Cooking is one of my favourite things to do, but in the run up to the Christmas season I've been finding my time a little pushed for making recipes that take longer than half an hour in total (this includes prep). I work in a restaurant and it is starting to get a little hectic right now, so my shifts are increasing, getting longer and getting a little bit more stressful.
So, on my day off last week I whipped up a massive batch of this homemade vegetable soup. And I mean massive: I had 17 portions of it in the end. My freezer has been looking a little rammed, but it has made for an easy lunch each day, giving me that extra little bit of time to chill out. The winter colds have been doing their rounds at the moments, but this soup is so stuffed with goodness that I'm hoping *fingers crossed* it'll stop me from getting one ... again.
An added bonus really is that it is so cheap to make. All of the ingredients I used came to around £3 altogether, which makes each portion around 18p to make!
4 salad tomatoes
3 sticks of celery
3 small onions (or 1 large onion)
6 cloves garlic
2 400g cans of haricot beans
1 400g can of chickpeas
3 handfuls brown pasta
2 pints chicken stock
Salt and pepper
1.) The prep time of this soup is going to take up most of your time, so prepare yourself for a lot of chopping. Before you start any actual cooking, dice the carrots, potatoes, tomatoes, celery and onion. Mince your garlic cloves.
2.) Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large saucepan (I use a big casserole pan for mine). Add the onions and garlic and cook until softened.
3.) Whilst this is cooking make your stock.
4.) Add in all of the rest of the vegetables and a pinch or two of chili flakes, Stir for one minute.
5.) Season with salt and pepper. Add the stock.
6.) Simmer for 15 minutes.
7.) Add the beans, chickpeas, pasta and a tablespoon of mixed herbs (or to taste). Simmer for another 15-20 minutes.
And that's it folks. It's actually a really easy soup to make. There's only a small chance of really burning it, which is something that I definitely need. If you want, you can also add a little grated cheese to your bowl, because, well, who doesn't love cheese?
What's your favourite soup recipe for this time of year?