Wine Wednesday: Fennel Soup

Some time ago I received a few Swedish magazines, mostly targeted for middle-aged women, but decided to have a look in case they contained any interesting recipes. This soup was one of them. Originally this recipe called for shrimps, but we simply omitted them and veganised the rest of the recipe. In case you want something bitey in your soup, give tofu or maybe a small batch of white beans a try. Anyway, this is a really nice refreshing soup, where the fennel combined with the white wine brings out a really great taste.

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Creamy Fennel Soup

10 cm leek
1 fennel bulp
1 carrot
2 tbsp oil
3 dl white wine
6 dl water
1 bouillon cube
3 tbsp wheat flour
2 dl oat or soy cream
salt, pepper

Coarsely chop leek, fennel and carrot. Heat the oil in a pot and sauté the vegetables until leek is soft. Add wine, 5 dl water and bouillon cube to the pot and bring to boil. Mix the wheat flour with remaining 1 dl of water and slowly pour to the pot, stirring the soup at the same time. (Or mix the flour with vegetables before adding water or wine.) Cook 15 minutes or until vegetables are soft and puree with a blender. Add cream and heat thoroughly, season with salt and pepper.

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Improvised Curry

I usually make the dinner when I go visit my mother. She asked beforehand what ingredients she should buy, but I didn’t have any idea of what I’d make, so she just bought something she thought I could use. She had lentils and rice in her pantry and eggplant in her fridge and I made this curry. I mixed toasted peanuts with the rice, but plain rice would be good too.

Eggplant and Lentil Curry

3 tbsp oil
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp mustard seeds
2 (or 3) tbsp mild curry paste
1 small onion
5-10 cm piece of leek
1 big carrot
1 eggplant
4 dl cooked lentils
1-2 dl water

Cut the leek half lengthwise and rinse well, slice. Chop the onion coarsely, dice the carrot and cut the eggplant in bite size chunks. Heat the oil in a large pan and fry cumin and mustard seeds about 30 seconds. Add curry paste, onion and leek and fry a minute or two. Add carrot, turn the heat on medium and simmer about 5 minutes. Add the eggplant, cover the pan with lid and simmer until eggplant is soft. Stir occasionally. Finally add the lentils and enough water to make the curry little more sauce like. Heat thoroughly and serve over rice.

Cooking for Allergic People

I was invited to a class mate’s surprice birthday party. It was a potluck party and I promised to bring a savoury dish, but making something that everyone can eat wasn’t so easy. For example gluten, yeast and nuts were forbidden and it had to be something that wasn’t too weird for omnis. Luckily soy was allowed and I started to think of a pie with tofu based filling. I made a practice pie couple of days earlier with tofu, bell pepper, carrot and celery and realiced it was very similar to a cottage cheese pie that I had made quite a few times in my past. The taste of celery was too strong and I substituted it with leek and used more bell pepper in the final product. I guess the omnis liked my pie, since everyone took second or third slice.

Tofu, Leek and Bell Pepper Pie

Crust
125g margarine
1 dl rolled oats*
1 dl soy flour
1,5 dl potato flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp water
margarine for greasing the dish
sesame seeds or gluten free bread crumbs (optional)

Filling
250g tofu
1 tsp dill
1 tsp parsley
2 tsp basil
0,5-1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp apple vinegar
1 garlic clove
1 small red bell pepper
10 cm piece of leek
2 tbsp potato flour
2,5 dl soy milk
2 tbsp oil

Mix the margarine, soy flour, rolled oats, potato flour and baking powder with your hands until it’s crumbly. Add water and mix. Greace a pie dish (25-27 cm diameter) and sprinkle with sesame seeds or bread crumbs if you want to make sure the crust doesn’t stick to the dish. Spread the dough to the dish with your hands and bake in 225 celsius degrees 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile crumble the tofu to a bowl with your hand. Add herbs, salt, pepper and vinegar and cumble until it’s quite smooth. Cube the bell pepper, chop the leek and mince the garlic and add them and the potato flour to the tofu mixture and mix well. Last stir in soy milk and oil. Spread the filling on the prebaked crust and bake 25-30 minutes more.

*Some coeliacs can eat only “clean” oats that are not processed at the same place as wheat and other grains that include gluten.

You CAN Make An Omelet Without Breaking Eggs

I planned serving a brunch on Saturday, but we slept late and had to go to a pub at noon to see a gig, so we ended up having the “brunch” after lunch time. I had planned serving pea muffins, Waldorf salad, Chickpea omelet and a bigger version of broccoli pie, but I skipped the pie, because there were fewer eaters than I had thought. We drank Mimosas and since it’s a fruity drink and Waldorf salad also contains fruits, I thought serving fruits or dessert wasn’t necessary. The omelet was filled with soy sausage and leeks, but other fillings are good too.

Vegan Omelet

1,5 dl chickpea flour
1 tsp baking powder
0,5 tsp salt
0,5 tsp turmeric
0,5 tsp paprika
1, 5 dl water
2 tbsp oil for frying

Fillings of you choice: sliced soy sausage, chopped leek, thinly sliced onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, seitan, corn, herbs etc.

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Pour the water to the bowl and whisk together. Add the fillings and stir. heat the oil in a frying pan, pour an even layer of batter to the pan and fry on medium heat until the top of the omelet is thickened and the edges are dry. Flip and fry couple of minutes on the other side or until golden brown.