Today I have decided is definitely a curl up inside in the warm with a hearty bowl of home-made soup and a hunk of bread kind of a day. Had to get a new coat and a scarf to manage getting around outside this week so finally time to say goodbye to summer salads and say hello to hot hearty home cooked food like granny used to make.
Also a bit of a handy fridge clear out going on if I’m honest because tomorrow morning we are getting our top up of fresh fruit and vegetables from our local organic fruit farm’s handy-dandy vegetable box delivery scheme (I’m sure one of us will blog about its awesomeness and how it works out being surprisingly economical).
So here goes, I wouldn’t necessarily go to the shops to seek out these exact ingredients, they are just what was floating around in the vegetable drawer, but maybe just be inspired to join in the warm fall food fun (isn’t alliteration fun :D).
Parsnip and Pumpkin Soup
2 large parsnips peeled and roughly diced
1/2 small pumpkin also peeled (obv :P) and roughly diced
1/2 leek finely sliced
1 1/2 pints good chicken/vegetable stock (or just a diluted stock cube… I’m not judging you)
200 g thick diced bacon
Pinch of chilli flakes
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. Prep – A wee bit of vegetable prep at the outset, much peeling and chopping. This is about all the work you’ll have to do so not all bad. Meanwhile put a large saucepan, or your granny’s old slightly broken pressure cooker over a medium heat.
2. Put everything in the pan – Add the bacon and cook until the fat renders out and goes deliciously golden. Remove the bacon and set aside for the end (Sam has issues with bacon going a bit flabby in things, so it will become an attractive if not a little unnecessary garnish at the end). Drain out any excess oil. Add the leek and begin to soften, once broken down add the diced parsnip and pumpkin, stirring continuously to pull up all the good bacony goodness from the pan. Add the stock, bring to the boil then lower the heat, leaving the soup to simmer for about 25 mins.
3 Whizz – Check that the vegetables have gone nice and soft, depending on how fine your dice, they may take a little longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat and blend either in a liquidiser or with a stick blender depending on your weapon of choice. Be careful as whizzing hot liquids can be a little bit precarious!
4. Serve – Finally stir in a pinch of chilli flakes to give the soup a nice warming kick, add the reserved bacon as a tasty meaty garnish for those of you who need meat in a meal and you are all set. A hunk of good bread on the side goes down a treat.