Ma’s panicking about a dinner party she has to host on Saturday. She’s a very good cook, no one can make a better lemon meringue pie like she can (if you’re reading dear Mama, you couldn’t send me the recipe could you?) and her stir-fries are the best. However, one of the guests coming along this weekend was a semi-finalist in Masterchef so you can imagine she’s a little nervous. Anyway she’s making a soup for starters that I have the recipe to and I’ve just emailed it to her and I thought to myself, it sounds so nice why don’t I put it on the blog? It’s not one of mine, it’s from a now out of print book called The Pocket Soup Cookbook published by Penguin. It’s well worth seeking it out, it’s rather good. No photo of it as I’ve never made it so here’s a [not very good] artists impression of the hot steaming bowl of goodness that’s perfect for these rather miserable winter days.. 

Red pepper soup with coriander pesto 

2 large red peppers 

1 tablespoon olive oil 

1 small onion, finely chopped 

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 

400g tinned plum tomatoes 

4 cups veg stock 

1 teaspoon lemon zest 

2-3 tablespoons lemon juice 

2 teaspoons sugar 

Salt and pepper 

Coriander pesto 

1 bunch fresh coriander, leaves trimmed and stems discarded

1 bunch parsley, leaves trimmed and stems discarded 

2 cloves garlic 

60g roasted cashew nuts 

60g freshly grated parmesan cheese 

3-4 tablespoons olive oil 

To make coriander pesto, blend first five ingredients in a food processor, then gradually add oil until a smooth, creamy sauce forms 

Cut peppers in half and remove pith and seeds. Grill until skins are blistered and black. Remove to a bowl, cover with cling film and cool for five minutes. When cool, remove skins and finely chop flesh 

In a saucepan heat oil and add onion and garlic. Cook over a gentle heat for 3-4 minutes. Add pepper, tomato and stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool a little. Add Lemon zest and juice, sugar and salt and pepper. 

Place in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Check seasoning and return to the saucepan. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with coriander pesto.




9 Responses

  1. Cracking picture – I’m thinking you use one of those top-o-the-range digital cameras I’ve been hearing about on the streets 😉

    p.s. which semi-finalist and are they in this week’s shows? (I’m addicted to that programme!)

  2. It’s good isn’t it? I think it’s about two trillion mega pixels.

    Oh, he competed years ago, when Masterchef was still helmed by Grossman. I keep catching bits if I get home early of this series and it is rather good isn’t it? I didn’t realise that the sems were on now. I might get Dave to Sky+ it.

  3. You know, your blogs a dead good place to find out the things you’re going to ask me to do before you atually do it. Forewarned is forearmed as ‘they’ say

  4. Mmmm this sounds absolutely stunning.

    I’ll have to try it this week!

    Thank you :D.

    [/random person entry]

  5. “[/random person entry]”

    Err. I’m sure you can get arrested for that, you know.

  6. Hi Char! Your picture should read “Red pepper soup with coriander pesto”. Whoops! Yeah, it’s a delicious soup and yes I’ll let you have my secret recipe for the Lemon Meringue! Love Ma xx

  7. Thanks Random person! Thanks Ma! So how did dinner go?

  8. “Err. I’m sure you can get arrested for that, you know.”

    Haha, oh dear.

    Depends where you are I guess, although that’s another story.

    Mildew’s Ma, please can we all have the recipe? Or is it a family kinda thing?

  9. Ash, don’t worry, as soon as I get that recipe it’ll be on here.

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