Cullen Skink

For the stock

– 75g/2½oz butter
– 1 tbsp vegetable oil
– 2 leeks, roughly chopped
– 2 onions, peeled, roughly chopped
– 2 fennel bulbs, roughly chopped
– 250ml/9fl oz white wine
– 500g/17½oz smoked haddock
– 750ml/1 pint 7fl oz water

For the soup

– 75g/2½oz butter
– 1 tbsp vegetable oil
– 2 leeks, finely chopped
– 2 shallots, peeled, finely chopped
– 2 garlic cloves, peeled, crushed
– 300g/10½oz potatoes, peeled, chopped
– 500ml/17½fl oz double cream
– 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
– pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Method for the stock

1, Heat the butter and vegetable oil in a large pan and gently fry the leeks, onions and fennel for 3-4 minutes, or until softened.

2. Add the white wine to the pan and bring to the boil. Add the smoked haddock, pour in the water and bring back to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, skimming off any scum that rises to the surface, until the haddock is cooked through.

3. Strain the haddock, reserving the cooking stock. Chop the haddock into bite-sized pieces.

Method for the soup

1, Heat the butter with the vegetable oil and fry the leeks, shallots and garlic for 3-4 minutes, or until softened.

2, Add the potatoes and the chopped smoked haddock to the pan.

3, Add the reserved cooking stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

4, Stir in the cream and briefly blend the soup with a stick blender.

Serve the soup with crusty bread and sprinkle with the chopped fresh parsley and a sprinkling of freshly grated nutmeg.

Cullen, Scotland

Love you body inside and out!

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in products such as soy milk and low-fat yogurt, has been shown to reduce breast cancer incidence in rats.
I will share various recipes to encourage and support others with a healthy lifestyle but the basics are to eat/drink a little bit of everything and not too much of anything!
Old adage –

‘everything in moderation’

We all need to cleanse the inside of our bodies just as we cleanse the outside! So my first recipe is a Detox soup!
Detox Potassium broth
Ingredients:
2 large potatoes chopped into large chunks
2 large carrots chopped into large chunks
1 cup of red beetroot chopped into chunks
4 celery sticks, chopped into small chunks
1 cup of parsley roughly chopped
1 cup of turnips chopped into chunks
1 cup of peeled and diced red onion
Pinch of cayenne pepper to taste.

Method:
Using a 1.8L (Litres) or 13 1/2P (pints)
Place all ingredients into the stockpot
Bring to the boil for five minutes.
Simmer for two hours, then strain; reserving the liquid to drink!
Drink hot, may be reheated, as required, bringing to the boil.

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Tea Inventory”
Herbs and spices to aid “Digestion”
To prevent painful cramps and sharp pains after eating food, I have found that drinking peppermint tea aids digestion (thanks to my parents recommendation). Other teas which aid digestion include: Peppermint tea, which is a natural anti-spasmodic which means that it slows the muscles in the bowel which in irritable bowel. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) may contract to frequently adding to the pains felt in the intestines also easing flatulence caused by either too much insoluble fibre, drinking fizzy drinks too fast or air taking in whilst eating too quickly.
Camomile tea also helps to ease digestion and has calming soothing properties so easing nerves reducing anxiety – not related to digestion, camomile teabags can be infused cooled and applied to soothe itchy inflamed eyes and is added to creams to soothe rashes and sensitive skin for nursing mothers or their babies.
Nettleleaf tea is used to relieve nettle rash, allergic reactions and hay fever whilst also being high in vitamins and minerals especially iron, which is important for girls and women.
Fennel seed tea is used to aid digestion relieve bloating and nausea whilst also for breastfeeding mothers it is said to increase menstruation, milk flow and reduce colic and wind in the baby (found in many curry spices or seeds).

Traditionally we have added herbs and spices when cooking, each has a role to play and not just for taste but digestive health and comfort. Herbs and spices to aid digestion include; bay, caraway, cardamom, chervil, cumin, cinnamon, dill, ginger, mint, tarragon – so there is a reason why we serve mint sauce with lamb!

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Chilli, Coriander, Carrot & Red lentil soup

Ingredients

100grams/4oz Red lentils

450 grams/1lb Carrots peeled and grated

450 grams/1lb Potatoes peeled and grated

2L/4 pints of fresh or prepared Chicken stock

2L/4 pints of fresh or prepared Vegetable stock

1 teaspoon of Chilli flakes (or more if preferred)

A large bunch of fresh Coriander chopped or 2 teaspoons of dried coriander

Freshly ground Salt and pepper to taste

Method

In a large 6 Litre stock pot bring the stock to the boil, adding the chilli flakes.

Add the Red lentils stirring to prevent sticking bring to the boil for ten minutes.

Peel and grate the potatoes and carrots adding to the pan, stirring well cook for ten minutes.

Add the chopped coriander, salt and pepper to taste, cooking for a further ten minutes.


Serve with crusty fresh bread and butter – gluten and dairy free if you’re like me!

Chicken and vegetable Soup

Ingredients

2 Litres/ 4 pints off freshly made chicken stock with chicken meat

4 medium potatoes peeled and diced into chunks

2 large carrots, peeled and diced into chunksRustic Italian Vegetable Soup

1 onion sliced and finely diced

1oo grams/ 4 0z red lentils

450 grams/ 1 lb swede

1 desert spoon/ 1 oz of each herb – Thyme, Rosemary, Sage

4 Bay leaves – remove after cooking

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Method

Add stock bring to boil adding the chopped vegetables, herbs, bay leaves into the large stock pot while heating.

Cook for 30 minutes.

 

Serve with fresh bread and butter

 

 

A’s simple Autumnal Pumpkin soup

I name this ‘A’s simple Pumpkin soup as my youngest loves it just like this!

However I have added variations underneath;  which make it even more enjoyable for a more adult palate.

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A’s simple Pumpkin soup 

Pumpkin Soup

Pumpkin Soup (Photo credit: pamelasvoboda)

Ingredients:

1 medium Pumpkin

2 litres chicken or vegetable stock – preferably home-made

4 Bay leaves

1 teaspoon of freshly ground mixed peppercorns

Pinch of freshly ground rock salt

Equipment:

Large 4-6 litre stockpot or saucepan

Large wooden spoon or similar

Ladle

Measuring jug

Teaspoon

Liquidiser, blender or hand blender

Method

  1. Finely dice the pumpkin.
  2. Add to the stock pot with the Bay leaves, vegetable or chicken stock ~stirring well.
  3. Adding the pepper and salt boiling for twenty minutes until the pumpkin is soft.
  4. Liquidise with a liquidiser or blender.
  5. Serve in the pumpkin serving with a ladle.
  6. Serve with fresh bread and butter or gluten and dairy free version.

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Variation 1: Simple Pumpkin soup

Ingredients

Potato soup

Potato soup (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Add to pan when adding pumpkin:

~ I medium sized red or white onion finely chopped

~ 4 potatoes peeled and finely diced

Method

  1. Once cooked and softened either liquidise or serve as a chunky soup.
  2. Season to taste.

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Variation 2: Spicy Pumpkin soup

Ingredients

1 medium Pumpkin

1 medium sized red or white onion finely chopped

4 potatoes peeled and finely diced

2 litres chicken or vegetable stock – preferably home-made

4 Bay leaves

1-2 teaspoons of chilli flakes or fresh chilli

1 teaspoon of Freshly ground mixed peppercorns

Pinch of freshly ground rock salt

Equipment:

Large 4-6 litre stockpot or saucepan

Large wooden spoon or similar

Ladle

Measuring jug

Teaspoon

Liquidiser, blender or hand blender

Method:

  1. Finely dice the pumpkin.
  2. Add to the stock pot with the bay leaf, vegetable or chicken stock ~stirring well.
  3. Adding the chilli, pepper and salt boiling for twenty minutes until the pumpkin is soft.
  4. Liquidise with a liquidiser or blender.
  5. Serve in the pumpkin serving with a ladle.
  6. Serve with fresh bread and butter or gluten and dairy free version

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Further spicy and non spicy variations add after adding stock stirring well:

  • chilli, nutmeg and coriander
  • curry powder and parsley
  • chilli, ginger and coriander
  • smoked paprika, nutmeg and coriander

 

Serve with Rosemary Socca Gluten free bread: https://sharonac72.wordpress.com/2012/08/22/rosemary-socca-gluten-free-bread/