What I'm cooking and eating

Friday, 20 November 2015

Douceur de courgettes au Vache qui Rit

I first came across this rather odd-sounding soup in a Tetrapak in a French supermarket, and liked it.  These days they seem to do it with goats' cheese, instead, but when I wanted to make soup for our lunch the other day, I thought I'd have a go.  And it is very good, although I used too much garlic (but we both have viruses, so I did that on purpose) - more than the recipe says.

1 tbs coconut oil
1 smallish onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed (optional)
2 small potatoes, peeled and chopped
About 750g courgettes (zucchini, to my American friends), chopped
1 Knorr (or supermarket own brand) vegetable Stock Pot
1 litre boiling water
 2 Vache qui Rit (Laughing Cow) triangles
1 tbs crème fraîche
Salt and pepper to taste.
1 small tin sweetcorn (optional, but if you like a bit of crunch in your soups, as I do....).

Place the oil, and all the chopped vegetables, in a heavy-based pan, and allow to sweat for a bout 10-15 minutes, stirring cocasionally.  Then add the water and stock, bring to the boil and simmer for around 20 minutes. 

Blend until smooth, then return to pan and add the crème fraîche, cheese triangles and sweetcorn, if using.  Bring back to the boil, stirring, until the cheese has melted.  Serve at once. 

You could, of course, use grated Emmenthal or Cheddar instead of the cheese triangles, in which case I would add them to the soup bowl, rather than to the main body of the soup.  Or as well as.....

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Mushroom, pepper and cream sauce

This goes with steak or magret de canard - it would probably also go with salmon, or anything you fancy, really....

1 small or 1/2 large onion
1 clove garlic
1/2 punnet (c 125 g) button mushrooms, or 2 large field mushrooms
1 large tablespoonful crème fraiche
1 tsp each black and Szechuan peppercorns
2 tsp cognac, armagnac or Calvados (optional, but does add to it!)
A little butter for frying

Chop the onion, crush the garlic, and halve the mushrooms if they are small; larger ones can be cut into relevant-sized pieces. Fry the onions and garlic gently in the butter until transparent, then add the mushrooms and continue to cook until they release their juices. Meanwhile, crush the peppercorns coarsely in a pestle and mortar. Now add them, and the remaining ingredients, to the sauce, bring to the boil, and serve at once.