Parsnip and Garlic Soup

Miranda has challenged me to cook 12 new (to me) vegetarian dishes this year. 6 of them must be vegan, and 6 of them must involve a fake meat of some kind. (Obviously, I could/almost certainly will do something that ticks both boxes.) . I thought I’d write them up as I go, for no particular reason.

Here’s the first. You will need:

  • About a kilo of parsnips.
  • 2-3 large onions.
  • One bulb of garlic.
  • Store cupboard ingredients.

Chop the parsnips into roughly one inch chunks. I didn’t bother peeling them. Peel the garlic cloves. Toss them all together in a roasting tin with olive oil, and any extra herbs/spices you fancy. (I used rosemary and thyme, because I had some fresh ones as leftovers, but I think you could vary the spicing on this wildly.) . Bung that in a 180-degree fan oven to roast.

While they’re roasting, finely slice the onions. Throw them in a stockpot/whatever large saucepan you’re making the soup in with olive oil, and a bit of sugar and salt. If you’re like me, throw a star anise in there, too. Cover, leave to sweat on a medium heat. Stir occasionally so they don’t stick.

It’ll take about 20-30 mins to roast the parsnips. Depending on how fast you sliced the onions, they’ll be done about the same time – you want the onions just to be colouring slightly. Fish out the star anise, then add roasted parsnips and garlic to the onions. Add 1.5 litres of hot veg stock. Leave to simmer for a bit, then blend them all up. If it’s too thick, let it down with more veg stock.

I finished this off with some oat cream, chilli flakes, and a tiny splash of liquid smoke.

Makes enough for 4-6 portions.

2019 In Review

The world is on fire. Absolute bastards are hell bent on reducing the country I live in (and many other) to ruins, and stripping my generation, and those that come after us, of all the rights and privileges that our parents enjoyed.

So with all that taken as read: I really can’t look back on 2019 with anything other than happiness.

I’ve had a good year. I was hoping for a more settled and stable year than I had in 2018, and I absolutely got that. I’ve spent time with family and friends both old and new, I’ve enjoyed my job, I’ve been generally happy with how I’ve spent my spare time, and most importantly of all, Miranda and I got back together, and are actively planning for a future together, and I don’t have words for how happy I am about that. (That’s a lie. I do. I’m really really happy about that. No, happier than that. And happier than that, too.)

I can’t say I’m looking forward to 2020 on a global scale, but on a small and personal level, I’m really excited for the year to come.

I know that not everyone is as fortunate as I am, and that many people have had a shit year, or are staring down the barrel of a rough year ahead, or both. I hope things will improve soon.

I hope that when the time comes to take stock at the end of 2020, we can all find ourselves happier than we are today.

Links for Tuesday June 18th 2019

  • Guardian Firewall – Guardian Firewall
    This looks really good. Not cheap, but I am disposed to like a company that says "For the lifetime of our company, Guardian Firewall will utilize a simple tried-and-true business model: Accepting currency for a product that people find valuable. Full stop. We will never track our users. We will never collect personal information about our users. We consider user data to be a liability. Each and every technical design decision is built around that concept. "