Tag Archive: soup

This is the winning soup of the charity event really. More people picked it than any other soup as the winner. The mushroom soup was joint first only because the people who picked it felt so strongly that it should win. Quality vs quantity of votes really.

This is a crowd pleaser of note.

You need:


1 chopped onion, 2 chopped garlic cloves, 450g of peeled chopped tomatoes. Chop these up small as you will eat them as is.

2 tsp gound cumin, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp groun ginger, 2 tsp chopped fresh parsley

2 x 400g tins of chickpeas, or your own soaked boiled chickpeas

1 litre stock

juice of half a lemon


You do:

Fry the onion and garlic gently in the oil. Add the dry spices and cook until it smells fabulous. Then add half the chickpeas, the tomatoes and 800ml of the stock. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for a few minutes.

Whizz the remaining stock and chickpeas to a smooth puree. Add this to the soup. Heat. Add parsley and lemon juice and serve


It’s so much nicer than it is difficult – a meal in a bowl


I am off tomorrow to buy blankets – have been too busy to do it before.

will post photos of the pile we get

Last night I had a little gathering at my home to collect blankets and raise money to buy more blankets for cold homeless people in Durban.

It was a wonderful success in many ways – we collected 10 blankets, R1100 to buy more blankets, 1 person landed up under the table giggling and 3 of the guests tried to use  mind power to fly the couch home.

I made 4 soups which everyone enjoyed. There was much conversation about soup strategy and how best to attack the options, about which flavours should be eaten in what order, and about how to make sure you had enough space in your tummy to try all four.

Votes were cast and soups rated

in fourth place was spinach & coconut soup

You need:

2 tsp oil

1 chopped onion, 2 garlic cloves, 2 green chillies. I used seeds and all and could have used an extra chilli.

2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp ground coriander, 1/2 tsp tumeric, 1/2 tsp ground ginger. All of these are rough amounts. When I make the soup again I will use more of each.

600ml stock, 600ml coconut milk, juice of 1/2 lemon. Again I will use more next time.

500g spinach. This is a lot of spinach! More than one bunch – almost all of two.


You do:

Heat the oil. Add onion, garlic and chillies. Cook gently for a while – like 4 minutes or so until the onions are getting soft. Stir in the spices and then add the stock and coconut milk. Bring to the boil and then cover, reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.

Clean and shred the spinach. Add to the liquid and cook for a few minutes until the spinach is wilted. The recipe requires you remove 2/3 of the soup and blend in a food processor and then add to the original soup. What I did was use my wand blender and whizzed the soup up until it was the kind of smooth I like. You will never get all the spinach whizzed up so don’t expect a completely smooth, even coloured and textured soup.

Once the soup is smooth enough for you, add the lemon juice and salt to taste. Heat again if necessary and serve. The recipe called for coconut shavings to serve but I have no idea where you would these from and the soup was fine without them. You could possible use desiccated coconut.

I served the soup with french crusty bread.

This soup may have come 4th out of 4 but it was not a loser. Was very nice – the rest were just better.

Recipes 3, 2 and 1 will follow over the next while. As will pictures of the blankets etc

No photos cos we forgot – and then continued to forget as we drank wine, ate soup and giggled

white gazpacho

I always assumed that gazpacho meant cold tomato soup. Seems I have always been wrong. When I was told by a friend she would be serving white gazpacho I could not work out how tomatoes could ever produce a white soup. They didn’t need to as it seems gazpacho really means any cold vegetable soup; it just usually means tomato based.

This white cold soup has become a favourite very quickly; in addition to having it at my friend’s home, I have served it twice in the last month, both time to rave reviews.

It is also really easy.

You need: stock (2 cups), stale (or not) bread (2 cups), blanched almonds (1 cup), seedless white grapes (2 cups), cucumbers (2), garlic (as much as makes you happy – I use about 4 cloves), olive oil (1/4 cup), salt, sheery or cider vinegar (2 – 3 Tablespoons), a food processor.

You do:

Heat the stock and then break the crustless bread into it. The recipe says use good bread so I have used French loaf. A long french loaf is about the right amount of insides. (And the crusty outsides are not very hard to dispose of with butter and cheese.)

While the stock and bread are getting soggy together, whizz the almonds, garlic and salt in a food processor.

Add the cooled stock bread mush and all (if there is any) unabsorbed stock. Whizz that up with the skinned, seeded, chopped cucumber and halved grapes. Stop when it is all mixed and a rough-looking puree. My food processor can do half of this at a time only. Check the capacity of yours and if that is true for you too, I advise you actually make two distinct batches rather than try to divide the stock and bread, or the garlic, almonds and salt after combining them.

Add about a tablespoon of vinegar to the mix and taste. I have not needed to add more than 2 Tablespoons but apparently some grapes need more. Then drizzle in the oil while the food processor is on.

The most recent time I made this I used half chilli and garlic oil, and half plain oil. The little bit of a bite it added was a nice addition, but it is not necessary if you are not a chilli fan.

Taste and add salt if necessary (I have never found it necessary) and chill.

Serve in teacups (if you wish) garnished with chives, almonds or grapes

Absolutely delicious. A perfect starter to a meal and in summer could be a whole meal very easily. But hard to photograph especially after drinking wine while cooking :-). You can google images it if you want to see better pics

The soup is textured and filling.

It got high scores at both outing at my house, and at my friend’s house.

The bf makes soup on Sundays. I am trying hard to establish this as a set-in-stone tradition because it is just fabulous to not have to cook on a Sunday. And soup seems the perfect Sunday dinner. So I shall be encouraging him – a lot!

For Christmas I suggested a family member of mine buy him a soup recipe book (sneaky sneaky) and the result has been some really yummy Sunday night dinners. Now I am back home, I reinstated the new tradition with enthusiasm last night. And got mushroom soup with sage for my efforts. I like mushroom soup but usually balk at the cost of mushrooms. On Saturday we happened upon a mushroom shop and bought a bag of stalks for almost no money and used them. They are perfect for soup as they hold their shape and taste just as good as the tops.

Bf started by prepping everything, cos that’s how he likes to cook. Then he gently fried a finely chopped onion and 2 garlic cloves in some butter. When that looked all translucent, he stirred in a tablespoon of flour and cooked that for about a minute. I helped at this stage (I was actually getting more wine out of the fridge and couldn’t really say no) to pour the stock (1 litre vegetable stock) into the mixture. Once that was all added, 750g of mushrooms went into the pot. The recipe called for wild mushrooms but unless you live on a farm I think these are a little hard to find. We bought a mix of mushrooms and that was fine. We used the aforementioned stalks as well as three other types of mushrooms we found at the veggie market shop.

Anyway – I went back to the couch with my wine and he allowed the mixture to come to the boil. He then turned it down and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Then he added about 5 leaves of sage, chopped up.

We whizzed the soup up with a blender-wand until most but not all of it was creamy. A cup of white wine and seasoning went in at this stage and the whole lot was left to reheat through.

Served with rye bread this was a definite go-back-for-seconds meal. And using the mushrooms stalks meant it was not in the least expensive.

I think the mushrooms cost about R30 and there was enough soup for us to each have two bowlfuls last night and there is enough for one of us for lunch too.

Very nice indeed. Will keep that recipe in mind when next I see mushroom reasonably priced.