Tag Archives: winter food

Roasted Pumpkin and Carrot Soup

This is the first recipe for the month of December, the end of a very eventful and busy year…and it’s cold. Well, not as cold as parts of continental Europe – it was a balmy 18°C today on this little island – but the temperature does go down a bit as soon as the sun goes down. This, to me, means snuggling on the sofa, cosy throws, candles, Christmas lights (something of an obsession of mine), binge-watching episodes of The Crown, roasts, baking and bowls of soup with warm, crusty herb bread.

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Two Simple Recipes: Vegetable Soup and Garlic and Chilli Kale

Garlic and Chilli Kale with Chunky Vegetable Soup (8631)

It’s still reasonably cold in the Med and I’m still nursing a very bad cold. My neighbour’s kid is having a ball running amuck right above my head, most probably sitting on a desk chair and sprinting across the corridor. Either that or playing boċċi. Who knows? Can’t imagine the grief he’s giving his mum, but I can definitely picture the grief he’s giving me!

So just when my head starts to ache I decide to post two recipes on C&T. Simple stuff but they are just the things I want to eat when I’m inside with quite some time to spend in the kitchen. There will be plenty of chances in the future for chips. That’s exactly what’s keeping me going! *Checking my forehead for fever*

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Beef and Anchovy Stew

Beef and Anchovy Stew (8239)

Shall I state the obvious? I think I will. If you don’t like beef and/or anchovies just don’t bother. Mmm…don’t like the sound of that so let me rephrase. If you like beef but you or anyone you’re feeding is not so keen on anchovies, to put it mildly, try this recipe. Adding them does make a difference. You will not be able to taste them, but they give a depth of flavour that you won’t get with anything else.

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Sweet Potato Pasta bake

Sweet Potato Pasta Bake (6695)Earlier this year a very dear friend of mine stayed with us for a few days. She travelled to London everyday. By the time she arrived back it would have already been late in the evening, tired as one would expect. After a day’s work there’s nothing better than a warm meal, especially when it’s rainy and cold I must add. J loves a good pasta bake too so I made this for all of us. It makes for a light meal, perfect if you’re having a late supper. Just don’t serve a crumble for dessert! Or please do. I’m hungry!

Sweet Potato Pasta Bake (6696)

You might think that for a little pasta bake my method has quite a lot of faff, but I really don’t mind it. And you know how impatient I can get. I will tell you though that it also works if you choose not to cook the onions and sweet potatoes beforehand. I have tried this too when I was in a bit of a hurry. Just prolong the baking time to around 25 to 30 minutes. Then add the greens and Gorgonzola just before serving. I might give today’s pizza a miss and cook this instead. It is delicious.

Serves 3-4

  • 300g wholemeal fusilli (or penne)
  • 2 onions, roughly chopped (optional)
  • 6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 8 small dry sage leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil (and more as needed to top things off)
  • pinch salt
  • pepper, to taste
  • 6 tablespoons breadcrumbs
  • some greens to serve (I used rucola)
  • Gorgonzola, to serve

Line a roasting tin with parchment paper or kitchen foil, or grease it with a little olive oil. Set aside.

Boil the sweet potatoes for a few minutes, but don’t cook them through. Drain and put them in a large mixing bowl. If you decide to use the onions sweat them with a little olive oil in a shallow pan over medium heat, till they turn opaque and golden brown. Tip these in the bowl with the sweet potatoes.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Cook the pasta as per packet instructions, preferably leave them al dente, or slightly undercooked. Place this in the same bowl with the cooked sweet potatoes. Add the sage, thyme, drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper, mix the whole lot and tip this mixture into your prepared roasting tin.

Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top and bake for not more than 15 minutes.

When the pasta is out of the oven, add the rucola and serve with a few cubes of Gorgonzola on each individual serving.

Enjoy!