At the very second I opened my eyes to the grey weather outside today, I had flashbacks of winter in Canterbury in UK. That place with so many memories of friends gathering up in my small kitchen to get themselves a bowl of this loving soup. Some called it “The Magic Potion” (though making it is not magic at all) and today I will share with you its charming ingredients:
– Chicken (Cubes of chicken breast or full pieces would work the same, I prefer using small chicken thighs)
– Green Beans
– Fresh Mushrooms
– Red Beans (optional)
– Vegetable Stock
– 2 Tbsp Flour
– Salt & Pepper
Basically first things first, add the onions that are coarsely chopped to a dash of oil in a big deep pan. As it starts to yellow you drop the chicken in there (do not stir it immediately as it needs time to cook a little so as not to stick to the bottom) make sure it is on low heat and cover it. Meanwhile you should peel the carrots and potatoes and chop them in big pieces, adding them as you go. Get your mushrooms ready (do not wash the mushrooms with water, all you need to do is peel the exterior or brush them to get them clean). Start chopping the rest of the veggies and add them all to the pan, the next thing you got to do is fill up the pan with water to cover all the ingredients completely.
By now the pot must be boiling and the smell of the soup filling the air. Add the vegetable stock and some pepper, wait a few minuets then check if it needs some salt. After a while you can check the potatoes, once they are cooked well through, you need to add the flour (you stir it in a cold cup of water). You will see your beautiful soup thickening and getting more and more appealing to the eye and your mouth would be watering. You can serve this soup with some warm grainy bread on the side.
Usually people in cold weather get a sweet tooth, and during my studying years, time was of the essence and sometimes I had to make up alternative recipes for my favorite dishes to make them even quicker. Apple pies and apple crumble are a definite favorite for most in the winter, it is also very time consuming. That being said, I would love it if you try the following recipe:
– Brown Sugar
– Digestive Biscuits
– Vanilla ice cream
Those sudden visits of guests that leave you puzzled to what you can offer them and make them feel welcome. You grab a few apples (you can use pears and/or peaches too) , peel them and slice them in relevantly thin pieces. Use a shallow pan, put the apple slices in with a big dollop of honey and add to it a big spoon of brown sugar. As the sugar starts to melt you will notice the apples are getting a little softer, add your teaspoon of cinnamon and give it a couple of min to see the apple sauce is taking the cinnamon color in then remove it from heat. Do not dry it out keep some sauce in the pan, if you have to you can add more honey to it.
Get some small serving plates ready, put the biscuit at the bottom, add some of that apple mixture then the ice cream on the side and drizzle some of the sauce over it, you can also add a few dried cranberries or raisins for garnish. I guarantee the taste is heavenly and the reactions are always positive.
I leave you with warm wintery wishes to you all…