This easy bean soup is just the thing to serve up in a big bowl in the middle of the table for the family to help themselves.
- 2 carrots
- 1 onion
- 1 celery stick
- 1 large potato
- 2 garlic cloves
- Fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon of fennel seed
- Half a teaspoon of chilli flakes
- 1 can chopped tomatoes
- 1 can cannellini beans
- 100g greens (kale, spring greens, spinach)
- A large bread roll
- 25g vegetarian parmesan
- Salt and pepper
HEARTY FOOD MADE WITH LOVE
- Finely chop the carrot, onion and celery.
- Heat a tablespoon of oil in an oven proof pan, add the vegetables and soften for about ten minutes.
- Peel and wash the potato and roughly chop. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Take the leaves from two fresh thyme stalks. Discard the stalk.
- Add the potato, garlic, thyme leaves, fennel seed and chilli to the pan.
- Add the tomatoes, and beans (including the liquid from the can) and a can of water.
- Bring the pot to a simmer and cook until the veg is soft and the sauce reduced down.
- Heat the oven to 220c.
- Tear the bread into bite sized chunks and scatter over the top of the soup.
- Scatter over the cheese.
- Put the pot in the oven and baked until the bread and cheese have turned golden.
- Serve. Delicious with pesto.
It’s that time of the week again when the fridge is starting to look a bit bare and the little pots of leftovers are taking over the middle shelf. A few boiled potatoes here, a cooked chicken breast there, some soup, half a bag of leaves (spinach or similar, NOT leaves from the garden), maybe a bit of cream or a dribble of wine in the bottom the bottle. I often find myself looking blankly at this collection of bits and bobs wondering what the hell I can make out of them to tingle my taste buds.
At the weekend I made a delicious gnocchi (Italian potato dumplings) in a creamy sauce served with watercress and homemade pesto. The gnocci and pesto were long gone but there were some leeks, and marscapone cheese left from the sauce. Combined with a handful of watercress, some garlic leaves, a sliced cooked chicken breast and some new potatoes from last nights dinner they made a very quick, tasty dinner.
Simply slice and sweat the leek for a a few moments to soften (add some water if they look like they are browning, you don’t want them brown) before adding the watercress and garlic leaves. Add a splash of wine if you have some and about a tablespoon of marscapone cheese. Add the sliced chicken and season with salt and pepper. Serve with new potatoes.
For a vegetarian option you could leave out the chicken, add more greens and brocolli, and maybe even a sprinkle of toasted nuts.