weekly food (w/c 5 November)

I made three different things this week and all were good.

However, please to note that the Barley Hoppin’ John tastes like feet if you eat it cold, so don’t do that. Might be the thyme? I don’t know. 

Roasted pear-butternut soup with stilton

  • 2 ripe pears, peeled, quartered and cored
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 2 medium tomatoes, cored and quartered
  • 1 large leek, pale green and white parts only, halved lengthwise, sliced and washed thoroughly
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 cups vegetable broth, or reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • 2/3 cup crumbled Stilton, or other blue-veined cheese
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh chives, or scallion greens
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Combine pears, squash, tomatoes, leek, garlic, oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper in a large bowl; toss to coat. Spread evenly on a large rimmed baking sheet. Roast, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 40 to 55 minutes. Let cool slightly.
  3. Place half the vegetables and 2 cups broth in a blender; puree until smooth. Transfer to a large saucepan. Puree the remaining vegetables and 2 cups broth. Add to the pan and stir in the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  4. Cook the soup over medium-low heat, stirring, until hot, about 10 minutes. Divide among 6 bowls and garnish with cheese and chives (or scallion greens).

Barley Hoppin’ John

Note: I cooked my barley in a crockpot because it wasn’t quick-cook barley and that was fine – probably 2-3 hours on high.

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 14-ounce can vegetable broth
  • 1 cup quick-cooking barley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 15-ounce cans black-eyed peas, rinsed

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper and celery. Cook until the vegetables soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add broth, barley, thyme, lemon juice, crushed red pepper and salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the barley is done, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in black-eyed peas. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Serve hot. (Seriously, serve hot.)

Spicy vegetable soup

Note: I used butternut squash because, hey, more squash. That and courgettes are not in season, etc.

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1-3 teaspoons hot paprika, or to taste
  • 2 14-ounce cans vegetable broth
  • 4 medium plum tomatoes, diced
  • 1 medium yellow summer squash, diced
  • 2 cups diced cooked potatoes, (see Ingredient note)
  • 1 1/2 cups green beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups frozen spinach, (5 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, or red-wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, or prepared pesto

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, about 6 minutes. Add paprika and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add broth, tomatoes, squash, potatoes and beans; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender, about 12 minutes. Stir in spinach and vinegar; continue cooking until heated through, 2 to 4 minutes more. Ladle soup into bowls and top with fresh basil or a dollop of pesto. (The pesto addition is pretty nice.)

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One response to “weekly food (w/c 5 November)

  1. Look at you and your britishness… courgettes indeed. I am intrigued by the first recipe, though would have to sub in a different cheese, I hate blue cheese.

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