Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Soups

"This week, I'll be cooking mainly soups." the blogger announced.
"Why soups, Helen?!" they cried, most interestedly.
"Well, I shall tell you!" said she.

Autumn has reached us good and proper; the leaves have turned golden and scatter the landscape. The clocks went back an hour, the trees sway in the strong wind and the rain lashes down, reflections seen in puddles lit up by the orange glow of a street light as we hurry by. This is all we need to prompt us Scots to use one of the hundreds of ways we have to describe the weather, in particular, the rain:
"It's awfy dreicht!" cry some.
"It's pishin' doon!" cry others.
"Awa' and bile yer heid; it's only a smirr".

Translation:
It's rather wet and dismal, don't you think?
I rather think it's a bit more like a downpour myself.
Away and boil your heads, you pair, it's only a light rainfall.


The temperature has dropped, the woolies are oot, it's time for something warm and it's name is soup.! I love soup season; the parsnips get crisped and the pumpkins get roasted, haddock gets smoked and shallots get toasted. Gruyere is grated and bacon is fried and second helpings are never denied.

This weeks shopping came to just under £50. The menu this week is as follows:
Roasted Pumpkin Soup with melting cheese and croutons
Curried Parsnip & Apple soup with Parsnip Crisps
Indian Chicken Stew
French Onion Soup with gruyere croutons
Cullen Skink (fish soup)
Stovies (sausage and potato soup...!)
Omelettes (not a soup)
Chicken Bites & Baked Potatoes
Tuna Pasta
Bacon, eggs and beans

Scones
Welshcakes
Brown Bread
Toasted Baguettes
Pancakes

______________________________
Poor wee Kelly was sent home from school last week and had to stay off for yet another few days; illness is trying to consume us but we've been fighting it and it's nearly gone. To cheer the wee lass up, I made her...
Helen's Incredibly Delicious You May Just Die But It Will Be Worth It Hot Chocolate.


Do not underestimate the healing power of such things; tis magical!

How to make Helen's Hottie Hot Hottie (for short)
In the bottom of a cup, add two heaped teaspoons of grated chocolate/Green & Black's Organic Hot Chocolate/ Belgian Hot Chocolate flakes or a mixture of all of the above (or similar-as long as it's proper chocolate) and (this is very important; I'm revealing my secret ingredient so shhh, tell no-one) a heaped spoonful of Nutella! Yup. You heard me right.

Add a little cold milk, stir to make a paste and heat up in the microwave; feel free to do this in a pan of course. Once it heats up-check every 10 seconds in the microwave-and the chocolate is melted, stir vigorously adding more milk at the same time. Fill the cup 3/4 to the top and add a little sugar if the chocolate you use requires some. Re-heat. Stir well.

Plop a small handful of mini marshmallows into mug and top that with scootie cream, i.e. cream from a can! Dot the cream with marshmallows and grate/sprinkle over some of the chocolate. Serve with a long spoon and give to little child/adult/granny and watch that smile wash all over their face. It'll warm the cockles of any heart.

From Last Week....



Lemon roast chicken sprinkled with olive oil, thyme and salt. Half way through cooking, add potatoes and 15 minutes later, add an onion, quartered or chopped, carrots, peppers and any other root veg. Add stuffing balls near the end, depending on how much time they need to cook and crisp up and I sprinkled over some couscous to soak up the gravy. Lovely.


See that chicken? Yes, that one up there. It was picked clean and shoved into a bowl with the remaining stuffing, veg, gravy and couscous. Then tonight, I emptied it into an oven proof pie dish, added puff pastry and served it with broccoli and green beans. Doesn't exactly look pretty but tasted great.


Ugly cookies, eh? The kids loved them though. I used a basic cookie recipe and added 100g of breakfast cereal; any cereal to your taste would do. I added some Nutella and a white chocolate button. It's not all about appearances although I do agree it helps but the kids wolfed these down as an extra special breakfast treat at the weekend.


Onion Bhajis; very similar to the pakora recipe except without the spinach and with a mix of white onion and red onion plus a bunch of coriander. Served it with the pakora sauce and rice.



I went to Anne's for a wee soiree on Thursday night and a visit to another house for a little reunion party on Friday. To Anne's, I brought some of these basic little breads rolled small with goats cheese, herbs, tomatoes and Parmesan on top.


I also brought little quichelets; recipe to follow....


...and mini peanut butter bites. I made them with marg instead of butter though; nice but not quite the same. I also brought these to the reunion as well as some tikka bites which I didn't get a photo of.


47 comments:

Lee the Hot Flash Queen said...

I can't wait for the pumpkin soup!!

mise said...

"What an entertaining post this was!", commented the commentator enthusiastically. "My in-laws are always talking about wee tickie tickies and now I see there's more of that sort of talk where that came from. Even those soups appear tempting."

Unknown Mami said...

Thank you for the translation! I was lost.

I must never ever read your blog when hungry.

Anna said...

hahaha i LOVE the translation. i hope you all are enjoying your fall. its been extra perfect this year for us!

xo-

gaelikaa said...

I could murder a bowl of soup now!

Melissa B. said...

Wow...Where do I start? SITS sent me by, and I'm glad they did!

Witch Princess Are You?

Fruitful Vine2 said...

Delicious eats.

Judy Harper said...

I just ate lunch, but after reading your post, I'm hungry again! I'm definitely going to try the Hottie Hot Hottie, even if I'm not feeling sick. It's chilly outside, which is a good enough reason!

Claire said...

Well done for getting the shopping for under £50! god knows how you manage it, it always costs me loads for 3 of us

Little Ms Blogger said...

You have to post the pumpkin soup and wonder if a butternut squash would work.

I love this time of year - Sundays are soup/stew and bread day.

Nutella in the hot chocolate sounds awesome! I will have to try out on hubby.

Mama Zen said...

I want that hot chocolate!

confused homemaker said...

I adore soup, I could eat buckets of soup. I think it's perfect for Fall. I also love that hot chocolate. You could have just said hot cocoa or nutella & I would have been.

Roasted chicken is also a big thing for the weekend at our house.

angelcel said...

I love the oh so proper translations of the Scottish original, 'specially the one for "It's pishin' doon!" :)

I always feel peckish when I've visited your site and that hot chocolate looks heavenly. No wonder Kelly is smiling. :)

He Who Laughs Last said...

ok..so you checked out my blog...now I'm checking out yours and well...ummm...I'm never leaving! In fact, I am checking on flights right now...I can be at your place for dinner on Friday...

Helen McGinn said...

*LOL* Everyone welcome at mine's for tea! x

The Vintage Kitten said...

Im still waiting for my invite for tea (and hot chocolate). My invite must be stuck in the postal strike! HINT HINT!!!! X

ER said...

Now that i've wiped the drool off the keys...Well, so much for my diet! I've put on a stone just reading your blog. Delightful and delicious! Lizzy :)

MrsOrtelle said...

Nutella in hot chocolate! GENIOUS! I seriously should've waited until tomorrow to read these posts - all I want is food and sweets before bed! ;)

Mary-Jane said...

Now I feel bad for getting takeout..

Its summer here in Australia, but I will be sure to check out your oup recipes in time for winter!

cat said...

The soup sounds fine, the cookies looks stunning, but that hot chocolate has me craving. Nutella - the food of the gods.

Herself said...

No one can describe rotten weather like the Scots!

JDaniel4's Mom said...

Everything looks wonderful!

Karen & Gerard Zemek said...

Oh, the calories! Looks just delicious, even those big huge ugly cookies! I'm not one bit surprised the kids loved them.

So nice of you to make the lass hot chocolate--I'm sure that would help her feel better. At least it made her smile!

Congrats on your SITS day!

Elizabeth a.k.a. Type A Mommy said...

Oh my gosh, your hot hot chocolate sounds divine! And I love Nutella, it's the best invention ever!!

Joy said...

Those "ugly" cookies looked pretty yummy to me!

Congrats on your SITS day!

Melissa @ Cellulite Investigation said...

Those onion bahjis are for me, right?

Mrsbear said...

Nutella in your hot chocolate, I would've never thought of it. Sounds great though.

I love soups too.

Judy said...

Wow! Yumilicious!

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

You are so creative with your food ideas. I am inspired. Thanks.

jackiefo said...

I have been thinking about making bread for awhile now - you have FINALLY convinced me... Can't wait to start baking this weekend :) I enjoy your blog - you are a great writer and are very witty!

Serendipity said...

That hot chocolate sounds delicious!

Tsquared417 said...

It all looks so good!!! and your kids are adorable!

Angelia Sims said...

You are an amazing cook! Happy SITS day! I just got enough food flashes to last a week and I love me some good hot chocolate!

Lacie @ Creative Attempts said...

wow how do you get all of that done? I have just one child and I am lucky if I have time to brush my teeth :) Your blog is a blast and I think you are amazing

The Local Cook said...

looks deee-licious!

Natalie at Mommy on Fire said...

My husband has always wanted to travel to Scotland...Now I do too...

YUM!

Going to make this hot chocolate tonight - Nutella!? Love it and never thought to put it in hot chocolate. Thanks!

Apryl said...

Everything you make looks delicious! Hopping by from SITS and loving reading your blog!

Jenn Erickson said...

Oh Helen, my mouth is watering! Everything sounds divine! I'm intrigued by the parsnip soup. Your hot chocolate does indeed sound like the best ever. You positively do not skimp on quality ~ using the finest ingredients, plus a lot of love and creativity. My girls are huge fans of nutella, and as the weather here has been cold, windy, and rainy, we've been doing a lot of hot cocoa. Perhaps after school, I'll give the ol' Nutella a try. I absolutely love the way you share the tongue of homeland ~ and your clever translations too.

Jessica said...

I want to subscribe to your blog, but it just makes me want to eat. All those soups sound amazing. I am in Southern California and we are getting our worst rain in forever right now so soup is about the only thing that sounds good.

Andrea said...

Yeah, Nutella is like the best invention ever! Love it!
Happy SITS day!

~Melody @ 6 Feet Over~ said...

OK, I'm pretty sure the only thing I'll be able to think about is Helen's Hottie Hot Hottie ... YUM!

Everything looks simply DIVINE!

Happy SITS day!

~melody~

Katrina said...

Lovely post - your cooking looks delicious!

Laura said...

Oh my. I am going to have to always scroll quickly by your photos. They make the results of my kitchen seem so dismal.
I would like to come and stay at your house next time I am feeling ill so I can have some of that hot chocolate.

MommyToTwoBoys said...

This post is killing me! For three and a half weeks all I have eaten is Jenny Craig (diet) food. The cookies are especially making my mouth water and my tummy growl. Guess I'll go make some tea to stave off the hunger you started...

mom2kmjx2 said...

I am going to try the Hot chocolate and chicken after my surgery. sounds yummy.

Mommie Daze said...

Yum! I want to try your Hottie Hot Hottie. I'm visiting from SITS and I love your blog! Nice to meet you.

Heidi said...

That chicken looks so good and the pumpkin soup sounds delicious, I am hoping you have shared the recipe. Now I am hungry!