Oh my, this weather! It is days like this that has me texting my husband with links to properties in Miami. He’s not always delighted to receive this in the middle of a meeting, or whatever it is he does during those hours between 7 and 6, presuming that this is another fad. True, I’ve never been to Miami and much of my knowledge of it has been gleaned from watching Dexter (a serial killer probably shouldn’t be the inspiration for moving across the world) but still, he could at least look at the details.
This morning it seemed certain that the conditions were such that school would be closed and imaginations were running wild with thoughts of sledging and snowball fights (them) and hot chocolate and afternoon movies (me). However, it was not to be. The school, it seems, is made of sterner stuff and so the little people were shipped off to school in wellies and I have stayed at home, keeping warm with the kitten. The kitten hasn’t seen snow before and has spent most of the day so far sitting on the landing window sill, yowling loudly at the flakes as they swirl past her eyes. It started off very sweet, but has become rather tiresome.
Anyway, the cat and I are in agreement that it is FAR too cold to be leaving the house – though I feel a little guilty thinking this, as the larger smaller person will be swimming with School (!), right about now, trudging back a mile across town through a blizzard with wet hair and frostbitten feet. Poor lamb… Still, no point us both being miserable!
I have previously explained my antipathy towards supermarkets (much stems back to being mistaken for my infant daughter’s nanna. I was 33. She was a bad sleeper, but even so.) I am a strange sort of lazy anyway. I would honestly rather bake a loaf than have to get my coat on and drive less than a minute to the Co-op, so there’s no way I’m leaving the house IN SNOW for soup, when there’s a perfectly good drawer full of limp vegetables, mere days away from a compost bin, in the bottom of my fridge.
This soup is actually my favourite. It’s spicy and warming and feels like it must be doing an awful lot of good. Obvs, leave out the chilli if it’s not for you. My children find soup loathsome so I don’t have to consider their tastes in this, but you might.
This is what I use as a basis, but see what you’ve got, that’s salvageable in your own salad drawer. It’s very forgiving. Any proportions of these ingredients will taste good together and you could substitute ingredients with bacon, sweet potato or butternut squash.
- 2 onions – roughly chopped – red are nice, any are fine.
- 2-3 carrots roughly chopped
- 2-3 big peppers – any colour but green, roughly chopped
- 6 salad tomatoes/punnet of cherry tomatoes – cut in half.
- Garlic – 2-3 cloves
- Chorizo – I used a leftover piece about 10cm long sliced into coins.
- 1 chilli – stalk removed. Seeds left inside if you like spice
- olive oil
- 1 tin of tomatoes
- A couple of generous handfuls of frozen sweet corn.
- Chicken stock
- Throw the chopped vegetables, chilli, chorizo and garlic cloves onto a couple of baking sheets and drizzle with olive oil. Roast in the oven for about 40 mins.
- Tip the roasted vegetables into a large saucepan and add the sweet corn and tinned tomatoes, and approx 400 ml of chicken stock
- Cook gently for about half an hour. Or less. Or more. Whizz with a stick blender, adding a little more water if it seems a bit thick.
Depending on how much of the ingredients you use and how much water you add, you should make 4-6 portions. It freezes well or keeps in the fridge for 3 days. I like to take some into work to provide a nutritious lining to my stomach in readiness for all the staff room biscuits.