This is a tale of two soups and a meal.
Last year Daughter No 1 lost around 10 pounds with hard work ( read ‘committed exercise program’) and sensible eating. But both are rather difficult to sustain when your workday involves an hour’s commute each way and ends with a demanding toddler at the end. It was no wonder then that she was slowly climbing up the scale. But while she was lax about the exercise, she was quite particular about her calorie intake.
So she made a trip to a nutritionist who prescribed a sensible diet, one that is not too difficult to follow in a household that has three different diets for 6 people.
Soup is one of my favourite foods. Even on a hot summer day, I love unwinding with a bowl of hearty soup and slices of thick buttered toast. And on Winter days or wet monsoon days, I always make a soupy meal when I am alone.
Yesterday’s dinner consisted of two soups. The first one was vegetarian and needed 5 bell peppers. When I saw Damyanti’s post on peppers, I wished I could pluck them off the screen as that would have definitely saved me a trip to the bazaar. Alas! Luscious as they were, I could only gaze at them and wish they were growing in my balcony.
But here goes the recipe for the first soup which is full of nutrients and goodness.
Red Bell Pepper Soup
You will need
- 5 Red Bell Peppers
- 2 tbspn Olive Oil
- ½ large yellow finely chopped onion
- ( I used the regular red Bombay Onion)
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 tbspn flour
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- fistful of parsley
- 1 ½ cup Almond milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
How to make it :
- Roast the bell peppers in a pan in a hot oven till the skin is charred and comes off easily. This takes round about 10 minutes.
- In the meanwhile chop the onions and mince the garlic.
- When the bell peppers are done, remove from the oven and allow to cool. Then peel off the skin and remove the seeds and stem. Coarsely chop and keep aside.
- In a deep pan, heat the olive oil and add the garlic and onions and sauté till the aroma of garlic is released. Don’t allow the onions to brown.
- Add the flour and sauté till the flour becomes slightly pink. Add the chopped peppers, lowering the heat and stirring all the time. Gradually add the vegetable stock and the parsley allow to simmer.
- Take off heat and allow it to cool before blending. Then add the almond milk and heat before serving.
This soup, you will notice is Vegan but you can always use regular milk or real cream if you are not counting calories. It will naturally make the soup taste richer!
The original recipe asks for 2 tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar which, when I added the first time I made it, made my teeth stand on edge. So I gave it a skip this time.
A word of caution: This number of peppers makes a humungous quantity and easily feeds 6! So yesterday I took only 2 peppers and adjusted the rest of the ingredients accordingly.
And it didn’t make a difference to the taste.
The second soup is one after my heart because I am a sucker for a slurpy, wholesome broth.
Hearty Chicken & Vegetable Broth
To make this chicken vegetable broth, you will need :
- 200 g of boneless chicken finely diced into cubes
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 Tbspn Olive oil + 1 Tbspn butter
- ¾ cup finely chopped onion
- 4 cloves of minced garlic
- 1 leek chopped finely
- 2 thick sticks of celery minced
- 1 tspn of fresh or dried thyme
- 1 fistful of finely chopped parsley
- ½ cup grated pumpkin
- ½ cup grated carrot
- 1 handful of sweet corn
- 1 cup of water
What you have to do :
- Heat the oil and butter in a deep pan and add the onion, garlic, leek, celery, parsley, and thyme and sauté for around 2-3 minutes till the onions and leek are soft to the touch.
- Add in the chicken and stir till the chicken turns opaque.
- Add the rest of the vegetables and keep sautéing for another 3 minutes.
- Add the chicken stock and a cup of water and allow to simmer.
The weekend is just around the corner. While I look forward to the change from the daily routine, I know that come Sunday and I will be too tired to even think of cooking a meal.
At times like this, I wish I could just give the family soup for a meal rather than the whole caboodle.
What do you think?
Do let me know if you like to end your weekend with a soup in the comments below.
Food is one of my passions and I had started #FlavoursomeTuesdays , a blog hop that flopped.But I still miss writing about food and sharing recipes, so I thought of starting a new initiative called #ThursdayPotLuck.If you have a recipe or foodie anecdote to share, do ping me so that I can visit your post!