Tag Archives: recipe

I don’t even like carrots….

In the interest of preempting temptation and setting new habits in place we’re been doing a load of cooking at home.  In particular preparing  meals ahead of time so there is no excuse come lunch to run out for a bite.    Besides there’s nothing wrong with investing the time in a new habit.

Szechwan Carrot Soup

There was a study done at University College London a few years ago that found that there is huge variation in the amount of time it takes to form a new habit. Anything from a couple of weeks up to months depending on the type of habit you’re trying to form and the techniques you use to do so.

We’ve set a goal in our house of having a well cooked and thoughtful meal each night. That usually involves an hour of work, and since it takes just as much time to make 4 portions as it does 2 we’ve been doubling up recipes and increasing portions so the work is done for upcoming nights and lunches.  Some nights while one meal is cooking I’m also able to prepare another behind the scenes for upcoming days.

This  Szechuan Carrot Soup is one of those added bonus meals and you can likely throw it together using stuff you already have in the cupboard.  It is a cinch to make, and tasted absolutely delicious when we ate it a day later….and I don’t even like carrots.

Szechuan Carrot Soup

  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 or 2 ribs of celery
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 lb carrots, cut 1″ (or baby carrots for more sweetness)
  • 1/2″ piece of fresh ginger (peeled & sliced)
  • 1/4 tsp pepper flakes (you can always sub red Thai curry paste here as well)
  • 3 cups broth (we had beef so that’s what we used)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsps soy sauce
  • 1/2 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Sesame Oil
  • 1 cup milk (you can also use silky tofu if you aren’t into the dairy, or use  coconut milk for a Thai infusion )

Chop up your onions, celery and garlic.  I threw mine all in the food processor and minced it pretty fine.  In a large heavy saucepan cook onion, celery, and garlic in veg oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until onion is softened.

Peel your knob of ginger, then slice it thinly.

art of doing stuff

I got a great tip from ‘The art of doing stuff’.  Karen says the easiest way to peel ginger, is to just scrape the skin off with a spoon. and she was 100% correct!  Just the brown stuff  comes off leaving all the lovely ginger bits behind.  brilliant!

Add the sliced ginger to the softened onions along with the chopped carrots, red pepper flakes, and broth and simmer, covered, until carrots are very tender, about 30  minutes (until you can run the tines of a  fork through one of the pieces  easily).

Stir in remaining ingredients and in a blender puree mixture in batches (use caution when blending hot liquids).  Return soup to pan and heat over low heat until hot, being careful not to let boil or you will ruin your milk bit.  Ladle that good stuff out and add a dollop of sour cream, or plain yogourt to the top, even a squirt of lime juice…though it tastes pretty great left plain too.

Makes 6 cups of  ‘ready to roll when you are’ soup.

Gourmet Magazine, April 1997

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Buttermilk and Asparagus Salad

Buttermilk Asparagus Salad

The fella’s gone on a fast leaving me to fend for myself meal wise.

I could be a real jerk and fill the house with the heady rich smells of  freshly delivered Wood fired Sausage and Ricotta Pizza from our local shop.  Or perhaps some creamy Butter Chicken and Daal with fresh crispy Naan.  Perhaps a huge West Indian Roti filled to the breaking point with Roasted Goat, potato and chickpea…

Or I can head to the market and load up on a fridge full of fresh fruit, seasonal veggie  and get my cook on; indulging in all the flavours I like in a loving show of support. Continue reading

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quick hits of delicious inspiration

Pssssst,  there’s a whole other side to this site that you might not know about.
We tend to save the quick hits of inspiration for our facebook page.

It’s where we post stuff like this

renovationslaves facebooik blueprint for your wall Continue reading

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once round the kitchen, salted buttermilk(ish) cake

Whipped up this bad boy on Sunday.

blueberry banana salted buttermilk cake

Hands down this has got to be one of my all time favourite weekend cakes.  It’s super easy to make with ingredients on hand. Very forgiving with substitutions, and tastes great as a quick bite with coffee or tea.

Just try not to get too comfortable with this recipe tossing ingredients in left and right or you may make the same horrible mistake I did. Continue reading

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Maple Buttermilk Pie

It’s sugaring season folks.

Just about this time of year we head north east and volunteer at a friends maple syrup farm. Our job is to boil down the syrup and pour it over trays of fresh snow so visitors to the farm can twirl the cooling Maple Taffy around sticks n pop it into their mouths, it’s a sticky job but someone’s got to do it. Continue reading

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bowl full o spring

It’s time to shake things up in our house.
The recent dump of snow has thrown a damp blanket on any hope that spring has sprung and sadly moral is at an all time low.
I’m craving a fresh lightness, soft shades of yellow and green, a warm sun that will stream through our windows and the delicate crisp crunch of new vegetables.  Time to put away the heavy comfort flavours of garlic and roasted turkey paste and bring out the springy zings of lemon, yogurt and Za’atar. Continue reading
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Ilaria’s torta sbrisolana

Ok lets face it, Mondays stink…

But maybe not so much when you walk into the office to find this buttery almond treat waiting for you. Continue reading

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