Monday, 28 October 2013

....and make soup.


Happy Monday everyone! 
Sorry I haven't posted for a while....things have been rather busy around here.  My husband took a week off work last week, so that we could tidy the garden and 'put it to bed' for the winter.....this along with clearing up and composting everything that was finished in the kitchen garden and also planting a large number of hedging plants took up most of our time, as you can imagine.  I am still awaiting a delivery of about 1,000 spring bulbs which shall need planting shortly......a gardener's work is never done!  An enjoyable week though, interspersed with a quick trip to the beautiful Cotswolds for a birthday lunch with my mother in law, and also a lovely visit from our eldest son and his girlfriend over this last weekend.
How is the weather with you?  Here in the UK, we are all experiencing the effects of 'St. Jude's Storm' as it has been named......torrential rain and high winds.  Although not as bad as we had anticipated here in Kent, it was a long and noisy night last night without much sleep and being exposed and positioned high up on a hill, the winds were extra fierce and loud.  Today is still very blustery and unpredictable.

Add caption

I braved a dog walk earlier this morning, and was relieved to find that there hadn't been too much damage caused in the garden, although three of our large wooden obelisks in the beds at the back of the house had blown over and slightly damaged the box hedging, but nothing too major!

On days like today, I feel fortunate to not have to venture out, and to quietly do my jobs and paperwork sitting at my desk at home.....snug in the warmth while watching the wind and rain and chaos reign outside!
And of course soup is always a good thing to make on days like I am enjoying using the first of our parsnips, along with the added ingredient of apple and mild curry spices.....always a winning combination.  So now I have pleasure in leaving you with the recipe for this delicious winter warming soup, and wish you a safe journey if you are travelling today in the UK, and a very happy Monday  
wherever you are in the world!

'Curried Parsnip and Apple Soup'

700g parsnips
1 medium Bramley apple
1 heaped teaspoon coriander seeds
1 heaped teaspoon cumin seeds
6 whole cardamom pods (seeds only)
40g butter
1 tablespoon groundnut oil
2 medium onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 heaped teaspoon turmeric
1 heaped teaspoon ground ginger
2 pints good flavoured vegetable or chicken stock
salt and freshly milled black pepper

Heat a small frying pan and dry roast the coriander, cumin and cardamom seeds, to draw out the flavour.  Remove and crush finely with a pestle and mortar.  Next, heat the butter and oil in a saucepan until the butter begins to foam, then add the onions and gently soften for about 5 minutes before adding the garlic.
Cook together for 2 minutes then add all the crushed spices, along with the turmeric and ginger, stir and let it all continue to cook gently for a few more minutes while you peel and chop the parsnips into 1 inch dice.  Add the parsnips to the saucepan, stirring well, then pour in the stock, add some seasoning and let the soup simmer as gently as possible for 1 hour without a lid on.
When ready, remove and liquidise to a puree.  Return to the heat and at the last minute just before serving, grate the apple in to the soup........serve with parsnip crisps or garnish with spring onions and/or croutons......yummy....bon appetite!


Sophia xx


  1. We too thankfully didn't suffer too much with the storm. The soup sounds lovely, one I will certainly try very soon. Just perfect for this time of year.
    Have a great week. X

  2. Dear Sophia,

    Thank you for your kind comments on my blog. They helped! Your soup sounds delicious.

    It must have been lovely working in the garden together. Hope your bulbs will arrive soon. I still have to plant a large number as well.

    Have a lovely evening!

    Madelief x