Tag Archives: vegetable soup

Smoked Bacon Soup with Kale and Quinoea

I’m so happy – I found kale ! After reading all your posts about how delicious it is, and how wonderfully nutritious it is, and the amazing recipes you share (eg kale chips which are being made as I type this), I FINALLY FOUND KALE. We went to Pasar Bella yesterday and bought an entire trunkfull of delicious meats, cheese and vegetables.

Today for lunch I made a vibrant, bursting-full-of-goodness soup, with a smoked bacon stock – making it bursting-full-of-flavour soup.

Again soups like this can be entirely adjusted depending on what vegetables you have handy in the fridge – I used yellow and purple carrots and the leaves of purple and green kale. The quinoea gives the soup an added protein boost.

Ingredients serves 6 for lunch or as a starter at dinner

  1. 400g smoked bacon bones
  2. 1 onion, diced
  3. 3 stalks celery, sliced
  4. 2 medium carrots, diced
  5. 1-2 bay leaves
  6. large handful kale leaves, stalks removed, thickly sliced
  7. 1/4 cup raw quinoea


  1. Brown the bacon bones on medium-high heat in a large, heavy-based saucepan
  2. Remove from pan reduce heat to medium and soften the onions for 5 minutes
  3. Add the celery and carrots and soften, an additional 5 minutes
  4. Add the bacon back to the pan, add the bay leaves
  5. Add water so that everything is just covered, and simmer on low for 2 hours
  6. Remove the bay leaves
  7. Add the quinoea and continue to simmer for 10 minutes
  8. Add the kale leaves and simmer for a final 5 minutes
  9. Season to taste with salt and pepper

Soupe au pistou

Inspired by Bliss Travel’s suggestion of using my basil pesto to make soupe au pistou, I raided my fridge for what vegetables I had on hand and et voila ! A delicious vegetable soup made even more delicious with the addition of the fragrant pesto. I spooned the pesto on top of my bowl before serving and let it slowly melt over the vegetables and into the soup to keep the flavour as fresh as possible. Alternatively you can add some to the soup and warm through before serving. Use my recipe below as a guide only – vegetable soup should be made from whatever is in season or, whatever is in your fridge.


  1. Smoked streaky bacon, cut into lardons
  2. 1 onion, roughly chopped
  3. 2 sticks of celery, sliced
  4. 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  5. 1 large leek, trimmed, washed and sliced
  6. handful of cherry tomatoes
  7. 1 cup dried puy lentils
  8. handful spinach leaves


  1. Fry bacon lardons over high heat in a large saucepan until crispy
  2. Reduce heat to medium and throw in onions, celery and carrot and stir so that all the vegetables are coated with the rendered fat from the bacon
  3. Gently fry for 5 minutes
  4. Add leeks and tomatoes and repeat steps 2-3
  5. Add lentils and repeat again
  6. Add enough water (or stock if you want but remember the pesto will add flavour to the soup) to cover the vegetables.
  7. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes
  8. Season at this stage but again remember there will be additional salt from the pesto
  9. Throw in the spinach leaves just before you are serving
  10. Ladle into soup bowl and top with a generous spoon of basil pesto

Meatball and tomato soup

Rich and hearty, this soup satisfied my want of a vegetable soup that had some substance. I always make big pots of soup to freeze as a convenient mid-week dinner but I think this soup would even improve in taste the next day. The meaty flavor would intensify overnight in the fridge.

Ingredients: (for 6-8 servings)
For the meatballs

  1. 300g mince beef
  2. 1 clove garlic, minced
  3. 1 egg
  4. Handful bread crumbs
  5. 2 tbl Worcester sauce
  6. Salt and pepper

For the soup

  1. 1 onion, finely chopped
  2. 1 carrot finely chopped
  3. 2 sticks celery finely chopped
  4. Splash white wine
  5. 1 tin tomato paste
  6. 800g tinned tomatoes
  7. Handful torn basil
  8. 1-2 cups chicken or beef stock, depending how thick you like it
  9. Cauliflower florets
  10. Broccoli florets


  1. Make the meatballs first. Mix all the ingredients together well and shape into bite sized balls
  2. Heat some oil in a large heavy-based pot and brown the balls in small batches. Don’t overcrowd the pan or you’ll end up boiling the meat instead of browning them
  3. Set browned meatballs aside in a bowl
  4. In the same pan that you cooked the meatballs in, add the white wine and bring to the boil to release the yummy bits left behind from the meatballs.  Then reduce the heat and add the onions, carrots and celery and gently sweat until softened.
  5. Add the tomato paste and stir to coat the vegetables
  6. Add the tinned tomatoes, stock and half the basil and simmer for 30-40 minutes
  7. Add the cauliflower and broccoli and season to taste
  8. Serve piping hot with some freshly torn basil on top