I know it sounds like a very strange combo, but last nights supper was this hugely yummy soup with garlic bread (an absolute must in this house if you have a day or two old baguette hanging around), followed by Hubbie and I cooking cookies after bedtime for packed lunch boxes today. True love!
Curried Parsnip and Apple Soup with Parsnip Crisps
- 1½ lb (700 g) young parsnips
- 1 medium Bramley apple (6oz/175g)
- 1 heaped teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 heaped teaspoon cumin seeds
- 6 whole cardamom pods (seeds only)
- 1½ oz (40 g) butter
- 1 tablespoon groundnut oil
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 heaped teaspoon turmeric
- 1 heaped teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 pints (1.2 litres) good-flavoured vegetable or chicken stock
- salt and freshly milled black pepper
- For the parsnip crisps:
- 1 medium to large parsnip (10-12 oz/275-350 g)
- 6 tablespoons groundnut oil
Begin by heating a small frying pan and dry roasting the coriander, cumin and cardamom seeds – this is to toast them and draw out their flavour. After 2-3 minutes they will change colour and start to jump in the pan. Remove them from the pan and crush them finely with a pestle and mortar. Next, heat the butter and oil in a saucepan until the butter begins to foam, then add the onions and gently soften for about 5 minutes before adding the garlic. Let that cook, along with the onions, for another 2 minutes, then add all the crushed spices, along with the turmeric and ginger, stir and let it all continue to cook gently for a few more minutes while you peel and chop the parsnips into 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice. Add the parsnips to the saucepan, stirring well, then pour in the stock, add some seasoning and let the soup simmer as gently as possible for 1 hour without putting on a lid.
To make the parsnip crisps, peel the parsnip and then slice it into rounds as thinly as you possibly can, using a sharp knife. Now heat the oil in a 10 inch (25.5 cm) frying pan until it is very hot, almost smoking, then fry the parsnip slices in batches until they are golden brown, for about 2-3 minutes (they will not stay flat or colour evenly but will twist into lovely shapes). As they’re cooked, remove them with a slotted spoon and spread them out on kitchen paper to drain. Sprinkle lightly with salt. (If you like, you can make these in advance, as they will stay crisp for a couple of hours.)
Or if like us, you have an old baguette lurking in the bread bin, cut slices into it (but not all the way through) 2cm apart. Crush 4 cloves of garlic and mash it into about 50g of soft butter. Spread into the cuts, wrap in foil and bake for 15 minutes until crispy. (at around 190 deg)
When the soup has been simmering for an hour, remove it from the heat, then liquidise it if possible. If not, use a food processor and then a sieve – or even just a sieve, squashing the ingredients through using the bowl of a ladle. After the soup has been puréed, return it to the saucepan, taste to check the seasoning, then, when you’re ready to serve, re-heat very gently.
While that’s happening, peel the apple and, as the soup just reaches simmering point, grate the apple into it. Be careful to let the soup barely simmer for only 3-4 minutes.
Serve in hot soup bowls garnished with the parsnip crisps.
Big Fat Chewy, Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 250 g all-purpose flour
- 2 g baking soda
- 3 g salt
- 170 g unsalted butter, melted
- 220 g packed brown sugar
- 100 g white sugar
- 15 ml vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 335 g semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon. Drop cookie dough 1/4 cup at a time onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 3 inches apart.
Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
Related articles (all posts have really great autumn recipes to try out!)
- Autumn Eats: Root Vegetable Fries (blisstree.com)
- Cinnamon Chip Oatmeal Cookies (bakerunlive.com)
- Autumn Meals (jenawix.wordpress.com)
- Peanut Butter Cookies (scddiet4kids.wordpress.com)
- Cook Fast, Live Young: Celebrate the Autumnal Equinox with these Fabulous Fall Foods (savings.com)