Sunday, 12 January 2014

Squash & Ginger Soup

It turns out I wasn't lying when I said I wouldn't be blogging much over the coming weeks. This is my first proper post of the year which seems terribly late but I think it's a good one and I hope you do too.


If you follow me on Twitter then you may have seen a sneak preview of this recipe last week. Whenever I come up with something new I scribble it down quickly in my notebook. Generally this is just a list of ingredients with a hint of a method so that when it comes to writing it up on my blog I can remember how I made the dish. After I scribbled down the recipe for this soup I decided to take a quick snap of my notebook and post it on Twitter. No particular reason, I just thought it might be a bit of fun as I was always told off at school for my terrible handwriting and wanted to give my followers a challenge. It turns out that my handwriting is nowhere near as bad as I was led to believe by my teachers, it is also considerably worse now than it was when I left school, like most people I now tend to type more than pick up a pen.


The soup recipe was inspired by the parsnip and ginger soup recipe in the River Cottage Veg Everyday book which my parents bought me for Christmas. I didn't have any parsnips in the fridge but I do have lots of squashes at the moment. I bought a big box of them from Riverford a while ago and we're still working our way through them. I'm not quite sure what type of squash I used, I asked online and someone suggested it could be a melon squash which would make sense as it certainly smelt a bit like melon crossed with cucumber. Any squash or pumpkin would work in this soup, likewise with the stock, whichever you have to hand. I used some homemade ham stock leftover over from cooking the Christmas ham. I added all sorts of spices when making my ham stock including cinnamon, cloves, cumin, cardamom, bay leaves, black peppercorns and mustard seeds along with carrots and leeks. It makes the kitchen smell amazing and acts as a wonderful base for so many dishes. As my stock was quite strong I diluted it with water so it wouldn't overpower the other ingredients.


There is quite a lot of garlic and ginger (both of which are very good for you) in this soup but it ends up being quite mellow and the squash still shines through. The ginger gives a gentle heat which could be boosted by adding a chopped red chilli if you like. The split peas give this soup a satisfyingly thick texture and also fill you up for longer which is perfect for busy days when you want something quick and hot for lunch.

Ingredients - serves 4 to 5
1 onion, chopped
30g root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
3 large fat garlic cloves, peeled
~800g squash/pumpkin unprepared weight, peeled, deseeded and cut into cubes
150g dried yellow split peas soaked overnight
1.1 litres of stock - I used 600ml strong ham stock and 500ml water, a light chicken or veg stock would work too
oil
  • Heat a little oil in a large pan over a medium heat and fry the onion until softened. 
  • Put the ginger and garlic in a pestle and mortar with a pinch of salt and pound to a coarse paste then add to the onions and fry for a couple of minutes until fragrant. 
  • Add the squash and cook for a minute or two, stirring often then add the split peas and the stock, bring to the boil then cover and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the split peas and squash are tender. 
  • Blend the soup and check the seasoning before serving in bowls with a chunk of crusty bread. 
I'm linking this post up with Made With Love Mondays, Credit Crunch Munch run by Helen and Camilla and Feel Good Food where the theme this month is tasty and inexpensive. 





15 comments:

  1. Gorgeous combo. Love the idea of the ginger with the squash. Like velvet! I have only done 2 posts so far so don't worry! Jan in always slow x

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    1. Thanks Dom! I'm sure I'll catch up soon :)

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  2. I love Butternut Squash Soup and l like the addition of ginger for heat and the yellow split peas sound like a lovely frugal addition too. Thanks for entering Credit Crunch Munch:-)

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    1. Thanks Camilla, yes the split peas are really great cheap way to bulk this out and healthy too :)

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  3. Lovely soup, especially with the lovely flavour of the ginger and garlic adding to it. Well, yes, the handwriting can be read, but it might not work for school standard.

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    1. It's too late to improve my handwriting now, bad habits have stuck!

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  4. Gorgeous soup Jen! You are like me I have notebooks everywhere and I am always scribbling in them. Trouble is I have so many on the go, I have to search for each recipe I have scribbled down. I bet you love Paperchase too!

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    1. I've only got 2 notebooks on the go at the moment but you're right I do love Paperchase, such pretty stationery! :)

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  5. This looks lovely, just right for a cold January day.
    I was recently given a small butternut squash and a large spaghetti squash (both home grown) and was trying to think of what to do with them. Now I know!

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    1. Thanks Jean, if in doubt make soup! I'm sure yours will taste very good with the homegrown squashes :)

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  6. I have a butternut squash to use up, so this looks ideal! Thanks... Keep scribbling!

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    1. I think this would be very nice with butternut squash as it's sweeter than the one I used, enjoy!

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  7. Looks like a delicious soup Jen. I love your hand writing by the way. It's much more sophisticated than my big girly scribble!

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    1. Wow, I don't think anyone has ever called my writing sophisticated before, thanks Claire. This is a relatively neat example for me, usually much worse!

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  8. What a stunning soup, Jen! I love the sound of ginger with squash and the color is wonderfully vibrant...

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Thank you for reading, please feel free to comment on any of my posts. I love to hear what you think! :)