, a tablespoon at a time until all the mixture is used. Cover and let simmer for about 15 minutes.

We all really enjoyed this, such a hearty and savoury meal for a cold day. Normally when I make chicken stock or soup I make it ahead of time so I can remove some of the fat. I didn't do that this time so there was quite a bit as you can see in the photo but I love that. It was a delicious dinner and one we'll be making again for sure.

Secret Recipe Club

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Roasted Pumpkin and Apple Soup

Roasted Pumpkin and Apple Soup ©

Winter has well and truly arrived this week. While we're still getting glorious sunny days, the nights and early mornings are absolutely freezing. We have so far avoided having heaters on but a few more days like this and that will change!

In our house cold weather is soup weather. I love the fact that both my boys love soup, especially my 4 year old. If you haven't tried soup with your kids yet it's really worth a go, just be prepared for some mess!

We've had pumpkin soup a few times recently and I've always stuck to my tried and true recipe which includes garlic, ginger and coriander. This time I thought I would make something a little lighter and sweeter, so decided to not only include some apple but also to roast all the ingredients first, something that really brings out the natural sweetness.

The taste test ...

Pumpkin and apple really are a match made in heaven! My kids absolutely devoured this for lunch. Both had seconds. You'll notice from the photo how thick this soup is. Not only does it make quite a hearty meal it also makes it easier for little kids to handle.This was a winner and will be added to our regular rotation.

Roasted Pumpkin and Apple Soup

1/4 large pumpkin (I like jap or kent for soup, my piece was 1.6kg)
2 small green apples
1 potato
1 large onion
1/4 ts cinnamon
1/4 ts cumin
3-4 cups stock (chicken or vege work well)
1 tbs olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 190 degrees C / 170 degrees fan-forced.

Chop up the pumpkin into thick slices, removing the seeds but leaving the skin on. Wash and core the apples, leaving them whole with the skin intact. Wash the potato and chop into quarters, leaving the skin on. Top and tail the onion and remove the skin.

Place all veggies into a large baking dish. Sprinkle over the spices, drizzle on the oil and toss to combine.

Place in the oven and roast for 45 -60 minutes or until all the vegetables are soft, golden and cooked through. Keep an eye on the apples and onion as they will be done before the potatoes and take them out if they are getting too brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before scooping out the flesh of the apples and veggies into a food processor or blender. Leave any hard or overcooked edges and all the skin behind.

Blitz until well combined. Add the stock and blitz for 2 minutes or until completely smooth (if you want a thinner soup just add more stock now). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the soup into a large saucepan and simmer gently until warmed through. Serve with hot buttered bread rolls.

Serves 4.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Minestrone Soup

We've been having gorgeous Autumn weather lately with cool nights and lovely warm sunny days. This is the perfect time of year for soup and really is there anything more comforting than a big bowl of steaming hot soup served with crusty bread on a cold night? Unfortunately hubby does not share my enthusiasm. Oh well, more for me and the kids!

This is my version of a minestrone soup. You can use absolutely any vegetables you like or happen to have on hand. The more the better. Add some beef stock, kidney beans and tomatoes and you have a hearty and warming winter meal. You can of course easily use vegetable stock for a vegetarian version that is just as yummy.

My Minestrone Soup

2 onions
2 medium carrots
2 stalks celery
2 medium potatoes
2 corn cobs, kernels removed
1 large zucchini
1 parsnip
1 swede
1 large wedge of pumpkin
1 bunch asparagus
1 tin diced tomatoes
1 tin red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 tbs Gourmet Garden Chunky Garlic Paste
1 tbs Gourmet Garden Basil Paste
2 ts Gourmet Garden Thyme Paste
2 bay leaves
1 - 1/2 litres beef stock
2 tbs oil

Dice all the fresh vegetables to roughly the same size and set aside. Heat the oil in a very large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add all your vegetables at once and stir to coat in the oil. Cook for about 5 minutes. 

Add the tomatoes, beans, herbs and enough stock to cover the veges. Cover the pot and bring to the boil. Spoon off the froth/scum that has risen to the surface then reduce the heat to low and simmer gently for an hour or so, or until the vegetables are cooked through. 

Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaves. Serve with crusty bread and some grated Parmesan cheese.

To make it more kid friendly, simply puree the soup and serve with grated cheese and lots of hot buttered toast.

Enjoy! This makes enough to feed an army so be prepared to freeze it in smaller batches to pull out later for an easy dinner.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Meatless Monday - Easy Pumpkin Soup

We've had some lovely cool nights and mornings and to me that signals the beginning of soup weather. However my husband hates both pumpkin AND soup so it's no surprise the boys and I had this for lunch instead of dinner!

This is just about the easiest soup you could possibly make. Just chop, throw it all in a pot for a while then blend and eat. Yum!

Easy Pumpkin Soup
Serves 4

1/2 onion
2 cloves garlic
20g butter (or coconut oil for dairy free)
800g pumpkin (peeled weight), roughly chopped into 3cm pieces
approx 1 litre water or vegetable stock
salt, pepper and freshly grated nutmeg to taste
cream (or coconut cream) to serve

Place a large saucepan over a medium heat and the butter. Roughly chop the onion and garlic and add to the pan when the butter has melted and is starting to foam. Cook for a few minutes until the onion has softened. Add the chopped pumpkin and toss to combine. Add enough water or vegetable stock to cover the pumpkin, place the lid on the pan and bring to the boil.

Once boiling remove the lid and reduce the heat down to a simmer. Cook uncovered for 15-20 minutes until the pumpkin is soft and cooked through. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste. Add a splash of cream.

You can blend the soup using either a stick blender in the saucepan (off the heat) or by pouring the soup into a food processor.

Serve with another swirl of cream, a grating of fresh nutmeg and lots of crusty, buttered bread. Delicious!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Chicken Noodle Soup

It's official. Oscar has his first cold. I think he's done really well to get to 9 months without picking up any bugs, particularly as both hubby and I had the flu a few months ago.

Despite it being the middle of a hot summer, chicken noodle soup was definitely in order. While Oscar only got a little of the broth and some finely chopped chicken, the rest of us got the whole deal including noodles made from scratch.

Chicken Noodle Soup

For the broth:

1 x 2kg chicken, preferably organic
1 carrot,
1 stick of celery
2 cloves of garlic
1 red onion
2 bay leaves

Rinse the chicken under cold water and place in a large stock pot.Chop the onion, carrot and celery into large chunks. Add to the pot with the garlic and bay leaves. Cover with cold water and place over high heat. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 1 hour, skimming any scum that comes to the surface.

Remove the chicken from the broth and refrigerate. Remove and discard the vegetables and bay leaves (you may need to strain the broth to remove the onion and any sediment). Pour the broth into a large jug and refrigerate for at least a few hours. Once cold, remove most of the fat that has risen to the surface and discard. If you don't do this the soup may be too oily.

Once the chicken is cool, remove the meat from the bones and shred or chop it into pieces. Refrigerate until needed.

For the noodles:
Recipe adapted from Romaine's Chicken and Dumplings

1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 egg beaten
1 tbs butter
1/2 ts salt
5 tbs cold water

Add the flour, salt and butter to the bowl of your food processor and blitz until the mixture resembles course sand. Add the egg and pulse a few times to combine. Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing in between additions, until the mixture starts to form a ball.

Remove from the mixer, cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.

Flour a large board or work surface and roll out the dough into a thin sheet (basically as thin or thick as you would like the noodles to be). Use a sharp knife to cut into the desired shape. I cut long ribbons about 1/2 inch wide, then cut each ribbon into 4 inch strips.

Cover with a tea towel and allow to dry for 20 minutes.

For the soup:

1 large carrot, finely diced
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 zuchini, finely diced
salt and pepper to taste
Your cooked chicken and cooled broth

Pour the cooled broth into a large saucepan and bring it to the boil. Check for seasoning at this stage and add salt and pepper to taste. Once boiling, add the vegetables and noodles and cook for about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Add the chicken and stir through until hot.

Serves 6.

It doesn't matter how hot the weather is, there is just something so comforting about chicken noodle soup, and the homemade noodles really made this dish something special!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

French Onion Soup

I'm becoming a soup-aholic! I could happily eat it every night of the week but I think the other members of this household might have a problem with that!

Apart from the fact that I love anything and everything French, to me this soup is pure comfort food. It's dark, rich and warming and served with cheese ... what could be better? :)

French Onion Soup
Recipe from

80g butter
4 large brown onions, sliced crossways into rings (I used 5 onions)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp plain flour (I used 3 tsp)
1.5L (6 cups) beef stock
125ml (1/2 cup) dry red wine (I left this out and used all beef stock)
1 bouquet garni sachet
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 x 30cm baguette (French stick), cut crossways into 12 slices (I used the remnants of a ciabatta from the freezer which toasted up beautifully)
55g (1 cup) finely shredded gruyere cheese

Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until the onions are soft and light golden. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until flour bubbles and comes away from the side of the pan. Add the stock, wine and bouquet garni and bring to the boil

Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes or until soup thickens slightly. Remove bouquet garni. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Preheat grill on high. Place baguette slices on a baking tray. Place under preheated grill and cook for 2 minutes each side or until light golden. Remove from grill and sprinkle each slice evenly with the cheese. Place under grill and cook for a further 2 minutes or until the cheese melts.

To serve, ladle soup into serving bowls and top with the bread.

Serves 4-6.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Kumara, Chilli and Coriander Soup

This is one recipe I should have blogged about immediately ... because now I've had it for 2 meals and i'm sick of it! It was delicious though and the colour is amazing. What's also amazing is that i've managed to get my husband to eat soup twice in a couple of weeks!

Kumara, Chilli and Coriander Soup
Recipe from Simple Meals by the Australian Women's Weekly Cookbooks, 2002, p12

100g fresh coriander, roots attached
1 tbs olive oil
1 onion, chopped roughly
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 1/2 tbs sambal oelek (asian chilli paste)
1.2kg kumara, chopped roughly
1 litre chicken stock
2 cups water
2/3 cup coconut milk

Wash and dry the coriander. Finely chop enough of the roots to make 2 teaspoons and enough leaves to make a loosely packed 1/4 cup (this is what the recipe said, I just did the whole bunch because I love coriander!).

Heat the oil in a large pot then add the onion, garlic, coriander and sambal oelek. Cook for a few minutes until the onion softens.

Add the kumara and toss to combine with other ingredients. Cover with the stock and water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 20 minutes or until the kumara is soft.

Using a stab mixer, blend the soup in the pot or transfer to a food processor in batches. Simmer again for a few minutes until the soup thickens slightly then add the coconut milk and stir through.

Divide into serving bowls and top with a drizzle of coconut milk and scattering of coriander leaves.

Serves 4-6.

You won't need bread with this soup as it is incredibly hearty and perfect for this time of year.

PS. Because I am a weather nut (sad but true) I can tell you that Brisbane had its coldest morning of the year today - just 3.3 deg C. Lovely!

Monday, July 21, 2008

10 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup

This doesn't really qualify as a recipe, more of a 'meal idea'. Basically it's a 10 minute soup perfect for a cold winter's night. You can put in just about anything you like but always remember to taste the broth to make sure the flavours are balanced.

10 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup

2 L chicken stock (if not making it yourself, use a salt-reduced one)
1 pack soba noodles
500g chicken fillets (I use tenderloins - no cutting required!)
1-2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 thumb size piece of ginger, sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced finely
1 bunch asparagus, woody ends removed and sliced on diagonal
1 tbs tamari (or other soy sauce)
a few drops of sesame oil
1 small red chili, chopped finely
1 bunch fresh coriander

Cook the soba as per directions and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large pot place the chicken stock, garlic, ginger, onion and chili. Bring to the boil then reduce heat to medium. Add the tamari and sesame oil and stir to combine.

Add the chicken pieces and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the asparagus and any other veges you like and simmer until both chicken and vegetables are cooked through (a couple of minutes max).

Refresh the noodles in hot water then drain and divide into serving bowls. Top each serve with a few chicken pieces and some vegetables. Ladle over the broth. Top with freshly chopped coriander.


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