Spiced Roasted Roots Soup with Chickpea Croutons

I just made this soup today, and it was so nice that we ate it all straight away!  So I thought I’d share the recipe.  I hadn’t made soup in a while, but it’s getting colder here now, so felt like a good day for it.  The spices and coconut milk make it really nice and comforting and warming for autumn time, and the chickpea croutons make it more filling and nourishing.

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Curried Butternut Squash Soup

It’s been pretty cold here in Ireland and we have no heating for a few days so have been cuddled up in front of the fire most of the time.  I thought I’d roast loads of veggies to have for a few days because the oven would help heat up the house!  And I wanted to make soup to warm us up even more, so this soup was invented.  It’s so creamy, comforting and spicy, so was perfect.  It made loads too to get us through a few days and the kids loved it.  It’s really healthy and delicious.

I used Kallo very low salt vegetable stock cubes and don’t add salt until after taking out the kids’ portions.  You could also make it using pumpkin instead of butternut squash and garnish it with a few roasted pumpkin seeds.

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Ingredients:

2 butternut squashes (or small pumpkins)

Sea salt and black pepper

Extra virgin olive oil

1 large onion

1 clove of garlic

5cm fresh ginger

1 tin of coconut milk

1 heaped tbsp. medium curry powder

500ml vegetable stock

Chilli flakes to garnish (optional)

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How it’s made:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Half the squashes lengthways and remove the seeds.  Place cut-side up on a baking tray.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with 2 tbsp. olive oil.  Roast on the bottom shelf in the oven for about 1 hour or until soft.

When the squash is ready, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat.  Dice the onion and fry for about 5 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally.

Mince or crush the garlic, peel and grate the ginger, add to the saucepan and fry for a few more minutes.

Add the coconut milk, curry powder and vegetable stock.  Simmer for a few minutes.

Scoop the flesh of the butternut squashes out and add it to the pan.  Blend until smooth and return to the heat.

Simmer the soup for about five minutes or until it has the desired consistency.

Garnish with chilli flakes and season with salt and pepper (optional).

Sweet Potato, Red Lentil and Coconut Milk Soup

There’s nothing nicer than a big bowl of soup when you’re sick.  My kids are hardly ever sick, but they picked up a cold a few days ago when we took them to the GP for a routine appointment.  It doesn’t seem to bother them too much, but Oran is feeding less since his nose is a bit blocked.  I wanted to make sure that they still get loads of nourishment to help fight it off, so this soup is great.  Sweet potatoes are really nutritious, and it has red lentils for protein and coconut milk for healthy fats.  It also has ginger and chilli, which are meant to be good for colds.

It’s sweet and creamy with a subtle spiciness and lovely flavours of ginger and fresh coriander.  It’s also quite filling with the lentils.  I leave the sweet potato skin on since you don’t even notice it when it’s all blended up and it adds extra fibre.  I use Kallo very low salt vegetable stock cubes, and after taking the kids’ portions out, add salt to the grown ups’ portions.

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Ingredients:

3 shallots

2 cloves of garlic

A dash of chilli flakes

A thumb sized piece of ginger

2 large sweet potatoes (about 1kg)

1 cup of red lentils

1 litre vegetable stock

1 tin of coconut milk

A handful of fresh coriander leaf (cilantro) plus more for garnishing

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How it’s made:

Peel and finely chop the shallots.  Fry in a large saucepan in a little extra virgin olive oil over a medium heat for a few minutes.

Peel and crush or finely chop the garlic and add to the sauce pan.  Peel and grate the ginger and add the ginger and chilli to the sauce pan.  Fry for a few more minutes, stirring occasionally.

Clean and chop the sweet potato into large cubes.  No need to peel it unless you want to.

Add the red lentils and vegetable stock.  Bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for about 15-20 minutes until the sweet potato and lentils are cooked.

Finely chop the coriander, and add to the saucepan with the coconut milk.

Remove from the heat and blend until smooth.  A stick blender/hand blender is the easiest way to do this.

Serve garnished with a bit of fresh coriander.

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Roasted Red Pepper and Chickpea Soup

This soup has so much flavour and is a beautiful rich colour.  It’s really delicious and warming.  Red peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C.  The chickpeas make it a bit thicker, more filling and add protein.  You can eat it smooth or, as I like to, add a few roasted chickpeas after blending to give it texture and a nice crunch.  I like it made with the chilli flakes  to make it a little spicy but you can leave them out if you like.  Roasting the peppers and slowly frying the shallots makes it taste really sweet and both my kids loved it!  It’s lovely served on its own or with some bread for dunking.  My 7 month old had some bread cut into fingers and dunked in the soup once it had cooled a little.

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Ingredients:

4 red bell peppers

Extra virgin olive oil

1 cup of cooked chickpeas (optional)

3 shallots

2 cloves of garlic

A dash of chilli flakes (optional)

1 litre vegetable stock (can use low salt version for kids and add more salt to adult portions, I use Kallo very low salt vegetable stock cubes)

1/2 a cup of cooked chickpeas

Fresh coriander leaf (cilantro)

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How it’s made:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Deseed the peppers and cut them in half.  Arrange them on a baking tray, skin side down.  Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

If doing the roasted chickpeas, put 1 cup of cooked chickpeas on a baking tray, drizzle with a little olive oil and roast in the oven with the red peppers.

Meanwhile, heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan over a low heat.  Peel and dice the shallots.  Peel and slice the garlic.  Add the chilli flakes.  Add to the saucepan, and fry gently on a very heat while the peppers roast, stirring occasionally.

When the peppers are done, take them out of the oven and chop them roughly.

Add the red peppers and 1/2 cup of cooked chickpeas (not the roasted ones) to the saucepan, just cover with vegetable stock, and bring to the boil.

Remove from the heat, and using a hand blender or normal blender, blend the soup until smooth.

If you are adding the roasted chickpeas, then mix them in now after blending.  Check the seasoning and add salt or pepper if desired.

Serve the soup with a little coriander leaf on top.

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