Another one of my favourite things about winter (other than my most comfy pair of slippers) is soup. This split pea soup is absolutely delicious served piping hot with a warm and crispy bread roll.
Since it’s a slow cooker recipe as well, there’s practically no work to be done other than chuck ingredients into the pot and go on your merry little way! Super easy! In fact, as I was on my way home on Tuesday afternoon, I suddenly realised that I would arrive home to delicious soup that has already been cooked and the only thing I had to do was pop the rolls into the oven, dish up and take a photo for you! Happy, happy, happiness!
If you don’t have a minute for chopping/grating stuff, WOOLWORTHS SA fresh split pea soup mix also works fantastically! Just add some herbs and bits and bobs and away you go!
- 1 Bay leaf
- 2 large carrots, grated
- 3 chopped celery ribs
- 1 Large leek, chopped and rinsed
- 1 teaspoon (heaped) crushed garlic
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley OR some fresh sprigs
- 500grams dried green split peas
- 6 cups Vegetable stock
- ground salt & black pepper
- Optional: diced ham or bacon
Toss all the ingredients into a slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours.
Our Meat Free Monday dinner is an amazing Triple tomato and basil pasta, as usual with gluten free spaghetti. My favourite gluten free pasta is San Remo from Pick n Pay – so good that my guys don’t notice any difference at all!
On a soccer night this is quick and easy to make, although I did stray quite a bit from the original recipe. To be honest, pounds and ounces are just confusing and with a gang of hungry boys I didn’t have time to Google each amount! So Mamma “wung it”, as we do!
Recipe (feeds 4-6)
In a large pot, start cooking spaghetti (approx 400g) according to instructions on the packet.
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add roughly chopped sundried tomatoes (1/3 cup) and chopped and peeled tomatoes (1 tin), simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring halfway. Add 2 teaspoons crushed garlic, salt, black pepper to taste (optional red chilli flakes). Stir well, simmer for 2 minutes.
Drain the pasta about 2 minutes before the end of its cooking time, leaving it in the pot.
Back at the stove, pour the tomato mixture over the pasta. Add 4 cups vegetable stock, approx. 180ml tomato paste, place over high heat and stir while rapidly boiling for about 5 minutes or until sauce has evaporated sufficiently to your liking and the pasta is cooked.
Remove the pot from heat, stir in 2 handfuls chopped fresh basil, cover and let stand for 2 minutes while opening a lovely bottle of red wine.
Serve with some extra basil and Parmesan cheese, if you wish.
Speaking of basil, let me tell you about the unfortunate basil incident…
I have a lovely little basil plant in my kitchen window and it gives me such a good feeling to use its leaves in my cooking. At one point, I noticed that it looked like some little buglet was munching on my basil! I couldn’t see any bugs and left it at that, until one evening I went to touch the plant and nearly squished a skinny little bright green worm who was making his way to the leaf right at the top of the plant! Could have been a hungry caterpillar, I don’t know! I screamed, I imagine he screamed and once everyone had had a chance to recover, he was relocated to a new home outside and away from my herbs!
The unfortunate part is that my basil plant did not recover as fast as the hungry caterpillar and I did and I now have to use store bought fresh basil. Tastes just as good though! 🙂
Share your thoughts and any yummy additions you made!
Butternut soup seems to be a controversial meal (in my house anyway – leading to a great debate about soups which eventually led to a victory for green soup!)… Nevertheless, this to me was amazing today! Warm, just a little sweet, perfect!
It’s also totally vegan (unless you sprinkle with crispy bacon before serving, gluten free, dairy free and sugar free… Win!
Butternut & Quinoa Soup
2 cups vegetable stock
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and grated
800g butternut, peeled and diced
1 cup quinoa
1 sprig fresh sage
1 white onion, diced
Salt & pepper to taste
pinch of ground cinnamon and nutmeg
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
optional garnishes: bacon, extra coconut milk and a sprinkle of cayenne pepper or paprika
Add vegetable stock, garlic, carrot, apple, butternut squash, quinoa, sage, onion, salt, pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg to slow cooker. Stir to combine.
Cook for 6-8 hours on low, or 3-4 hours on high, or until the butternut is completely tender and mashes easily with a fork. Remove and discard the sage. Stir in the coconut milk.
Use a hand held blender to puree the soup until smooth. (Be very careful when working with the hot liquid.) Taste, and season with additional salt, pepper if needed.
Serve warm, with optional garnishes if desired and of course your choice of toasty and crispy bread, in our case ciabatta.
Let us know if you made any interesting additions or changes! Love to hear from you!