Tag Archives: butternut

A Simple Vegetable Soup for a Tired Mummy

29 Jun

I loved the fresh fruit and vegetables we got at Whole Foods – what a feast for the senses! When MZ was exhausted and didnt really even have the energy to eat (thats what happens when you are at full time work and have a gorgeous babygirl), I would try and make her things that would taste good, but go down easy. This vegetable soup is really as simple as it reads – inspired by what was in the store, and flavoured by nothing more than a little rind of parmesan and salt and pepper. The vegetables were all organic, and their flavour and colour were vivid and vibrant. You dont really need spices or herbs when the veg are this good. Wonderful served with a simple grilled cheese sandwich, or even some bread and tomatoes.

Serves 4

  • 2 – 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 2 – 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 – 2 large portobello mushrooms, peeled and chopped roughly
  • 3 – 4 carrots, washed and chopped
  • 1 zucchini, washed and chopped
  • 1 small head of broccoli, washed and chopped
  • 1 small butternut, peeled, deseeded and chopped
  • Handful of baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Rind of parmesan if you have it (omit for vegan)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

In a saucepan, heat oil over medium heat and soften onion and garlic. Once they have softened, and are glistening happily, add the mushrooms, and stir to combine. As soon as the mushrooms release some of their liquid, add the carrots. Stir to combine.

Add the zucchini, and allow it to release its own liquid into the pan. Stir all together, and add the broccoli, butternut, spinach and water, and stir all well. Pop in the rind of parmesan (this will add a bit of salt, and a haunting dusky note that is just lovely), if you have it, and cover with a lid for about five minutes, lowering the heat.

Once you take the lid off, take out the parmesan, and think about your choices. You could mash and mush the vegetables by hand with a potato masher, or you could transfer cup by cup to a blender or food processor. Dont completely liquidise the soup – you want it chunky and thick. After you pulse gently, transfer back to pan, and take another cup of vegetables to puree. Do this until you have the consistency you prefer, and only now taste for salt and pepper. Sometimes the vegetables are so fresh and sweet, you dont need much addition.

Serve with plenty of love.

Memories of a Vegetarian Thanksgiving

23 Jun

A Thanksgiving for everyone – even the turkey!

M + I cooking together, for Z’s first Thanksgiving…

  • Honey glazed carrots
  • Green beans with crispy friend onions
  • Cornbread stuffing with jerusalem artichokes, mushrooms, kale, and dried cranberries
  • Cranberry honey whiskey sauce
  • Puff pastry roll with mushrooms and pine nuts
  • Garlic mash potatoes
  • Red wine onion gravy
  • Roasted butternut and sweet potato with a maple glaze
  • Berry crumble
  • Pecan pie
  • Red wine and honey poached pears dipped in bittersweet chocolate with vanilla ice cream

… and there are only 4 of us sitting down to dinner!

This was the first Thanksgiving I celebrated in my sister, M’s house in Washington DC. I was there helping to look after Z, my beloved niece. My sister is vegetarian too, and with the advent of her daughter, we found that she was pretty intolerant to milk and dairy products. So we held back on layering the butter everywhere, though we didn’t completely do without it. It was a sumptuous meal, redolent of the most beautiful produce of the season. The colors where phenomenal, and M’s non-vegetarian BSA and our TBH didn’t even miss the turkey!

One of these days, I will try and recreate it and post the recipes. But the menu itself is pretty phenomenal!