It’s been a little while, but man have I been busy. I’ve been to Glasgow for a birthday weekend, Florida to visit Universal Studios and finally attend the grandaddy of them all, Wrestlemania and after all that I’ve been to Scotland for my dad’s 60th birthday, Yorkshire to see my girlfriend’s family and finally Newcastle to see an old uni friend get married. It’s been incredibly hectic, and as such I’ve not had much of a chance to write anything, but I’ve got a fair few things lined up, including a bunch of words about the trips above, but I’m starting with a recipe for a curry I’ve been making almost weekly since the start of the year; Squash, Black Eyed Bean and Coconut Curry. Read more
I love Sriracha, I’ve said this before and I’ll probably say it again. I’m one of those annoying types who says things like ‘if I could I’d put sriracha on everything’. And I’ve put it on a lot, from sriracha ribs (sorry, any vegans/veggies reading this) and glazed tofu through to popcorn. It has a flavour under the warmth that compliments a lot of dishes. A few months ago I was put onto this peanut sriracha soup recipe by my friend Tiffanni and since then I’ve made it almost monthly. It’s really quick, perfect for a mid week meal, only needs a small selection of ingredients and includes two of my favourite flavours in sriracha and peanut butter. Read more
It’s cold outside now. The temperature has moved on from autumn and over to a blustery winter, today at least. It’s time to get yourself indoors, batten down the hatches and make a big batch of something warm. Maybe a squash soup, a hearty meat stew or something a little different but equally as tasty, like this brown ale, mushroom & lentil soup. It’ll sort out your lunches for a few days or feed a family for a dark wintery evening. So wrap yourself up warm and get a large pot onto the stove for this one.
I’ve started on the autumn food. I’ve jumped in head first and I’m as good as swimming in the piles of coloured leaves after a few of the things I’ve made this week (more of those to come soon). I’ve also gone veggie for the month of October (partly in solidarity to a couple of workmates giving up smoking for Stoptober and partly because of wanting to see whether I could). The main issue is lunch options. Most shops have them, but due to my (completely rational) hatred of cucumber and not being keen on cold egg, it’s better to make my own. I’m good with this anyway as I try to make my lunches each week as it is. This is one I’ve made countless times, and when I got to the shop to find they’d not got any butternut squash, it was my go to fall back option. Sweet potato, coconut & chilli soup is warming, creamy and has a nice little kick. Read more
It’s autumn, basically my favourite time of the year. I can start wearing knitwear every day and put pumpkin in everything (once I get a kitchen I want to do a pumpkin cake with cinnamon drizzle). However until I’ve got my baking stuff it’s a bit tricky. Tim’s kitchen is perfectly stocked for actual cooking though. The other great thing about this time of year is that it’s such a great time of year to make soups and one-pots. They are such a cheap option, being hearty, warming and filling. While I write up the intro for this recipe the soup is currently sat bubbling away on the stove.
I spent Sunday pottering around E17, where I am lucky enough to be staying at the moment (we put an offer in for a flat in Clapham on Friday, so fingers crossed). The area looks great at this time of year, as it’s one of the more “green” parts of London. Well, green in the summer anyway. Right now it’s a wonderful array of different colours.
I was first introduced to pumpkin soup when I was backpacking in Australia. A few people in my hostel were working on a pumpkin farm and bought some leftovers back, turning it into a rich pumpkin soup. The main pumpkins sold in England are display pumpkins rather than cooking ones. Butternuts make a great substitute for a similar type of soup however. Roasted squash soup (perhaps with a tiny bit of chorizo to add some smokiness) makes a great thick soup.
My only issue here is not having a blender means it ended up being a chunkier soup than I’d normally make.
Crème Fraiche (I tend to put a dollop in each bowl)
Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C fan assisted), drizzle oil over the deseeded butternut halves, place on a baking tray and roast for around 45 minutes.
In oil, fry the onions until soft over a medium heat (add the chorizo now if using). Add in the paprika, carrots and garlic and fry for a further couple of minutes before adding in the scooped out squash.
Drop the temperature to low. Pour over the veg stock, cover and simmer for about 90 minutes, stirring occasionally. The squash should start breaking down. At this point, either mash it up or blend it.
Dollop crème fraiche on top to serve. I also sprinkle paprika over the top.