I'm missing the holidays... aren't you? It's freezing cold, we've had snow, we've had it so cold that the trees and ground remained in a permanent state of winter wonderland, now the grey, damp weather has arrived. The sort that makes all your joints sing that they're getting old. I still love it. The wood burning stove giving that gentle warmth that doesn't dry your skin out like the central heating does and what better way to warm up than with a bowl of spicy roast parnsip soup.
I made the best version of this soup over the holidays as I had a glut of parsnips. When the children were tiny in our old house, they used to sit in those stroller things and whizz round the house, sore ankles if they knocked in to you. I used to love it when the organic veg box turned up, because I never bothered to look up what would be coming it was always a surprise, a bit like Christmas morning. The boys would scoot up to the box and start pulling everything out "What iz der? What got we?" This Christmas Eve the organic veg box really was just like Christmas, possibly because it was Christmas I know, but you get my point. The doorbell rang late afternoon, just as we were heading to a party for a couple of hours. I answered to this very jolly and I have to say good looking guy who handed me a box. A box stuffed full of organic fruit and vegetables, a great Christmas gift from Abel & Cole.
I like a lot of things about Abel & Cole but the thing I like best - the delivery guys, they're always happy and helpful. Now either they get great training. I used to be a training manager so I can normally tell when someone has had good training OR - they're on something... Either way, it works...
Healthy Low Fat Spicy Roast Parsnip Soup - could feed 4
4 good sized parsnips
1 or 2 onions
1 large potato
A really good pinch of each - ground cumin, ground coriander, ground ginger, hot smoked paprika, (a little chilli powder if you like your food hot).
500-750ml skimmed milk
750ml of stock - (vegetable or chicken)
Pre-heat the oven to about 180-200C. Wash, scrub and chop (into rough 2cm cubes) the parsnips and potato. (If the skin is not at it's best then peel them). Peel and chop the onion. Place in a roasting tray and lightly spray with olive oil. Mix all the spices together and then sprinkle over the vegetables. Cook in the oven for about 40 minutes, until the vegetables have some colour. At this point you could let the vegetables cool and make the soup at a later time. Put the veg in a pan, pour over the stock and then blitz with a stick blender. Then start to add the milk, depending on how thick you like your soup. Heat through and serve. Lovely with spring/salad onion on the top though obviously they're not in season right now!!
When I just checked the Abel & Cole site for a link I saw that they're doing a paperback version of the Abel & Cole cookbook at the reduced price of £5.00. It's a good book, I like it - a lot, and for a fiver, you can't really go wrong.