Thursday, January 22, 2015


When you plan winter meals, do the cooking in the afternoons and it will warm-up the kitchen and the aromas will float out the windows, welcoming the hungry family home. Nothing like home cooking, soups, a stew ,a quiche and casseroles, fresh bread and large platters of pasta.

Keep a supply of winter pastas, grains, lentils, oats, barley, wheat, rice, couscous, quinoa and burghul.
Soups can be made for a day or two at a time. Use family time to share the peeling of vegetables, cutting and creating pots of soup. When you teach a kid to make soup, they can use their skills when they go camping, hiking and simply for fun.
Use fresh herbs and delicate spices. Cool soups before you put them in the fridge. If you freeze them, label properly, names and date,. .

1 1/2 cup of lentils. I use mainly brown, and some orange thrown in too.
3 potatoes and 3 sweet potatoes.2 diced onions and 2 cloves garlic.
I cup of diced pumpkin and 1 whole peeled turnip that you remove at the end.
1 teaspoon of curry powder, salt and pepper. 1 Tablespoon of dried onions.

Rinse the lentils and drain.
Sautee the onions and garlic in 2 teaspoons olive oil on a low flame. Place everything in a large saucepan with all the vegetables that are peeled and diced. Bring to the boil on a medium flame and let it simmer for a minute or two and then turn the flame lower and let it cook for forty minutes. Cool and blend it all.
Serve it with a few tablespoons of chopped parsley or chives, a few peas or diced carrots sprinkled with a few sunflower seeds on the .top ,When you add the fresh vegetables at the end, they give the dish energy Try it and you will see it is delicious..


Wash and dice all the vegetables you have. Carrots, beans, pumpkin, potatoes, onions, garlic, leaves of parsley, fennel, a little cabbage, broccoli, spring onions and celery. Add three tablespoons barley, green split peas and rice. I put in some salt , pepper and a little paprika. There is a product made from vegetables, called MARMITE and this is a good flavor for soups. Use a teaspoon to a pot. I use dark miso and find it very tasty. When you use a stick of Kombu, remove it before the end. I like KOMBU, as it gives a balance to the soup.

Cook this with water on a medium flame until it boils. Lower and cook for 40 minutes. Cool and blend, leaving some vegetables whole in the plate of soup when you serve it. You can sprinkle a teaspoon of grated Parmesan cheese on the soup. A few chopped chives, sprigs of parsley and for parave meals, cut up squares of toast.

3 Cups of diced pumpkin, 4 diced potatoes, 2 onions, cut up into small pieces.
Sautee the onions in two teaspoon of olive oil. Place the onions, diced potatoes and pumpkin into 7 cups of water and bring to the boil.. Cook for 15 minutes and check that the vegetables are soft.. cool and blend them.
Add I cup yogurt, a pinch of curry powder and a teaspoon of grated ginger, or half a teaspoon of chives, parsley, some sunflower seeds and chunks of wholesome breads with herbed butters.

Winter meals are the best served with softer lights, colorful cloths, pretty serviettes and pots of herbs as centre. pieces of the table setting.

Serve the soups with little extras like gated cheese in a bowl, cut up squares of toast, herbed croutons and a few cut up boiled potatoes.
I make herbed croutons from left over breads. Just mix olive oil and oregano, basil and salt and pepper. Fry lightly in a pan and serve as a snack. Cooked chick peas, sprinkled with salt are another snack with soups.

Winter night are time to relax, just to sit a little longer, reflect, think and dream. Let the night be gentle, listen to music, read and take time to curl up and just be.

Love and light Rona

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