Blimey, I can hardly believe that it has been over a month since I last posted! A lot has been going on for me over the last five weeks or so. We had a rather hectic Christmas and New Year; it was lovely catching up with friends and family however, our time off flew by far too quickly!! We also moved a few weeks ago to a gorgeous renovated cottage in the middle of a village in Northamptonshire. I really have fallen in love with the place, especially my massive kitchen with complete with a range cooker which has eight hobs, two ovens and a separate grill! We have patio doors off the kitchen which lets a lot of light in which is always a bonus; the kitchen really is a food bloggers dream! Anyway, I hope you’ll forgive me for being so quiet for so long but I really have had a lot on my plate but the house is almost sorted now so I don’t have an excuse!
The weather in the UK really has been dismal of late; lots and lots of rain, wind, a tiny bit of snow and dark mornings and evenings really makes for a depressing month. I thoroughly understand why people suffer from SAD at this time of year!!! With all the cold weather, I think an ideal lunch time dish is soup. Its lovely and warming and utterly comforting; it really is the ideal winter dish!
As regular readers of this blog will know, I’m a sucker for chorizo and also root vegetables. The brighter the colour, the larger the health benefits plus they really fill you up. This soup is the perfect recipe if you are trying to watch your weight however, with only a small amount of chorizo and smoked paprika, you still get a little bit of spice and oodles of strong, rich flavours. Plus, soup is one of those dishes that you can make in a hurry and whack it in the freezer so that you can have a healthy and filling meal in a hurry if you are short on time. The lovely Neil usually moans about having soup as he says “it isn’t a proper meal” however, even he can testify that this recipe really is rather yummy. Give it a go, you wont be disappointed.
Chilli, Chorizo and Butternut Squash Soup
Serves 4 -5
4 small onions
1 red chilli
Tsp smoked paprika
1 kg butternut squash
4 sweet potatoes
1.5 L chicken stock
1. Start by finely dicing the onion and chilli. Peel and dice the chorizo. Peel and dice the sweet potato and butternut squash into larger chunks, about an inch square.
2. Spray a large stock pot with frylight and allow to heat. Fry the onion, chorizo and chilli for 5 – 10 minutes until all ingredients are covered in the chorizo oil.
3. Add the butternut squash, sweet potato and smoked paprika and cook for a few minutes making sure that the paprika has evenly coated everything.
4. Add the stock and season. Bring the pan to the boil, reduced the heat, cover and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes until the vegetables are tender.
5. Allow the soup to cool slightly before blitzing in a food processor until smooth (you can always leave it a bit chunky if you’d prefer).
6. Return to the heat and bring to a simmer before serving, ensuring the soup is piping hot.
You can always fry off a little extra chorizo, snip over some chives and sprinkle over some paprika to up the presentation of this dish a little. Either way, it is simply delicious and can have a bit of a kick to it depending on the strength of your smoked paprika! I buy mine from the ‘Tesco Ingredients’ range and find it is quite fiery; if you don’t like a lot of heat you may want to reduce the paprika to half a tsp.
A perfect dish for a cold, crisp winters day and pretty healthy too!