06 December 2010

Vegetable Stew/Soup

This morning, after making the stock and filling both of our little ice cube trays, there was probably about 100ml of chicken stock left over. I decided to make a massive vegetable stew for dinner, so I could purée the rest into soup. After having soup a couple of times recently, I've been wanting it more and more, so cooking a meal specifically for the purpose of having leftovers soup doesn't seem too crazy. Does it?

Vegetable Stew
Makes 2 servings with leftovers for 2 or 3 soup meals

1 pumpkin
2 onions
4 garlic cloves
1 large carrot
3 potatoes
2 leeks
100ml concentrated chicken stock
1/2 bottle white wine (I used Korean plum wine)
Herbs and spices: 3 bay leaves, oregano, rosemary, thyme, basil, parsley, cinnamon, and freshly grated ginger
Handful dried cranberries
1/2 head broccoli

Cut the pumpkin in half, drizzle a little oil on top, and put in the oven at 125 degrees C (face up) for about twenty minutes.

In the meantime, cut the onions into eighths, mince the garlic, dice the carrot and put into an oiled pan over a low heat. Peel and chop the carrot and add to the pan. Peel and chop the potatoes into thirds (mine were small anyway), and add to the pan. At this point it's a good idea to boil a kettleful of water.

Chop the leeks into discs and add to the pan. By now the pumpkin should be ready - the point is to enhance some of the flavours and make it easier to chop, rather than actually cooking it. Remove the skin, chop into bite-sized portions, and add to the pan. Stir everything together and add the chicken stock, along with enough boiling water to generously cover all the vegetables. Boil everything for ten minutes before adding the herbs and spices. Allow to simmer for another ten minutes before adding the chopped broccoli and dried cranberries.

Scoop out a couple of cups of the cooked vegetables in the broth and blend. Return to the pan, making the sauce thicker. Cook for a further five minutes and serve with rice, bread, or anything else.