Weekend lunches are always a bit hit and miss. As the children grow they have different activities. A formal lunchtime is no longer an option, so I try to create lunches which can be eaten as they and their extra friends pass through the house.
Soups are warming, welcoming and they can be as hearty and cleverly filled with vegetables without the children realising. Minestrone is a particular favourite. It takes a little more preparation but is definitely worth the extra effort. The earlier you prepare it in the day the better the flavours blend and the richer the soup tastes.
onions finely chopped
bacon small lardons
leeks finely chopped
carrots finely chopped
other vegetables you wish to use up – chop finely
splash of sherry
spaghetti chopped into tiny pieces
grated parmesan or cheddar to garnish
Heat the oil and add the onions and begin to soften
Add the bacon lardons and let them start to cook.
Add the other vegetables depending on how long they need cooking carrots should be early on with green beans if you are using followed by softer vegetables like leeks.
Keep stirring occasionally to stop it sticking.
Add a splash of Sherry or sometimes I use Masala if I have no Sherry. Stir well.
Stir in the tinned tomatoes and then add the chicken stock. bring to the boil. Allow it to boil well for a few minutes.
Keeping it boiling add the broken up pasta, allowing it to continue cooking for long enough to cook the pasta “al dente”. Add extra water if required.
Keep cooking this for as long as required on a low heat, remembering to stir occaisionally.
When the time comes serve with the grated cheese and with warm crusty bread of your choice. warming, popular and great to stretch for unexpected guests.
Enjoy and let me have your soup recipes to try out.
take a look at my complex and busy life in my other blog Tiggy Hayes