Brought up on my mothers home cooked traditional meals, I am no stranger to soup… honestly, I can ramble a good 20 odd straight off the top of my head at any given time. However, it seems to me there are a lot of people around me these days who don’t know how to make soup, or hold of a lot of misconceptions about soup. Despite what people may think soup doesn’t have to be labourious or take hours to make, instead, soups can be one of the simplest, easiest, heartiest things you can make.
- Great for bulk cooking
- Freezes well
- One-pot cooking
- Quick and easy *ready in approx 15 minutes
Ingredients (per serve)
- 200 grams of cauliflower (approx. 1/3 of a large cauliflower or packed 2 cups)
- 50 grams (about ½ a medium) carrot
- 50 grams of frozen peas
- 50 grams red capsicum/bell pepper
- ½ medium tomato
- ¼ medium onion
- 500ml vegetable or chicken stock – or water with a stock cube added
- Drizzle of oil – for cooking
- Other recommended ingredients that can be included include – green beans and/or corn; replacing a portion of stock with canned/pureed tomato for a richer soup; and/or adding shredded chicken, beans or red lentils (which will require additional liquid) for a protein boost.
Herbs and Spices *Please adapt the spices to your taste preferences. You can simply double the quantity of spices/herbs if you like them.
- ¼ teaspoon of sweet paprika
- ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder – you can use fresh garlic if you prefer
- ½ teaspoon of Italian herbs – I used oregano, basil, thyme and marjoram
*You can also use herbs like dill, rosemary or fennel to suit your taste preferences
- ¼ pepper
- Pinch of salt – if your stock is salty you might not need this
- Other recommended spices/herbs that can be included include – cumin, turmeric, chili and/or cayenne or bay leaf, dill, rosemary and/or fennel.
- 1 small pot with a lid – if you’re only making a single serve. If you don’t have a lid, you may need to use more stock/water
- Kitchen knife
- Chopping board
- Blender – I used a handheld blender
- Knife or fork
- 200g or cauliflower is approx 50 calories
A great source of vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B6.
- 50g of carrot is approximately 20 calories
A great source of vitamin A
- 50 grams of peas approx 30 calories
A good source of vitamin C, B1, K, Manganese and fibre.
- 50 grams red capsicum/bell pepper approx 30 calories
A great source of vitamin C as well as B6 and A
- ½ medium tomato approx 10 calories
A good source of vitamin C, biotin, molybdenum, and vitamin K
- ¼ medium onion approx 10 calories
A good source in vitamin C, was well as dietary fiber, and folic acid
- The nutritional content and health benefits of the remaining ingredients including stock, herbs and spices will depend on the type you use.
However, according to my research, 500mls of the average supermarket stock will set you back approx 40 calories.
- Chop cauliflower, capsicum, onion and carrot roughly. The size of your cutting will determine the cooking time, the smaller the quicker it will cook so I recommend small florets for the cauliflower, 1.5cm cubes for the carrot and ½ cm strips for the capsicum and onion.
Note: To speed up the process, I cut my onions, and whilst sautéing them I cut the rest of my vegetables.
- In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, herbs and spices and sauté until onions are transparent, approx 3-4 minutes.
- Add stock. When the liquid boils, add the carrot and cauliflower. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the capsicum and tomato. Cook until the carrot and cauliflower is tender. This should take approx another 3-5 minutes depending on how small you cut your vegetables.
Note: To test of vegetables are tender, simply taste a vegetable or place a sharp knife on a vegetable, and applying very minimal pressure, the knife should enter the vegetable with little give. If the knife meets resistance in the middle of the vegetable, more so than the outer portion of the vegetable it is not quite ready.
- Once tender. Turn off heat, and add peas.
- Blend soup to desired consistency. I use a handheld blender and simply give it a quick 5-10 second buzz.
Note: Be careful of any splash back if you are blending the soup whilst it is still hot.
- Serve immediate, or let cool and pack away in the fridge for tomorrows lunch, or freeze for an evening you can’t be bothered cooking.