Tag Archives: kale

Watercress soup – healthy, sexy, green

11 Jan

S1031896

This soup is a bit of a treat, as it takes one whole bag of watercress to make just one bowl. It tastes fresh and peppery and is full of vitamins and minerals, so it will make you feel incredible. I’m not exaggerating, it’s been over an hour since I ate the bowl of soup in the photo above and I’m still on a bit of a high. Either make it as an indulgent lunch for one, or serve it in little teacups as a starter for someone you’re trying to woo.

Notes:

  • The same quantities and method work for other green soups. Just replace the watercress with spinach or kale for a more everyday soup.
  • A small onion/potato/carrot is one you can fit in the palm of your hand and close your fist around.
  • Don’t bother peeling the potato and carrot unless they’re really muddy or have been nibbled by bugs. Just give them a good scrub.

S1031892

Recipe (serves one as a meal, or two as a starter):

  • One teaspoon oil
  • One small onion, diced into roughly 1cm cubes
  • One small potato, diced into roughly 1cm cubes
  • One small carrot, diced into roughly 1cm cubes
  • One clove of garlic, smashed, peeled, then roughly chopped
  • 300ml vegetable stock
  • 75g fresh watercress
  • Salt and pepper to taste (you shouldn’t need very much of either)

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over a low-medium heat. Add the onion, potato, carrot, and garlic. Cover and leave to sweat for 10 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally. A little bit of colour is fine, but you don’t really want the veggies to brown.

Add the stock and simmer, covered, for another 10 minutes. Add the watercress a handful at a time until it has all wilted into the broth – this should only take a minute or two. Blend, check for seasoning, and serve.

Advertisements

In my veg box this week – mushrooms, kale, corn

24 Sep

I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since I last wrote about my veg box. I’ve not been slacking, we had to cancel a few weeks of deliveries, at first because I had so much home-grown produce from my Mum’s allotment, and then because Mr Veg and I went on holiday to Italy. We had such a fab time in Italy, and of course ate some gorgeous food, but I’ll tell you all about that another day.

This week we have:

Mushrooms
We get a bag of mushrooms most weeks. It’s a bit strange, they’re really good mushrooms but we only get a really tiny amount of them – about 100g. It’s not really enough to make them the star of a dish. What will I do with them? This might sound a bit odd, but it depends on whether or not Mr Veg likes mushrooms at the moment or not (he has a bit of a love/hate thing for fungi). If he does like them then great, I’ll use them to enhance an unadventurous dish like spaghetti bolognese, stir-fry, or a vegetable pilaf. Otherwise, I might just be having mushrooms on toast tomorrow, one of my favourite breakfasts.

Kale
I was really really hoping to get some kale this week, so I was thrilled that it was the first thing I saw when I opened the box. The butternut squash my Mum gave me a few weeks ago is almost ripe now, I’ve thought of two ideas of what to do with it and both involve kale. I like the idea of combining sweet, rich, soft squash with green, earthy, crunchy kale. Whichever idea I go with will probably end up on the blog, so keep an eye out.

Corn on the cobs
Wow, these are the first (possibly only) fresh corn I’ve had all summer. I’m definitely having them tonight – sweetcorn is one of those vegetables that gradually gets less sweet, so time is of the essence. I’m not going to do anything fancy, just boil them and slather them with a bit of hot sauce.

Also received this week: bananas, plums, apples, grapes, a lemon, a red pepper, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, onions.

“In my veg box this week…” is not intended as a product review, simply a description of some of the fruit and vegetables that are in season and what I like to do with them. I pay full price for my vegetable box and have no affiliation with the company that delivers them or any of their suppliers.

In my veg box this week – spinach vs. kale, and coping with bananas

19 Mar

Spring is on its way and we’re finally starting to get more variety again. This week we have:

Double greens!
A massive bag of spinach and an equally huge bunch of Tuscan kale, AKA cavolo nero. I’m so excited to get two big bunches of greens because I absolutely love both. Greens are great for iron, calcium, and tonnes of vitamins, although apparently these are more bioavailable in kale than spinach. Kale is really versatile and goes really well with chilli and other spices (always a plus in my book), and has a much more satisfying bite to it. Spinach works better cooked down, squeezed out, then chopped and put in a pasta sauce, or curry, or pie filling (like a spinach quiche). I’m thinking in this case of making either spinach and tofu-ricotta pasta, or a bright green soup. Which do I prefer out of kale and spinach? For me, thanks to the texture and health advantages, kale wins (but only just).

Bananas
I love bananas, they’re my favourite portable snack, are full of potassium and fibre, and are one of the best hangover cures I know. I know I’m not alone in being a bit squeamish about overripe bananas, though. Luckily, one of the advantages of volunteering for FoodCycle is that it is curing me of this through exposure therapy. We tend to get a lot of bananas at varying stages of ripeness, from perfectly edible to black and mushy. Last Saturday I was given two bowls of frozen then partially thawed bananas to turn into ice cream. It is an awful lot of work if you don’t have a blender, but frozen bananas mashed with yoghurt and syrup make brilliant, healthy yet decadent ice cream.

Also received this week: satsumas, apples, pears, beetroot, sweet potato, carrots, onions, potatoes, mushrooms.

In my veg box this week – kale, squash, blood oranges

29 Jan

This week we have:

Kale
Very popular with vegans, thanks to its high levels of iron and calcium (amongst other vitamins and minerals). I love it stir-fried with a little chilli and garlic, maybe drizzled with a bit of tahini dressing. I also love this kale pesto recipe from low-cost recipe blogger and food poverty hero Jack Monroe (please check out her website at http://agirlcalledjack.com/). I replace the cheese with cashew nuts and a shake of nutritional yeast flakes.

Squash
I’m really happy, squash is my favourite vegetable and I’ve been getting a lot of them lately. One of the fun things about getting a vegetable box is the variety of veggies we get. We have had three squashes already this year but they’ve been completely different. This week’s squash is a pale-coloured round squash called a Blue Hubbard. I’m not a squash expert, I’ve just found a really useful website for identifying squash. I think this squash is destined for a stuffing, either with quinoa and vegetables or with spicy polenta and sweetcorn, similar to my stuffed pepper recipe.

Blood oranges
From the outside they look like a regular orange, but on the inside the flesh is somewhere on the orange-red-purple-black spectrum.  It was a bit of a shock the first time but I love them. The more colourful a fruit or vegetable is, the more phytochemicals and antioxidants it contains. Yes, it might stain your clothes if you spill any, but it will stain your insides too and that’s really good for you!

Also received this week: apples, kiwis, pears, a green pepper, a swede, some rather large parsnips, potatoes, carrots, onions.

%d bloggers like this: