PAUL’S CAUL

Supposedly I’m meant to write about food.

Word on the street is I’m meant to be writing about food… maybe I have a tendency to get a little carried away with a rant here and an opinion there, but I figured that’s why you love me. Now it has also come to my attention that Graeme and I may very well be writing this purely for ourselves as I have no evidence that any of you are real. So I’d like to conduct a small experiment, I will write this blog chock-a-block full of food goodness with a recipe to finish it. But I want photographic evidence that someone has actually cooked something at least similar to my recipe.

Have we got a deal?

Well have we?

What’s that, this is not what you signed up for and would prefer that I stop pretending I’m having a discussion with you… fair enough.

So lets walk over to the fridge and see what’s in there for us to use, hopefully by now this small exercise doesn’t end with you looking at a few cans of beer, some margarine, a withered half lemon and a chunk of poorly glad wrapped cheese which by all accounts is more closely related to wood rather than a dairy product.

Lets just pretend that’s there is a few onions, some celery and a couple of other veggie’s (you should always have onions and celery). What we are going to make is a soup. For me a soup is such a brilliant way to get involved in the kitchen, it teaches you so many basic cooking techniques that can be used in a variety of other areas of the kitchen.

Just about every soup starts of the same way, with a couple of onions and a few sticks of celery sweat off in either oil or butter with a pinch of salt…

Now I’m not going to go through the whole recipe here, what I want to do is get the overall concept to you and later I’ll write down a recipe for you, but by then you shouldn’t need one…

Back to the pot, simply whack in whatever is in the fridge (no not the half lemon and wood cheese) I mean a zucchini or a sweet potato, left over cauliflower, a couple of rashers of bacon and some tomatoes. You can even spread your gathering as far as the cupboard and grab some tinned corn, tomatoes or beans… there is literally so much scope when searching for soup ingredients.

Just make sure you stick to a few flavours and don’t get to carried away, and if it’s so old you weren’t going to eat it, don’t think boiling it will magically make it better.

Now for some flavor, this is the best part of the process, this can make or break the soup, your flavouring arsenal should consist of spices, herbs, stocks even vinegars… but most importantly you must never forget the salt and pepper. And if in doubt finish with some cream, that stuff makes everything taste better.

Here’s one of my favourite soups for you to have a crack at…

Now don’t forget I require feedback, do you like the recipe? Would you like me to talk more about world politics? Is it rants you want about random topics?

We aren’t mind readers… or are we???

No, we’re definitely not.

Potato, mushroom, leek and miso

2 onions sliced
2 sticks of celery sliced
2 cloves of garlic
1 large leek sliced
1 ½ cups mushrooms sliced
4 potatoes peeled & sliced
1 tablespoon miso
5 sprigs of thyme (leaves removed and stalks disguarded)
2 litres of chicken stock or veg stock
1 cup white wine
1 cup pouring cream
50g butter
50ml olive oil
Salt
White pepper
• Place butter and oil in a medium sized pot, add the onion, leek and celery with a pinch of salt and cook until they start to caramelize…
• Add the garlic, miso, thyme and white wine and then reduce wine by half…
• Add the potatoes and stock then simmer for an hour or until the potatoes are soft…
• Blend the soup with a stick blender and add cream, check seasoning and pass through a strainer…
• Serve immediately with heaps of crusty bread and butter.