My cookbook library – Minestrone verde

Minestrone verde

I have to admit I don’t deal with summer heat well. I much prefer cold weather as I find it is so much easier to get warm than it is to stay cool. I love rugging up on the couch in the middle of a thunder storm, with a cup of tea (and maybe a nice baked item) and a good book. Plus winter is great soup weather.

Soups are also great meals on the run, whether at work or between work and racing off to rehearsals when I’m in a show. I like to try new soups in winter so that I keep things interesting and don’t get sick of one soup.  So when I was looking for my latest ‘my cookbook library’ recipe, this new soup fit the bill.

I like this recipe as it is very simply to make, full of vegetables but filling with the addition of the butter beans. This makes a huge pot full and I have placed a few serves of it in the freezer. I will update this post once I’ve tried it after freezing. This recipe could easily be made vegetarian by omitting the pancetta and using only vegetable stock. Cut the vegetables as fine or large as you like (however the larger you slice them, the longer they will take to cook). Don’t be put off by the long list of ingredients. Once everything is chopped, the actual cooking of the soup is easy and only a few steps.

Book recipe number: 4

Number of cookbooks owned: 200+ (I didn’t cheat, I got given two by my lovely French teacher as she couldn’t use them any more as she no longer eats meat)

New book credit: 0.8 (1 more to go before I am allowed to buy another cookbook)

Click here for the recipe

Cauliflower soup

For me blended vegetable soups are not just a winter staple. If I’m rehearsing or performing in a musical, a pot of soup ready to go is a must for me, whatever time of year. It makes a great quick nutritious meal on the go between work and rehearsals/performances when I don’t want anything too heavy for dinner. It also makes a great quick and easy lunch to take to work.

A few years back I was experimenting with different types of vegetable soups and I stumbled across a recipe for cauliflower soup. I looked up a few other recipes, got some ideas and then went and made this one. I was surprised with the result and it’s now one of my favourites. It’s not for everyone. If you don’t like cauliflower then you aren’t going to like this soup. But the basic principles can be used with a lot of other  vegetables for a quick easy meal.


click here for the recipe