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We are having some venison casserole this evening, left over from a WI event, with frozen green beans and mash, and there is an apple crumble in the Remoska for later, using our autumn apples from the freezer.
When I did the demo last week, I did a soup that we have often. The original recipe came from Feasts From The Place Below, Amazon currently selling 2nd hand copies for £2.19. It is a vegetarian cookbook (which Amazon tells me I bought in 2001!) and is set out in seasons. Each season has several unusual and delicious recipes, their Valentines menu suggestions include Chicory & Butternut Squash Pancakes with a Gruyere and White Wine Sauce. I have done those, and they are as delicious as they sound.
For 4 servings, you will need
30ml oil, Asda £1.50/1 litre, 5p
250g onions, chopped, Asda SP 98p/2kg, 12p
360g sweet potato, peeled and chopped, Asda £1.31/kg, 47p
2 cloves of garlic or equivalent, 5p
tsp paprika 1p?
salt & black pepper
170g red lentils, 20p/100g, 34p
a little chilli, optional
1.2 litres hot water
tbsp balsamic vinegar, about 5p
Sweat the onions and potato until soft. Add the garlic, paprika and chilli if using, and sweat a little longer.
Add the hot water and red lentils and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the lentils are soft.
Add the vinegar, any cheap one will do, and whizz until smooth.
Season with salt and black pepper
I haven’t tried it, but you could probably use malt vinegar here, just try a tiny bit at first, a tsp, don’t want to ruin the soup. The soup is fine without the vinegar, but it does definitely bring another layer of flavour.
If you don’t have any paprika, don’t worry, you won’t notice it that much.
I have priced the lentils at the 500g bag level, if you can afford to get bigger bags from Indian suppliers, or some supermarkets (Morrisons seems to have them) they are half the price
I have said to use hot water in the recipe. This is not because it makes any difference to the recipe, it doesn’t, it is just because it is cheaper to boil the water in the kettle than on the stove top.
You can of course make this in a slow cooker.
The original recipe uses a massive 100ml of olive oil to get a velvety richness. I don’t like to use that much oil, and don’t honestly think that you can taste that it is olive oil, although you might if you use 100ml! so I use ordinary vegetable oil, and a lot less of it. The original also makes a HUGE bucket of soup, so I have adjusted the quantities to 4 servings. Other than that, the recipe is the same.