You may or may not know I like to cook in bulk.
Earlier in the week I opened my freezer to find six green curries, three coconut and tomato curries, three lentil bolognese and two vegan cottage pies.
Yes that is a little excessive for a someone that cooks for one, but it’s the way I work best. I find it far more difficult to cook for just one person. How could one person have a whole can of coconut milk or whole can of chopped tomatoes? Granted, there are days I could easily polish this off, but for an average day and an average person, this is plenty.
Once you add in the numerous amounts of vegetables from the market I buy – that’s a lot of produce. As someone who can’t stand food waste, I try my best to use this up as efficiently as possible, but admittedly there are days food gets thrown out. Luckily I have my animal dustbins, aka Lewish and Ham who will polish off any veggies they can sink their piranha style teeth into.
Back when Veganuary was in full swing, the fresh veg specialists Abel and Cole sent me a lovely ‘Souping’ box to test out. If you haven’t heard of these guys, they send organic veggie boxes by post using a lovely mix of seasonal produce – perfect if you’re a vegetarian or love to embrace your greens.
I was sampling something new that they were introducing – the Superb Souping Box. This may sound like a ‘diet’ style box, but I can assure you it isn’t. Healthy and good for you? Of course, but my box contained a mix of organic fresh vegetables, herbs and spices, cans and stock cubes (gluten free and vegan may I add). Attached were three little recipe cards, which explained how many of each vegetable I’d need and some simple steps to cook them.
What struck me at first, was although my box looked like typical foods I’d cook with, the recipes sounded different, with an unusual twist to typical soups.
Listed were –
Leek Potato & Almond
Carrot and Blood Orange
Roast Aubergine & Tomato
All sounded delicious, and what’s great is there’s enough for two portions of each soup, so as a freezer fiend, I was pretty chuffed.
The Carrot and Blood Orange was by far my favourite, as the flavours were so unusual. I’d never really think to add a blood orange to soup, but boy did it make an incredible difference, providing a new element to a traditional carrot soup. The fresh citrus scent filled my flat for hours, and the consistency was perfect for GF bread dunking.
Equally the Leek, Potato & Almond was delicious, but nearly exploded in my blender – don’t use hot liquid in a blender, kids! I think I need to get myself a proper hand blender. It was great to mix things up with some toasted almonds atop.
If you’re the type of person that likes a bit of food prep, that likes to walk away and get on with some jobs, these recipes are perfect. They provide enough chopping and preparation to make you feel proud of cooking from scratch, but don’t require constant kitchen attention. Leave them on the hob to simmer away and get on with some jobs or sit and put your feet up.
I didn’t get round to making the tomato and aubergine soup, as the experimenter inside me instead added to coconut milk to make a spicy tomato curry! That’s the great thing about these boxes. They provide the exact ingredients you need for each soup, so you’re not buying heaps of fresh herbs that are going to wither and die in a few days. Likewise, boxes are versatile, so if you want to go off the beaten track and do something a little different from the recipe, it’s totally doable.
Nosing on the website, these boxes seem to change every week, so you’re constantly given new ingredients and new soups to try, providing a great way to experiment with soups and try something a little different from your typical choice, or watery supermarket soup. No two weeks will be the same!
I’d definitely recommend giving them a try, even as a one off. Improve you cooking by learning different flavour combinations and ways to use up certain ingredients. Check out all their boxes here, as well as some pretty good offers for your first order.
Big thanks to Abel & Cole for my complimentary delivery. As always all opinions are my own, and a product or service wouldn’t be on this blog if I didn’t love it.