Shrimp chowder

Shrimp chowder

chowder

Shrimp chowder

Chowders are rich hearty soups made with seafood like clams, lobster or in this case tinned shrimps. You can also use frozen prawns. It is a fantastic starter or a complete meal served with a salad. (serves 4)

What you need

2 onions finely chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
2 potatoes chopped – about 2cm cubes
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1l hot water
2 chicken stock cubes
Pinch dried thyme
Pinch dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
500ml milk
1 tin shrimps drained or 200g frozen prawns
Palm chopped parsley
Pepper

The process

In a pot on a medium heat, melt the butter and fry the onions and garlic until soft.

Add the flour and stir to form a paste. Add the potatoes, herbs (except the parsley), water and crumble in the stock cube. Stir, cover and simmer for about 15 minutes until the potatoes are soft.

Add the shrimps and milk, bring to the boil, season with pepper, remove from the heat and serve. Sprinkle over the chopped parsley.

Could not be easier and very tasty.

Ribollita

Ribollita

ribollita

Ribollita

This is a traditional Italian soup that uses bread to bulk it up and is really thick, hearty and wholesome. Don’t experiment too much with this one, it’s really good as it is. It’s not what you would expect so if you are planning to have it as a starter, don’t unless your main is not very big, it’s really filling and a great meal all round. (6 people)

What you need

2 onions finely chopped
2 carrots chopped
2 celery sticks finely chopped
1 large clove garlic crushed
Palm of chopped parsley
1 potato chopped
2 large baby marrows chopped
250g spinach washed and chopped
1 tin chopped peeled tomatoes
1/2l water
1 packet tomato soup (powdered)
3 slices bread
Salt and pepper
Oil for frying

The process

Chop up the vegetables that need chopping into 2 cm pieces.

In a pot on a medium heat add the finely chopped onion and garlic, cook until the onion is soft.

Add the rest of the vegetables and cook for about 3 minutes stirring constantly.

Add the water, tomato soup and tin of tomatoes, stir and simmer for about 20 minutes until the vegetables are soft.

Taste and season with salt and pepper, break up the bread, add it to the mixture and simmer on low for another 30 minutes with the lid off stirring occasionally.

Serve straight away with warm crispy bread.

Creamy Irish chicken soup

Creamy Irish chicken soup

creamy-irish-chicken-soup

Irish chicken soup

This recipe really surprised me, it is really creamy and the potato adds such a great texture to the soup. What got me to make it was the bacon, chicken and bacon are a marraige made in heaven, add to that some cream and how wrong can you go! It’s really good, try it. (good for 4 servings)

What you need

4 or 5 slices bacon chopped
500g chicken breast meat in small chunks
2 large potatoes cubed
2 onions chopped
500ml chicken stock
500ml milk
150ml double cream
Palm of finely chopped parsley
1 tablespoon butter

The process

In a large pot on a medium to high heat, add the bacon and chicken pieces and cook, stirring frequently for about 6 minutes until the chicken is white. Add the onions and cook for about another 5 minutes stirring constantly.

Now add the potatoes, butter, stock and milk, give it a stir, bring it to the boil, reduce the heat and allow to simmer for 45 minutes.

Taste and season to your liking.

Add the cream, stir to combine, add the parsley, stir again and then simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Serve straight away with your favorite bread or rolls and a salad t finish off the meal.

Meal in a bowl chicken soup

Meal in a bowl chicken soup

chicken-soupThe nights have been getting a little colder lately and with cold winter nights ahead of us, I thought you might enjoy a a few soup recipes. This one is a meal in a bowl and really simple to make. It’s healthy and has enough substance to fill you up. (enough for 4 people)

What you need

3 or 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts (about 400g)
1 tablespoon butter
3 spring onions sliced
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 litre chicken stock
1 tin chickpeas drained
1 red pepper diced
1 green pepper diced
Palm of chopped fresh herbs (buy the mixed herbs for chicken)
Salt and pepper
100g elbow pasta or pasta shells

The process

In a large pot on a medium to high heat, melt the butter and then add the garlic, spring onions and chicken pieces. Stir fry for about 4-5 minutes until the chicken is white.

Add the herbs, chickpeas and stock and bring to the boil.

Season with salt and pepper , reduce the heat to a slow simmer, place the lid on the pot slightly askew to allow some of the steam to escape and simmer for 1 hour.

Add the chopped peppers and the pasta shells, give it a stir to ensure that the pasta is covered by the stock, place the lid back on simmer for a further 20 minutes or so or until the pasta is cooked.

before serving, bring the heat up again to heat thoroughly.

Serve immediately with a few croutons tossed over to soup and some nice warm ciabatta.

Mussel and white fish soup

Mussel and white fish soup

Mussel soup

The first time I had this soup I just could not get enough of it and had to ply the creator with alcohol before she would release the recipe. It has a mild curry flavor and is another dish you will need a whole lot of bread for to mop up every last drop in the plate. (good for 6 servings)

What you need

2 dozen mussels cleaned
500g of hake or any white fish
1 celery stick chopped
1 medium onion finely chopped
1 carrot chopped
Palm of chopped parsley
2 ripe tomatoes chopped
2 tablespoons tomato puree
2 chicken stock cubes
3 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons curry powder (mild)
1 ½ liters water
1 heaped tablespoon butter
3 tablespoons flour
Salt
Pepper

The process

Cut the fish into larger than bite size pieces.

Add the water to a large pot, add the celery, onion and fish pieces, bring to a boil and reduce heat to low and then simmer for 10 minutes.

Drain through a sieve into a bowl, you need the fish stock you have made and discard the vegetables and flake the fish, set aside.

Melt the butter in the pot, add the curry powder and the flour and stir until smooth. Add the tomato puree and add back the stock slowly, stirring constantly and bring to the boil.

Crumble in the chicken stock cubes and the chopped tomatoes and allow to simmer for 2 minutes.

Add back the flaked fishand the mussels and simmer for another 5 minutes or so, season with salt and pepper (if need be) and stir in the chopped parsley.

Serve with plenty of crusty bread.

This is really worth the effort folks. It’s light, really tasty and a full meal on it’s own.

Enjoy!

Tom Yum soup my way

Tom Yum soup my way

asian food tom yum soup

Tom Yum Soup

This is my take on this very popular Asian soup. It takes just 5 minutes and is perfect for something quick and light if you have a bag of frozen peeled prawns in the freezer. This is enough for 4 people.

What you need

2 chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces
250g frozen raw prawns
750ml chicken stock
1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
1 clove minced garlic
2 dried red chilis chopped(optional)
Salt and black pepper

The process

Remove the prawns from the freezer and let them thaw

Bring the stock to a boil in a large pot and add chili(if you want it spicy), garlic, ginger and the chicken pieces and allow to cook for 2 minutes.

Taste and season with salt and a good amount of black pepper.

Add the prawns and cook for another 2 minutes.

Remove from the heat and serve straight away.

The prawns should still be firm but cooked through. You can also add chopped bok choy leaves with the prawns as an option which I do sometimes.

For a heartier meal I have poured the soup over cooked egg noodles, which is really good. Try some of the other Asian recipes

Chunky Gazpacho

Chunky Gazpacho

Chunky Gazpacho

Gazpacho is a really healthy and tasty cold tomato based soup that is perfect for hot summer weather. You will need a blender, (hand blender will do) and you can spice it up with a little paprika or Tabasco if you like some heat. Only use fresh tomatoes, I tried with tinned tomatoes and it just did not cut it.

What you need

3 large tomatoes
1 cucumbers
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 onion
2 sticks celery with some leaves
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
1/4 cup of olive oil
2 1/2 cups of tomato juice
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
2 cups tomato juice

The process

All you need to do is dice up all the vegetables, place them in a blender along with the liquid and blend until you get the consistency you like. taste and season.

I like it like this

Blend the onions and green pepper with the liquid first to small chunks.

Add the rest and blend, leaving some nice chunky tomato and red pepper pieces.

This will be enough for 4 and can easily be increased.

Detox time vegetable soup

Detox time vegetable soup

Detox Soup

If you, like me have been procrastinating and finding every excuse in the book not to return to the gym and get into shape after a very satisfying winter feeding frenzy, you might want to give this great detox soup recipe a try. It will spur you on and your body will thank you!
What you need

2 leeks chopped
4 celery sticks chopped
1 cloves crushed garlic
4 carrots sliced
2 cups chopped cabbage
1 handful of chopped spinach (green only)
1 handful of chopped flat leaf parsley
1.5l vegetable or chicken stock
1 tin peeled chopped tomatoes
Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

If you feel you need a bit of protien add a tin of borlotti or cannellini beans that you have drained well.
The process

In a large pot on a medium heat, fry the garlic to infuse the falovor into the oil. Add the leeks, celery and carrot pieces and cook them for about 4/5 minutes stirring from time to time.

Add all the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes or so.

This is a really good immune system booster and you will be surprised at how good you feel the next day.

I predict that this will get your mind right and you will be at the gym the very next day! Diet and Nutrition recipes

Ribollita – Italian peasant soup

Ribollita – Italian peasant soup

ribollita

Ribollita

Oh baby it’s cold outside! This is a really hearty soup full of vegetables that is very tasty and satisfying. It’s typical Italian peasant food. Ribollita is a fantastic hearty meal ideal for winter.
What you need

olive oil
1 onion finely chopped
1 carrot chopped
1 celery stalk chopped
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 tin chopped peeled tomatoes
15g tomato purée
1l vegetable or chicken stock
1 tin cannelloni beans
1/2 head Savoy cabbage thinly sliced
salt and black pepper to taste

The process

In a large pot with a little olive oil, add the onion, garlic, celery and carrot and cook for a few minutes.

Add the tomatoes with the juice, tomato puree and stock. Give it a good stir and simmer while you drain the cannelloni beans.

Add the cannelloni beans, bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or so.

Add the cabbage and simmer for a further 10 minutes, taste and season with salt and pepper.

Serve with nice crusty bread.

You can also add 1 diced potato, some diced spicy Italian sausage and about 200ml of stock if you want a more substantial meal.

Goulash soup

Goulash soup

hungarian goulash

There is little as satisfying as a rich and spicy soup that has these little gems of flavor just under the surface. This is a Czech version of a favorite winter warmer.

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