Friday, 9 January 2015

“Soup is the song of the hearth... and the home.”

The title of this post comes from "The Soup Book", written by Louis P. De Gouy in 1949, and it sums up my attitude to soup.  I don't want soup in an elegant restaurant, I don't fancy consommé or Jane Austen's famous white soup.  I want soup when it's cold and the wind is howling, or when I'm feeling sad or miserable, or when the rain is battering the window panes, or when my family is gathered around the table, and it has to be home-made, the tinned stuff just doesn't cut it.  This is my go to, easy, everyday lunch soup, made from a recipe I cut out of a magazine over twenty years ago.  It's very simple and easy to make and there are only four ingredients:

for one generous serving

1 small onion, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
2oz (56g) red lentils
15 fl oz (425ml) stock (I use vegetable stock powder and boiling water)

The original recipe included a stick of celery but we are not keen on it so I never have it in my fridge.  I don't add salt because there's enough for me in the stock powder, but I might add some ground black pepper after it's done.  You can add herbs or spices if you want to, but I don't bother.  I love the flavours just as they are.  So, put all the ingredients in a saucepan, bring it to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 25 minutes.  That's it.  Then I liquidise it, but you don't have to.
This is SO easy.  I always have these ingredients in so I can make it whenever I want to.  In the winter I often make it up every morning while I am getting ready to go out and put it in a flask to take with me for my lunch.  The Mathematician makes up a batch at the beginning of the week and heats up a portion every day.  

If you are cold, it will warm you up.  If you are feeling low, it will comfort you.  If you are feeling rather delicate after over-imbibing the night before, it will revive you.  I often say that it's like eating a bowlful of vitamins, you can feel the goodness in every spoonful.  If you are trying to heat healthily, the only fat, salt, sugar and additives present are in the teaspoonful of stock powder that I use.  If you are counting calories, the recipe says that it's 250, and it makes more than one bowlful so it's enough to fill you up.  If you are frugal, it's very cheap.  It's FABULOUS.
The Best Beloved isn't keen on soup.  The only one he really likes is...Heinz Cream of Tomato!  Grrr.
Love, Mrs Tiggywinkle x


  1. Hello, thank you for clicking the follower button over on my blog. I love your header photo. We've had lots of visits to Shropshire over the years, beautiful countryside, even thought about moving that way once but decided it was too far from the sea!

    1. You are right, Sue, it is MUCH too far from the sea and we dive off to North Wales for a day when we can. I have been reading and enjoying your blog for about a year now - thank you. x

  2. What a lovely wholesome soup. I make a similar one which has butter beans and tarragon in as well. Just perfect for these freezy days.


    1. Hello Jean and thank you. Tarragon is one of my favourite herbs - do you use it dried? x

  3. I live 'over the border' in Worcestershire but Shropshire has a very definite piece of my heart. Looking forward to reading some more of your posts. Happy New Year! Jx

    1. Hi Jan. Hooray for the Welsh Marches! And you have a cathedral, which we don't. I have lived with a teacher for 14 years so I understand the pressures and look forward to reading about how your life changes. x