Cook Arford

Easy recipes from Apple Tree

Category: Soups etc (page 2 of 2)

Pumpkin and Sweetcorn Soup

This is made once a year in our house, using the remains of Mr Pumpkinhead above.

  • 750g to 1kg pumpkin, seeds and skin removed (and grit and candle wax) and cut into chunks.
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 500g sweetcorn, frozen is fine
  • 750ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • 250ml milk
  • oil or butter for frying

Method: sweat the onion and sweetcorn in a heavy based saucepan for 5 minutes. Add the stock and milk, and 300g of the sweetcorn. Simmer very gently for 20 minutes.  Meanwhile, fry the rest of the sweetcorn on a hot pan in butter or oil or under a grill until it looks a bit tinged brown. When the soup is done, zap with a blender or stick. Adjust the seasoning, pour into bowls and top with the toasted sweetcorn.

Ham and lentil soup

Make this with the stock left after you have boiled your ham.

  • 2 litres of ham stock (remove the cloves, bay leaves and peppercorns!)
  • All the vegetables used to flavour the ham joint
  • Dried red lentils: from 420gms for thin soup to 620 gms for really thick soup.

All you do is simmer the lentils in the stock for 20 minutes, stirring from time to time to avoid it catching on the base of the pan. Whizz with a blender or stick and adjust the seasoning.

Parsnip Soup

Another easy one.

  • 250gm parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 1 potato, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon curry paste
  • 800ml vegetable stock
  • 120ml cream
  • Butter/oil

You know what is coming – all soups are made more or less the same way. First sweat the veg in the oil for 5 minutes. Add the curry paste and sweat another minute or two. Add the stock and simmer for 20 – 30 minutes or until the vegetables are very soft.  Blitz in a blender or with a stick. Stir in the cream, reheat and serve. You can also make this with parsnip and potato leftovers (now there’s a Christmas idea…)

Anyveg Soup

Like it says. You can make soup out of almost anything veggie, but a mixture is safest. For example, roots: carrot, onion, potato, parsnip, swede.

  • 1Kg mixed veg, cleaned and chopped roughly
  • 1 litre vegetable stock from a cube or powder
  • Oil or butter
  • salt and pepper to adjust seasonings (depends on your stock)


Heat oil gently in a large saucepan.

Sweat root vegetable for 5-10 minutes, other veg 2-5 minutes. Pour in the hot stock and simmer for 30-40 minutes. Zap with a blender or stick, then adjust the seasoning. Some stock cubes can be quite salty. You can also swirl in some cream and sprinkle on chopped fresh parsley for a posh touch.

Sour cream dip

As approved by a real American.

  • 2 cups sour cream or creme fraiche
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 2 tbs chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh chive
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Mix
  2. Dip!


You need:

  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained
  • 2tbs olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove or equivalent (or more)
  • Lemon juice – 1/2 to 1 lemon
  • Salt
  • Optional – 1tbs tahini paste

Stick it all in a jar and blitz with a stick blender. That is all there is to it. Adjust the ratio of ingredients to find the combo you like.

Blanker’s Broth (Prawn and Pepper Chowder)

It happens to all of us – we have great plans for a fish supper but catch nothing. It would be just too much to pay for stale fish of the species we catch, so the only thing to do is to buy something we don’t usually catch – in this case prawns, and possibly a tin of anchovies. For four people you will need:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 rashers of bacon, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
  • 1 large (or 2 small) red peppers, seeded and finely chopped
  • 225g tomatoes, skinned and chopped (or cheat and use a tin)
  • 900ml chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 40g long-grain rice
  • 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
  • 50g peeled prawns, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • handful of whole peeled and cooked prawns
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Fry the onion, bacon and garlic gently in oil until soft. Add almost all of the minced peppers and continue frying for 2-3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, stock, rice, vinegar, bay leaf, salt and pepper, and simmer, covered, for 25 minutes until it is all soft and mingled. Discard the bay leaf, and add the chopped prawns and parsley. Simmer for another 6 minutes. Serve in warm bowls, garnished with whole prawns and the remaining chopped red pepper.

Where did those anchovies come in you may ask? If you like the salty flavour, try anchovy bread with it. Take a French baton loaf, and make an anchovy butter by mashing a tin of anchovies with 100g of unsalted butter. Cut slits in the bread and stuff the slits with anchovy butter, as you would for garlic bread. Wrap in foil, and bake in an oven at 180deg C for 15 minutes

Carrot and Coriander Soup

This is for when someone bought more carrots when we already had a bag. This makes enough for four large bowls:

  • 500g carrots, sliced. No need to peel, just wash grit off
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1.25 litres vegetable stock (I use Marigold bouillon powder)
  • Chopped fresh coriander

This is very easy. Just chop the onion and sweat in butter or oil in a heavy pan for a few minutes. Add the ground coriander, sweat for another minute then add the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer covered for 30 minutes. Whiz in a blender or use a stick blender. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Chop and add the fresh coriander. Tastes very carroty!

Very nice with bread and cheese from Cowdray farm shop….


Broccoli and Cheese Soup

This makes enough for four or you can let it cool, keep in the fridge and heat up a bowlful at a time.
Ingredients (for four):

  • one onion
  • two potatoes
  • 500g broccoli
  • 1 litre vegetable stock made from cubes or pot
  • 100g cheese (any – hard, soft, blue), chopped or grated
  • 150ml milk
  • Oil, salt, pepper
  • Take your onions and potatoes and chop small. Heat the oil in a pan and sweat the veg until soft. Add the broccoli and sweat a minute or two more. Add the stock, cook for 20-30 minutes until everything is soft. Blend until smooth. Add the milk and cheese, heat through until melted and just on the simmer again. Take off the heat, and adjust the seasoning.

    Courgette and Brie Soup

    You need:

    • 500gms courgettes sliced
    • 1 onion
    • 2 potatoes
    • 1 litre vegetable stock
    • 200gms brie cheese
    • olive oil

    Chop the onion and potatoes roughly.
    Sweat in a pan with a tablespoon of oil for five minutes.
    Add the courgettes and stock.
    Simmer 20 minutes.
    Whiz in a blender or a stick.
    Add the brie, and heat through to melt.
    Adjust seasoning.

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