Noms Thread: Winter Warmers

I’ve been cooking a lot of soups and stews lately, plus even more roasts than usual.  What’s everybody else found specially nommish while it’s cold?

If you’ve already blogged some recipes, please do link!

I have previously posted on my individually wrapped serves of boeuf-en-croute:

An individual serve of Beef Wellington

Fragrant Sour and Spicy Thai Soup

I have recently discovered that cumin is excellent in pea and ham soup – not too much, just enough to ‘cut’ some of the pea-ness. My local grocer also has an excellent “Continental Soup Mix” which is assorted pulses and beans that cook up beautifully with plenty of veges.

Categories: Life

Tags: ,

25 replies

  1. This:

    is frakking awesome! Esp served with cous cous. We cooked it when staying with friends by putting it in the bottom drawer of one of those combustion fireplaces. A bit of chopping then it all goes in the oven for ages and yumminess ensues.

  2. I have plans for a parsnip soup using a recipe that was posted to the Soup Makers Club on Facebook.
    We had a couple of fabulous stews cooked in the cauldron over an open fire at the Blacktown Medieval Fair a few weeks back. Saturday’s was a beef and Guinness one and Sunday was lamb in red wine with onion, bacon, mushrooms, carrots, parsnip, swede and parsley, sage, rosemary AND thyme. I got a bit carried away in the herb section when I was shopping for the ingredients 🙂

  3. Mmm…soon I will have fires on which to cook things. Huzzah!

  4. My winter regular is beef soup with barley and vegetables. Starts with beef stock bones, roasted up in the oven until they smell delicious, then add to a stock pot with a few roughly cut sticks of celery and carrots, and a quartered onion and a bouquet garni sachet, plus enough water to cover everything. Simmer until the meat starts to fall off the bones, then cool it all overnight.
    Then next morning, remove all the solid stuff from the stock (bones, veg, fat), discard any fat, and the stock vegetables, and strip the meat from the bones. If you’re really fussy, strain or clarify the stock to get rid of all the scum (I’m generally not too fussy).
    Now add the reserved meat from the soup bones, your finely chopped vegetables (essentials are onion, carrot, celery and turnip; optionals include cabbage, potato, parsnip, green beans, peas, zucchini and anything else you think might go well in soup – about the only ones I’d rule out would be cauliflower and broccoli), and a couple of generous handfuls of pearl barley (my usual measure is the lid of the container I store the barley in – it used to hold Green & Blacks hot chocolate mix). My rule is just keep adding vegetables until the soup is almost thick enough to hold a wooden spoon upright, but then I’m a huge fan of soups which are just about stew. I’ll also tend to add a couple of pieces of chopped up gravy beef as well, just to give it some extra oomph. Simmer until everything is cooked (the barley is usually the best thing to time stuff by), then serve hot with crusty bread.
    Tastes gorgeous. Can be heartened up with a dose of red wine, or some soya sauce for colour. I’m reasonably sure it freezes well, too (although I’ve never had any left long enough to find out).

  5. Recipe for happiness: One jar of peanut butter, one jar of strawberry jam, one teaspoon. Combine.
    I make biscuit-shaped morale boosters for team meetings, and according my thorough scientific tests, these ones have the highest joy co-efficient of all the variations.
    110g butter
    3/4 cup sugar
    1 egg (or substitute, I use flax)
    1 1/2 cups self raising flour
    1 teaspoon each cinnamon, nutmeg & caster sugar.
    Oven at 180. Cream the butter and sugar, then beat in the egg and vanilla. Sift the flour in and mix to form a dough. Roll the dough into balls, then roll the balls in the combined sugar and spices to coat. Bake for 10 minutes, and leave them to cool on the trays.

  6. TAK, I’d never heard of flax as an egg substitute! Cool. 🙂
    I like slow cooker food, especially for cold weather. Our family favours (mild) spicy too, so stuff like Slow Cooker Butter Chicken is in :
    I replace the yoghurt with silken tofu (attacked with a barmix before adding) and get it dairyfree.

  7. My favourite comfort food over winter is a very simple potato and leek (vichyssoise) soup.
    My recipe (which I don’t follow exactly) says:
    8 large (1.5kg) potatoes
    1 large (550g) leek
    1.5 litres (6 cups) chicken stock (I replace this with vegetable stock)
    ¾ cup cream (I often use evaporated milk, and I imagine there would be a tofu alternative)
    I go by how much the ingredients weigh, rather than the quantities; I’m yet to find a leek that is even close to 550g, and the key to this soup is including enough leek so it doesn’t just taste like mashed potato. I usually purchase ~600g of leek, and then weigh how much it winds up as once chopped and scale the potato back accordingly (but always use the same amount of stock, to avoid mashed potato consistency).
    • Peel and roughly chop potatoes
    • Trim leaves from leek, chop white part roughly; wash, drain well
    • Combine potato, leek and stock in large pan, bring to boil.
    • Reduce heat, simmer, covered 40 minutes.
    • Blend soup until smooth
    • Add cream, reheat without boiling
    • Serve topped with chives if desired
    • Can also be served chilled
    The only thing worth noting at the end is that this soup is not suitable to freeze, so be sure to make it when you’re going to actually get through it!

  8. As promised yesterday on another thread …
    Savoury Pumpkin Soup
    1/4 Kent or Jap pumpkin
    4 small potatoes
    4 carrots
    1 onion or 1 leek (or 1/2 of each)
    1 sweet potato
    1 can diced tomatoes
    Peel and chop vegetables coarsely. Place the veges and diced tomato in a large pot and add 4-5 cups of chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to boil and simmer for up to an hour until veges are soft. Let cool, then put the whole mixture through a food processor. Return to pot, and add a tablespoon of curry powder for flavour. Stir and simmer for another 15 minutes or so, and serve, freezing any left-overs.

  9. I’m doing a huge line in slow-cooked casserole lately (vegetarians, please avert your eyes). All I do is cut a huge piece of cheap beef into rough chunks, getting rid of the fattiest bits, but not being too careful, brown it in a great big pot, then throw in a couple of whole onions and probably some carrot (firm veggies only) and a few bay leaves, then cover it with cask red, put the lid on, and leave the whole thing to bubble away on the stove top for about two hours. At the end I take of the lid and let it boil off some of the liquid. You can leave it chunky, but I like it best mooshed up a bit so all the meat falls apart. It then becomes a divisable, freezable base for a whole bunch of different things:
    – serve as a casserole on pumpkin or kumera mashed with cumin
    – tip it into shortcrust for a pie
    – add rendang paste and perhaps some chick peas for a curry
    – add beans and chilli for enchiladas or nachos
    – add stock and maybe some last-minute baby spinach leaves for soup
    There is always some excuse for a dollop of sour cream on top.
    Brought to you by the chick who never got over the student share-house dinner.

  10. SarahB: “¾ cup cream (I often use evaporated milk, and I imagine there would be a tofu alternative)”
    When I’m trying to make potato soup without animal ingredients, I substitute coconut milk or cream – it’s delicious. It’s also great in pumpkin soup, with a good gob of Thai red curry paste.

  11. Its hot and humid where i am, but i usuali live where it gets cold, and i turn to’ hot chocolate and cauliflower soup to’ warm up.
    Soup recipes are on my blog:
    For hot chocolate i use spelt milk ( or soy when i cant get it) add a tsp of golden syrup, dome nutmeg, a tbs cocoa and some sugar, then heat until i see the top just starting to’ swirl- i dont let it boil because it dose something funny to’ soy. If i have some, i dip chocolate into it and eat it all melty, too. So good.

  12. @Keira
    for some reason I read that as [hot chocolate & cauliflower] soup, which seemed an interesting combination. Separately, however, sounds really good.

  13. Oh, what an inspiring thread.

  14. @mindy Yeah, I thought that might happen. I was commenting from an Ipod which is currently stuck in broken place, where it corrects my spelling into Italian (even though it is set to English), and I was too busy battling it to pay attention to my grammar 🙂

  15. This is one of my favourite winter dishes. It feels ridiculously decadent, and so very moreish…

  16. This is a recipe for onion soup with garlic bread soldiers that I just tumbld to make it shareable. I love it quite a lot. I’ve also been making pumpkin soup recently for its warming powers of warming. Secret ingredient = tablespoon of peanut butter.

  17. Tonight’s dinner was prepped this morning: meatloaf and vegie bake.
    The vegie bake is sliced potato and parsnips (parboiled), onion (parboiled and cut into wedges), and quartered Swiss brown mushrooms fried off with sliced shallots and thyme and garlic. The whole is mixed and seasoned with salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese, and it’s sitting in a Pyrex lasagne dish. At oven time I’ll pour over a cream/milk mix and put some cheese and a sprinkle of pepper and paprika on top.
    The meatloaf is a base of mixed local beef/lamb/pork. Into that goes a generous serve of quick oats, two eggs, a large grated carrot, diced shallots, tomato paste, kecap manis, thyme, sage, pepper, salt, paprika, cinnamon, and chilli. The Lad invented the glaze: shiraz jelly, maple syrup, and balsamic vinegar.
    There’ll be greens on the side – probably steamed green beans and/or whatever leaves are in the fridge.

  18. Tonight is roast chook with mashed potatoes (skin left on), steamed baby Brussels sprouts, corn on the cob, garlic-fried mushrooms and sliced onion served with lashings of gravy.

  19. A classic combo if ever there was one, tiggers. Glancing over this thread I see that, aside from TAK’s biscuits, this has been an exclusively savoury exercise. This is a tragic imbalance that can best be addressed with a really easy lemon cake. Served straight out of the oven, it’s more pudding-ish than teatime, and just sticky enough:
    – Cream 125g butter, 3/4 cup sugar, 1 tblsp lemon zest
    – Beat in 2 eggs
    – Add 1/2 cup sour cream (thin with a splash of milk, if you like)
    – Sift in 1 cup SR and 1/2 cup plain flour
    – Bake 35-40 min @ 180 deg C
    – Mix 1/2 cup lemon juice with 1/4 cup caster sugar
    When the cake comes out, prick it all over with a skewer and pour over the lemon/sugar mix. As soon as it’s all soaked in, serve with a dollop of double cream.

  20. Addendum to the beef casserole variations above: mush it up fine, add cream and green peppercorns for a stunning pasta sauce. I have a feeling it would be especially good on a mushroom-filled ravioli, though I haven’t tried that yet.

  21. Has my daughter been reading this thread? We’ve had chicken, potato and leek soup, and today a lemon cake which we ate still hot and feathery light. Mmm-mm.
    Last year we perfected the bread-and-butter pudding – can’t go past it for a winter dessert. Son has suggested we try making a choc version with cocoa in the custard and choc-bits instead of sultanas. I wouldn’t go past the classic vanilla custard and sultanas myself, but I’ll try it sometime and report back. It’ll either be amazing or gross.

    • I used to make a bread and butter pudding with marmalade and just a splodge of whisky – spread the marmalade on the bread pieces so it’s evenly distributed, and mix the splodge of whisky into the eggy mix. Haven’t done that for ages, but it’s good.

  22. Ta-dah! Courtesy of Martha Stewart (yes, really. Got a ‘holiday baking’ magazine for 50 euro cents from Oxfam in Dublin. Kept our tiny flat with crappy heaters warm by baking from it all winter. Ah, memories). Reproduced in the original imperial (sorry), but halved to the quantities I’ve used when I cooked it, because her quantities are always for families the size of Don Draper’s infidelities list:
    Chocolate Brioche Pudding
    6 oz bittersweet chocolate
    1/2 quart half-and-half (I think this is a mix of cream and milk?)
    4 egg yolks
    1/3 cup sugar
    1 tsp vanilla essence
    1 half-pound loaf brioche
    – Break chocolate into small pieces in a heat-proof bowl. Bring half-and-half just to a simmer, pour over the chocolate and stir until melted and combined.
    – In another bowl whisk yolks, sugar and vanilla. Add chocolate mixture and whisk until smooth.
    – Cut brioche into slices. Put half in a roasting dish, pour over half the chocolate mix and press down to help the bread absorb the custard. Repeat with the remainder.
    – Let stand about 30 mins for all to absorb.
    – Place dish in a large roasting pan filled with enough hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake in a low oven (325/165) about 35 mins, until set.
    – serve with creme fraiche.
    I have also made it in individual ramekins, with a slightly lowered oven temperature. Looks nice for a dinner party.

  23. I’ve heard you can use custard powder instead of eggs for a vegan version, but haven’t tried it myself. There’s no real point to puddings when you’re cooking for one on a budget. You just spread some old bread with jam and figure that’s good enough.
    Gingerbread, though, I could eat all day.

%d bloggers like this: