Tuesday 17 August 2010

Beautiful Soup!

The days are beginning to feel a little Autumnal now. Yesterday was beautifully hot, but there was a cool edge to the wind and the garden is looking a little ragged and faded. Today is overcast and I have to stay in as the attic is being insulated...lots of crashing going on overhead!The Farmer's Market in Marylebone was wonderful on Sunday - stalls piled high with the new season's corn cobs, English plums, bunched ruby beetroot and apples, but still there were late Summer bouquets of old-fashioned deeply scented roses and wonderfully warm-greenhouse-smelling tomatoes, the best of two worlds...it was hard not to buy everything!

Today I've decided to make a soup for lunch, thick with vegetables and pasta and sprinkled with pecorino cheese just before serving.

Cavolo nero cabbage is something I always buy when I see it. Trim the leaves from the tough stalks, wash & chop into thick ribbons and cook immersed in the tomatoey broth of the soup. I also love it cooked in olive oil, chili and garlic and stirred into pasta.

yellow courgettes - just because I adore their sunny cheerfulness against the red and dark green of the soup, cut into dice.
I try not to use tomato puree from a tube in this soup as I find it can be a little metallicand overbearing, but the tomatoes are so ripe and full flavoured that they need little help anyway. I stir in some orzo pasta, the kind that looks like little grains of risotto rice, to thicken the thin broth and add their unique, silky 'mouth feel'.
I have a chunk of Pecorino to grate roughly on top of each bowlful

plenty of ground black pepper, roughly chopped flat leaf parsley - and that's it! Along with the white sourdough loaf that I also bought, which I'll toast and drizzle with some grassy extra virgin oil and sprinkle with a little Maldon salt flakes....absolutely delicious.
I'm also making several batches of Triple Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies today, and then I have to think of a big cake to make for the coffee shop tomorrow....I'll let you know!

Hope you're having a gourmet day too....xo


  1. It is a perfect time for soup I think. It will be even more when Autumn comes and stays.

  2. Sounds Wonderful Rachel. I agree about tomato paste out of a tube......

  3. so gorgeous, I can jsut smell it bubbling away

  4. Sounds great. I must get down to the Market. When is it on? I once had a pasta with pesto made from cavalo Nero and decided I must try making it. I guess it was par cooked first. I was in Italy btw not someone s dodgy home experiment. Those triple choc peanut wossnes sound good. Even from here. X


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