Comfort Minestrone

Minestrone soup in a purple bowel with a dollop of green pesto on top.

When I was growing up, my mum would make minestrone on Sunday evenings. At least, she called it “minestrone”. It was composed from a dried packet soup, whatever vegetables she had lying around, and a tin of baked beans. The result was very salty and mainly tasted of baked beans. I loved it though.

I make my version slightly more traditionally, with real stock and no baked beans. It’s still one my comfort foods.

Weekend Cooking: Malt Loaf

I’ve always quite liked the cheap malt loaf that comes in a packet, even though it sticks to the roof of your mouth when you try to eat it. It never occurred to me to try and make my own until I saw a recipe in The Modern Cook’s Year by Anna Jones.

This is not the simplest recipe. There’s a lot going on and at least 5 pots were used. Barley malt is also a difficult substance to work with. It’s so sticky and it gets everywhere.

The result is well worth it though. This is a dense, moist tea bread that tastes amazing with butter. It’s filling too, one slice kept me going for hours.

Weekend Cooking

My partner baked carrot and black pepper soda bread. It’s delicious – savoury, moist and dense. The recipe is from Anna Jones’s book, A Modern Way to Eat.

I feel quite well-organised this weekend. I did some batch-cooking, made the chickpea minestrone from Ruby Tandoh’s Flavour and froze it in portions for later in the week.

I made some hummus too and froze half of that. Much cheaper than buying it and no skimping on the tahini.

Post-therapy soup

Image shows a bowl of tomato soup shot from above. The bowl is white inside with a blue rim.  The soup is bright red and topped with sesame seeds.

Tomato, miso and sesame soup.

Another Anna Jones recipe from a modern way to cook.

This is one of our favourite soups. When I first made it, I couldn’t believe the result was going to be palatable. It contains a lot of miso paste and tahini and the topping has even more miso and tahini, plus honey, lemon and sesame seeds. It just sounds like there’s going to be too much flavour happening, but somehow it works.