Wednesday, 7 April 2010

4 Day Week / end - this I can live with!

Ah - the joys of a 4 day week followed by a 4 day weekend followed by a 4 day week...
Hang on though - it's Wednesday already and I haven't updated on the weekends activities yet - darn! :-D Weather being doubful I found I didn't get as much done as I wanted to - although to be fair I always tend to have grandiose ideas about just how much one individual can achieve in a day with no help. Hey ho - aim high!!

Something I did do: Having found some celery heavily reduced on the CFC at my local stupormarket I bought 2 packs of it and made a rather lovely basic celery soup from scratch from one lot - making it up as I go along rather than following any particular recipe. A few years ago I wouldn't have done that; I'd have been flitting from scales to book to pot, peering at each and wondering if half an ounce out makes a massive difference so I'm pleased in a quiet way that by some magic osmosis kinda process I now seem to know what I'm doing, a bit at least.

Basic Celery soup:
Olive oil - 1 tbsp-ish
Butter - 1oz-ish
Fresh ground black pepper
1 Onion
1 bunch celery
Plain flour - 1oz-ish
1.5 pints veg stock
0.5 pint milk

Heat olive oil and butter together over a low flame. Meanwhile finely chop the onion. Add to the pan and gently cook. Chop outer sticks of celery and add to pot. Add plenty of pepper, or to your taste of course. Whilst doing this boil kettle and make stock.
Add flour to pot and stir well to ensure it cooks out and you don't get that 'flour' taste.
Slowly add a little stock and stir well each time until you have most of a pint in. Then add the rest and the milk. Add the rest of the celery; finely chopped, reserving the leafy tops.
Simmer for approx 10 mins until celery softened. Add chopped tops and simmer for another few-5 mins.
At this point in theory you would blitz in the food processor or use your trusty stick blender. As my 'trusty' stick blender gave up the ghost some time ago and I have yet to replace it and I really couldn't be bothered hauling out the FP I had chopped the celery rather more finely and left it as a slightly chunky soup. Tasted great!

A couple of notes - veg stock - I know the purists way is to make a stock from scratch but when it comes to veg stock sometimes I can't be bothered and I have to admit; I don't like the idea of boiling up all those veg just to chuck them away! Seems an awful waste to me. (I am someone who uses calabrese stalks!)
Over the years I have found myself turning away from Oxo veg stock for soup as although I like the taste I find it can be just too distinctive and ends up dominating. I would use Marigold bouillon powder - also dead handy to have around to make a quick 'cup soup', or the 'Quixo' veg cubes Aldi does are not bad. They cost 89p for 12 and each does 450ml of stock - I use one per pint.
Milk - I think you should prob use full fat milk. I had semi skimmed so that is what I used but it has a tendency to split a little when boiled; still tasted good just less aesthetically pleasing.

There you go - a quick easy basic recipe. Adapt as wanted with seasoning, the addition of diff veg etc. Makes 3-4 servings so enough for a meal and freeze the rest. Enjoy.


  1. Looks good. I use Marigold too, so easy and tasty as a drink, as you say.

  2. Love the recipe,thanks for sharing, I think I'll give it a try. I make leek, potato and celery soup. That's nice with a home made crusty roll. (No wonder I'm not thin!!!)

  3. Thank you both. I love soup in all guises and yes, breads a must with it!! Let me know if you try it how it comes out and what tweaks you do Linda.

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