Soup is something of a passion at Avoca and this tasty recipe is ideal for autumn - great for when the kids come in from school - as it is both filling and bursting with goodness; and absolutely delicious served with some of our famous cheese soda bread
1 large onion chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 parsnip, peeled and chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
1 small sweet potato, peeled and chopped
½ butternut or similar squash, peeled and chopped
2.5oz orange lentils, rinsed under running cold water
1oz grams butter
2pts vegetable stock
½ red chilli, de-seeded and chopped
1in piece fresh root ginger, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons cream
- On a low heat, cook the onions in the butter in a large heavy bottom saucepan until they have started to soften and turn opaque in color, about 8–10 minutes.
- Add the vegetables, along with the chili and ginger, and cover with the stock, (you may need a little extra stock depending on the size and shape of your saucepan), ideally all your vegetables should be totally immersed with about 2inches extra stock.
- Simmer the soup until the vegetables are fully cooked. Then, immediately add the well rinsed lentils, bringing back to a simmer and cooking for a further 8-10 minutes by which stage the lentils should have burst and are cooked.
- Remove from the heat, add the freshly chopped thyme and liquidize until smooth, you may need to thin out with a little bit of extra stock, a couple of tablespoons of cream is also a lovely addition for a slightly richer texture and flavor.
Avoca’s Cheese Soda Bread
- Pre-heat oven to 400ºF.
- Simply mix together 1lb of plain flour, with a level teaspoon of sieved bread-soda , and a teaspoon of both salt and caster sugar.
- Add 3-4oz of grated mature cheddar, and about 1pt of buttermilk and mix gently until it all comes together, no need to knead, just pop it into a loaf tin that you have lined with baking parchment.
- Flatten out the top of the loaf with the palm of your hand, and then run a deep line down the center of the bread with an ordinary kitchen knife (this will help your bread to rise evenly in the oven).
- Bake in the oven for 40 minutes , then removing the loaf from the tin and return to the oven for a further 10 to 15 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
* Through its cafés, food markets and cookbooks, Avoca has led a revolution in Irish food, championing seasonal, locally-sourced ingredients and showcasing artisan food producers. It's a passion born out of its roots in 1723 when Avoca first started weaving its world-famous throws & blankets - and nurtured still in its stores, home-wares and fashion. Find more of the story at avoca.com. Join the Avoca community on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.