Growing up I have always been drawn to the smells coming out of my grandmother’s kitchen. She made cooking look so easy. I could smell the bright green, yellow and red peppers frying, and the fresh orange and lemons being grated into a fluffy cake. It made my mouth water every time.
There I was - a young adult spending countless hours (and all my sanity) fighting meals into submission. It wasn’t until I had a family of my own to feed, that I decided to give the whole cooking experience another shot. I know very well the time and effort it takes to prepare a meal, as I am sure you ladies can agree – often the results have not met with our expectations. For some reason my grandmother excelled at every opportunity. Her cooking genius inspired my passion in the kitchen, as well as my love for all things coconut. I would like to share one of those favorite recipes with you now.
There is nothing better to do during the cold winter months, than to stir a thick creamy soup in the kitchen and seeing how the fragrant smoke drifts up and swirls around into the lounge area.
Soups are a good way to substitute meals during the cold winter days as they are filled with nutrients, making them a convenient meal for the entire family. You could also serve it in small portions as a starter meal when you have visitors over. It warms up your entire body and satisfies any hunger. The best thing about soups? They are cost effective and simple enough to make once you get the hang of it. They are great for bigger families, or smaller families regardless of your budgetary requirements. It definitely won’t break the bank – in fact it’s cheaper than cooking a big meal!
While this Thai coconut soup takes a few short minutes to make once all the ingredients are cooked, I prefer to stand in front of the stove so that I can see and hear the soft popping sounds coming from the pot.
Don’t worry about left overs. Once you’re done eating, the remainder of your soup can be dished out into a freezer friendly container, left to cool down, then sealed and put away in the freezer for another day.
You can save precious time by freezing a few dishes of soup in serving size containers. I freeze for up to 2 weeks, but most veggie soups can go longer if they are sealed properly.
Without further a-do, here is the recipe.
Thai coconut soup ingredients: (Serves 4-6)
1. Place a large pot filled ¾ with hot water on the stove.
2. Set stove to high and wait for the water to boil.
3. Gently place your chopped potatoes into the pot (avoid splashing as this can result in serious burns).
4. Place the diced leaks on top of the potatoes in the pot.
5. Add the diced onions.
6. Once all the ingredients above are in, add the coconut oil, cayenne, turmeric and salt.
7. Do not stir the ingredients in the pot.
8. Place the lid on, and leave to cook for 25 minutes or until most of the water has cooked away and the potatoes are mushy.
9. Add the coconut milk with 2-3 cup of warm water and simmer on medium heat for a further 15 minutes. (Do not let it cook dry, if the water level runs below the veggies, add a cup of warm water.
10. Using a mashing utensil or stick blender – Mash the ingredients in the pot together, making sure there are no lumps of potatoes.
11. Add the cream and stir in slowly until it’s thick and creamy.
12. Let the soup simmer on low heat for 10 minutes and mash again.
13. Remove from the stove top and serve with freshly chopped spring onion or parsely and a French loaf with butter on the side.
If you prefer a meaty taste with your soup, I highly recommend diced bacon bits fried to a crisp. You can sprinkle the bacon bits onto the soup in your plate and top it off with a sprig of fresh parsley to complete the look. This potato soup does especially well with bacon, and the sweet coconut fragrance will have you coming back for more.
If you are like me, and you want your food to look good; (I enjoy eating a meal that looks good as well as tastes great) take a few minutes and pay special attention to presentation. Play with colours to spruce up an otherwise dull looking meal.
For alternatives you can add a variety of veggies to this recipe. A simple example will be a coconut chicken soup using; potatoes, chopped carrots, green beans and marrows. Cook for half an hour – 45 minutes on high until all the veggies are cooked and finally add the spiced and cooked deboned chicken breasts chopped into squares. Place them in the pot of water in the order I’ve mentioned above. Do not stir until water level has reduced and been topped up again. Add a pct. of ready-made chicken soup granules in 100ml cold water and continue following the recipe for the potato and leek soup by adding the cream and milk with butter etc. and stirring often. To make the chicken vegetable soup you do not require a mashing utensil.
Either way, you cannot go wrong with this all-time favourite recipe. Dish up and enjoy!
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