White Bean Soup | Zuppa di Fagioli

Here I sit at the (usually) hottest part of the year, and as I write it is a cool day, and wet. So we find ourselves wanting Autumnal food. Having made a risotto yesterday, I am using the remainder of the stock to make a white bean soup – luckily I had the forethought to soak the beans overnight. You have to bless the Italians, right? Simple food with great flavours.

This soup is just gorgeous because the beans just seem to float in this gorgeous broth.

White beans are great – versatile for Summer in Salads, and in Winter for Soups, pasta sauces and more hearty dishes. Use cannellini or haricot beans when white beans are specified. Keep them in your pantry year-round.

Other White Bean recipes include: Grilled Eggplant Salad with Pine Nuts, White Beans and Pita Chips, Florentine Beans, and Tuscan Beans with Sage and Lemon.

All of our Cannellini Bean recipes are here, and our Haricot Bean recipes here.  See all of our Italian recipes. Or browse our wonderful Soups. Our easy Mid Autumn recipes are all here.

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Seasonal Cooking | Easy Cold Soups in Summer

Use the juicer to produce great cold soups.

The hot weather continues in Adelaide with stunning sunrises and sunsets. Cold soups are perfect, and I have stumbled across a great way to prepare them quickly and easily.

Fundamental to my method is the use of a cold press juicer. It juices not only without heat from whirring blades, but also does not aerate and foam the juice like other types of juicers can do. You can use a centrifugal juicer (the usual type) but let the juice sit for a while to lose some of its aeration.

You can find more Cold Soups here and here. Or browse all of our Summer recipes here and here.

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Chilled Beetroot Soup

The colour of this soup is enough to bring joy to the heart.

A glorious and colourful start to a meal. Royal red beetroot transformed into a soup. I had fennel flowers sitting on the kitchen bench so these went into the soup as well, with some plain yoghurt.

Feel free to browse our Beetroot recipes here and here. Or you might like to browse Cold Soup recipes here and here. Check out our easy Summer recipes here and here.

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Quick Tomato and Cucumber Cold Soup

Cucumber is so cooling in these hot months. With tomato it is even better. This soup is gorgeous. Not quite gazpacho, it is definitely similar. Best eaten chilled, it can have yoghurt stirred through. We first made it in 1998 – that sounds so very long ago. But it has stood the test of time, and as soon as hot weather hits, we make it again.

Our preference is to use tomato purees, pastes or sauces from our freezer – we made them in Autumn to get us through the Winter and Spring months until good tomatoes hit the green grocer shelves again. But it can be made by juicing tomatoes, or even with a can of tomato soup if you are desperate (don’t ever mention that I said that – we usually don’t promote processed foods!)

It is a filling yet cooling hot weather soup.

You might also like our Cucumber recipes here and here. Or you might like to browse Cold Soup recipes here and here. Check out our easy Summer recipes here and here.

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Creamy Tomato Soup with Lemongrass and Ginger

This soup is a little bit Indian, a little bit S. E. Asian, a little bit English, and very divine.

A soup that has stood the test of time. Fragrant and beautifully flavoured, it is treasured still by my family. It is a little bit Indian, a little bit S. E. Asian, a little bit English, it is divine. It is light enough to have in Summer and Autumn.

You might also like our Tomato Soup recipes here and here. Indian Soups are here. Or browse Tomato recipes here and here. Check out our easy Autumn recipes here and here.

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Fantastic Avocado and Celery Cold Soup

Perfect for our 40C Summers

Back from a hot weather week of family, food and fun, one of the outstanding dishes we concocted was an amazing cold blender soup with celery and avocado. Very more’ish, it takes a few minutes to make. It can be eaten either at room temperature or chilled for a perfect start to a meal on a hot hot day. Perfect for our 40C degree summers.

We have another Cold Avocado Soup here, it is wonderful too. Browse our other Cold Soups here and here, our Avocado dishes here and here, and our Celery recipes here and here.

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Mung Dal with Cumin and Spinach

The marvellous flavours of Mung and Spinach.

Mung is a favourite dal of many people with its sweet, creamy, mushiness. A good mung dal cooked at home is worth a hundred restaurant visits. This recipe features Spinach as well.

Are you looking for mung recipes? There are more here. Or browse our Dals here and here.  We recommend Mung Dal with Ghee, Gentle Golden Mung Dal and ISKON Mung Dal. You might like our Spinach recipes here and here, or browse our Autumn collection here and here.

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Roasted Capsicum, Tomato and Peanut Soup with Chipotle

A wonderful, smoky flavoured soup.

A dear friend was experiencing tough times, but he made this wonderful Autumnal Soup as one of his first experiments with cooking solo again! It was an instant success and did the rounds of many friends.

Browse some of our other Soup Recipes here and here, Capsicum Recipes here and here, or Tomato recipes here and here.

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Italian Farmhouse Barley and Vegetable Soup | Zuppa di Orzo

A creamy and hearty soup for mid to late Winter, even into the cold of Spring

In October, 2001, I shifted back to cold Adelaide from temperate Sydney, and the cold weather was a shock! It had me craving soups. In Sydney I was not so keen on the more traditional English and heavy European food any longer – I had turned towards more Indian, Asian and Spicy food. However, coming back into the cold in Adelaide from warm Sydney made me hunger for hearty food – pasties, puddings and soups. How much heartier can you get than Barley Soup?

This really  is a hearty soup, made with caramelised vegetables that come together with the barley (some whole and some pureed) to make a great, Italian soup. Beautifully creamy, it is a delight for cold nights and wet weekends.

If you have been preserving and freezing foods in Autumn for Winter, this is a time to use chillies, garlic and tomatoes from your freezer. It makes it sooo easy.

It can be a tad confusing, as orzo in Italian is barley while in Greek it is rice shaped pasta. For this recipe, we are definitely using barley.

You might also like our Soup recipes here and here. We have a few Barley Recipes which will be published in the coming months. Our Italian recipes are here and here. Check out our easy Winter recipes here and here. And feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series.

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13 Treasure Happiness Soup | Provencale Vegetable Soup

An Extraordinary Soup

This soup is SO delicious – and makes everyone so happy when they eat it. The name comes from the 13 vegetables in the soup, and that wonderful warm, happiness feeling, but really it is from Provence in France. There it is a summer soup, but the addition here of potatoes, pumpkin and sweet potato gives it that wonderful warmth for winter and early spring, and introduces truly wonderful textural combinations in every mouthful.

My parents believe firmly that vegetables are the path to health, and so a normal meal at their place may consist of many vegetables. The record number of veggies at this time is 12, yes TWELVE, at once on a plate. But with this recipe, I think that I claim the prize. Thirteen in one sitting. Not bad.

Browse all of our Soup recipes here and here. Or explore the French recipes here and here. Be inspired by our Winter recipes here and here.

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A Light Summery Tomato Soup | Indian Tomato and Potato Soup

Take this soup on summer picnics.

A gorgeously summery tomato soup that is perfect for Autumn too. Good tomatoes are generally available from Early Summer to Mid Autumn, and light soups suitable for the weather are wonderful.

This is an Indian soup. As I understand it, soups are more recent additions to South Indian cuisine, probably as a result of the British dominance. Not a rasam, generally not spicy, they are nevertheless flavoursome. On one trip to Kerala we got into the habit of having soup after our meal, sitting outside and chatting the evening away.

Madhur Jaffrey also does a wonderful tomato soup in one of her books – full of lemongrass and Indian spices and it is a real keeper. Explore some other tomato soup recipes and here. Or browse our summery salads here and here. Our Indian recipes are here and here.

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Simple Indian Dal Soup

A nourishing soup for a cooler night

“Soups” are an interesting concept in South India. Soups do exist, although I suspect they are a relatively modern concept influenced by the British occupation. Contrasted with this are many soupy South Indian dishes like rasam, sambar, kuzhambu, kootu, dals etc that are not soups as we understand them, yet appear to be soup-like to non-Indian eyes.

Recently in India I was eating at a large canteen. The food was great. One counter in the canteen offered us small bowls of liquid. I asked Rasam? No, he said, Soup. I thought I did not understand his accent. Rasam? I asked again. Soup he said again. Ok, soup.

They were generally thin stocks without vegetables, but perhaps with a little body from undetectable lentils. Not as thin as a broth, not as thick as, say, a creamed soup. Highly delicious, and we often had 2 or 3 small bowls of it at the end of our meal, as we sat outside reviewing the day’s activities. In the cool of the evening, after a hot hot day, it was delicious.

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A Indian-Rasam Style Spicy Tomato and Dal Soup

Ingredients from the freezer – Lunch is prepared in 15 minutes.

Every county has the concept of fusion cooking. Close to country borders, techniques, ingredients and dishes from neighbouring countries are adopted. Food fashion makes dishes from a different country popular and elements of their cuisine are adopted nationally. A great example is the initial influx of Chinese style food into Australia. No-one from China would have recognised the popular Chinese food – it was a fusion of Chinese techniques and tastes adapted for Australian preferences. The story repeats for the introduction of Italian, Greek, SE Asian, Vietnamese etc food, and the same process is repeated around the world. The food is always adapted for the strong preferences of the local population.

In this household we have tastebuds attuned at least a little to Italian, French and South East Asian flavours, not to mention the Australian preferences for flavour combinations. So sometimes I play with my beloved Indian flavours to create a dish close to but just not quite traditionally Indian.

Feel free to browse our Rasam recipes here and here.  Or you might be interested in our Indian recipes here and here. We have a number of tomato soup recipes here and here. Or get inspiration from our Summer dishes here and here.

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Tulasi Rasam | Spicy Indian Broth flavoured with Indian Holy Basil

Rasam, a spicy Indian broth, made with Indian Holy Basil.

A Tulasi plant was recently gifted to me and I have been enjoying an abundance of Tulasi teas. But Tulasi can also be included in Rasam, and it makes a very special dish.

You can read more about the extraordinary healthy properties of Tulasi here.  Tulasi can also be spelt as Tulsi or Thulasi, or called Holy Basil. Don’t get it confused with Thai or Sth East Asian Holy Basil, it is an Indian Holy Basil and quite different to the Thai herb. Our Tulasi recipes are here.

You might like to read about the difference between Rasam and Sambar. And find out how to make a rasam powder. Are you looking for other rasam recipes? Try here and here for tomato rasam, garlic rasam, lemon rasam, parappu rasam and others. All of our Indian recipes are here and here. And find inspiration in our Summer recipes here and here.

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Tomato Rasam

A oft-made rasam, the favourite rasam of many people.

Like a warming, comforting cup of spicy deliciousness, rasam is such special dish. It is no wonder it is a daily item in many Tamil households.

One of the most common rasams is tomato rasam. Full of spice, tangy from tamarind, and made with home grown organic tomatoes, it is not only delicious but healthy also.

We like to make rasams with the top water from cooking lentils – it adds flavour, uses the water that is usually drained off, and if some of the soft lentils actually get into the rasam, it just adds more flavour and a little texture.

I often keep home made tomato pulp and tomato juice in the freezer – even frozen whole tomatoes. These are perfect for making rasam.

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