Sugared Grapes

This is a fun recipe. Super easy and beautiful. Every one will enjoy it, especially children. So obviously star of this recipe is grape. You can choose red- dark purple, or green grapes. Basically it is coating the grapes with sugar. You can use regular granulated sugar or coloured flavoured sugar.

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All are beautiful. With granulated sugar you can make grapes like frosted grapes and with coloured sugar you make your grapes like precious gem stones.

They are so good in parties, or on the cakes or with turkey meals.

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Ingredients

  • Bunches of grapes: red, green grapes
  • Apple juice
  • Sugar (coloured or granulated sugar)

How to make it?????

Wash the grapes. So, You can garnish them as a bunch of grapes or just one by one.

Dip grapes in the apple juice. Then, put them in the sugar and coat them.

Do not put grapes in the refrigerator, simply keep them in room temperature and enjoy them.

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Sugared Grapes

 

Ingredients

Bunches of grapes: red, green grapes

Apple juice

Sugar (coloured or granulated sugar)

 

How to make it?????

Wash the grapes. So, You can garnish them as a bunch of grapes or just one by one.

Dip grapes in the apple juice. Then, put them in the sugar and coat them.

Do not put grapes in the refrigerator, simply keep them in room temperature and enjoy them.

Falafel

Falafel is one the most favourite fast foods in the Middle East. Falafel is an Arabic word,and plural ‘ filfil’ meaning “pepper”. Falafel is a meatless food and good source of protein and suitable for vegetarians.

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Originally it is spicy but in any country it has adjusted based on the taste of people. Falafel is made of chickpeas or fava beans. Egyptians make falafe with fava beans and sometimes with combination of both. But if you make with chickpeas, they should be soaked and then should be ground up or mashed and mix with beautiful spices and vegetables such as onions, garlic parsley.

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Falafe serves with flat bread ( Naan ), pita bread, or Budget bread and garnished with different things such as tomato, cucumber, lettuce, fresh herbs, tahini sauce, spicy sauce, humus, chutney, garlic yogurt. Or they are just perfect on their own.
Falafel can be eaten cold or hot. This chickpea balls are mostly popular in S and SW of Iran but in other cities of country such as Tehran is very popular too.

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Ingredients

  • 450 g chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 1 1/2 tbsp  plain flour or chickpeas flour
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 large onion
  • A bunch of parsley
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 2tsp cumin
  • 1tsp coriander powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Oil

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Ingredients for mint-parsley sauce

  • 3 tbsp plain yogurt
  • Small bunch of mint and parsley
  • 1 small bell pepper
  • Salt to taste

 

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Preparation
If you want your falafel to turn out right, you need to soak dried chickpeas overnight. So they will be double in size. Next day, drain and rinse them. Pour chickpeas into a food processor. Then add all ingredients ( except flour)  for falafel into the food processor and make smooth mixture.

 

Then add flour and   season the chickpeas mixture with all above mentioned spices. Mix all together very well. Using wet hands or a falafel scoop, form falafel mixture into round balls or oval shape. By the way,  If you wish, sprinkle some sesame seeds on each chickpeas ball too .Then place chickpea balls in the fridge for 1-2 hours.

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Falafel is traditionally fried but you can bake it instead too. So bake falafel in 175 C degree oven for 15-20 minutes.
And if you want to fry falafel, add enough oil for deep frying in a deep saucepan. Place the pot over a high heat and heat the oil, then drop falafel balls in the oil and fry until brown ( 7-8 minutes).


For making sauce, you need to place all ingredients for sauce in a blender and make a smooth sauce.

 


When all falafels are fried. You can serve them plain or Wrap 3-4 of falafels in a pita bread, topping with sauce and enjoy it.

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Falafel

Ingredients
300 g chickpeas, soaked overnight
2 cloves of garlic
1 large onion.
A bunch of parsley
Salt – pepper to taste
1 tsp turmeric
1tsp coriander powder
Oil
Ingredients for mint-parsley sauce
3 tbsp. plain yogurt
Small bunch of mint and parsley
1 small bell pepper
Salt to taste
Preparation
If you want your falafel to turn out right, you need to soak dried chickpeas overnight. So they will be double in size. Next day, drain and rinse them. Pour chickpeas into a food processor. Then add all ingredients for falafel into the food processor and make smooth mixture.
Then add and season the chickpeas mixture with all above mentioned spices. Mix all together very well. using wet hands or a falafel scoop, form falafel mixture into round balls .Then place chickpea balls in the fridge for 1-2 hours.
Falafel is traditionally fried but you can bake it instead too. So bake falafel in 175 C degree oven for 15-20 minutes.
And if you want to fry falafel, add enough oil for deep frying in a deep saucepan. Place the pot over a high heat and heat the oil, then drop falafel balls in the oil and fry until brown ( 7-8 minutes).
For making sauce, you need to place all ingredients for sauce in a blender and make a smooth sauce.
When all falafels are fried. You can serve them plain or Wrap 3-4 of falafels in a pita bread, topping with sauce and enjoy it.

Aubergine Pirogue

The meaty aubergine or eggplant with earthy taste is brilliant as ingredient in stew, curry, salad, stuffed, roasted, grilled or deep fried.

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The following aubergine recipe is a simple vegetarian dish full of flavour and delicious plus pretty easy to prepare it.

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Ingredients

  • 4-5 large aubergines, sliced lengthwise

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, finely chopped

  • 1 medium yellow bell pepper, finely chopped

  • 1 ½ cups cooked rice

  • 100 g Parmesan cheese, grated

  • small bunch of parsley, finely chopped

  • small bunch of spring onion, finely chopped

  • ½ tsp dried mint

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • Vegetable oil

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How to make it??

Slice and place aubergines in a colander. Then sprinkle salt over it and allow it to drain for 1 hour. Salt draws out excess moisture and the bitterness. After an hour rinse the eggplant under cold water to remove the excess salt and pat it dry.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

In a large skillet, heat the oil and add the eggplant slices. Allow to fry until golden and set aside.

In a large bowl with cooked rice, add chopped bell peppers, herbs, cheese, and spices. Mix until combine well.

In a tart mould set eggplant slices (overlap them a little, as you see in the photos).

Then cover base of the tart mould with eggplant slices too. Now spread rice mixture in the mould. With a spoon press down the rice. Place 3-4 eggplant slices on the top centre of the rice and fold up aubergine slices as you see in the photos.

Put the mould in the oven and allow to bake for about 30 minutes. Then remove from the oven, let it to cool for 5 minutes and then turn the tin up side down.

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Cut the eggplant pirogue into the pieces and serve it with tortilla bread and garlic-yogurt mixture.

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Aubergine piroque

Ingredients

  • 4-5 large aubergines, sliced lengthwise

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, finely chopped

  • 1 medium yellow bell pepper, finely chopped

  • 1 ½ cups cooked rice

  • 100 g Parmesan cheese, grated

  • small bunch of parsley, finely chopped

  • small bunch of spring onion, finely chopped

  • ½ tsp dried mint

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • Vegetable oil

How to make it??

Slice and place aubergines in a colander. Then sprinkle salt over it and allow it to drain for 1 hour. Salt draws out excess moisture and the bitterness. After an hour rinse the eggplant under cold water to remove the excess salt and pat it dry.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

In a large skillet, heat the oil and add the eggplant slices. Allow to fry until golden and set aside.

In a large bowl with cooked rice, add chopped bell peppers, herbs, cheese, and spices. Mix until combine well.

In a tart mould set eggplant slices (overlap them a little, as you see in the photos). Then cover base of the tart mould with eggplant slices too. Now spread rice mixture in the mould. With a spoon press down the rice. Place 3-4 eggplant slices on the top centre of the rice and fold up aubergine slices as you see in the photos.

Put the mould in the oven and allow to bake for about 30 minutes. Then remove from the oven, let it to cool for 5 minutes and then turn the tin up side down.  Cut the eggplant pirogue into the pieces and serve it with tortilla bread and garlic-yogurt mixture.

Vegetarian kebab

This is one of the  tastiest vegetarian kebabs which is made with bread and vegetabls. It is simple but super tasty and easy to make it, with crispy texture, golden outside and fulllllllllllll of flavour. You may serve it with yogurt, sweet chilli sauce, any kind of chutney or ketchup.

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Ingredients

  • 5 slices of fresh white or brown bread
  • 1 cup chickpeas, cooked
  • 1 onion
  • 1 lemon juice
  • Handful fresh mint leaves
  • Handful fresh coriander leaves
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic
  • Small piece of fresh ginger
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp Olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

How to make it???

Put slices of bread into a food processor or blender and blend it until crush and look like soft bread crumbs and set aside.

Put cooked chickpeas into a mixing bowl. Add onion, garlic, ginger, mint and coriander leaves, lemon juice, yogurt and oil to the chickpeas. Blend until become purée. Add puree mixture and all spices to the bread crumbs, mix until combine well.

Grease your hand, take a small portion of mixture and roll it like a hot dog, however you can give ball shape or cutlet/ round burger shape too. Once all kebabs are done, you may push the wooden sticks into the kebab . it ‘s just optional.

Now heat the oil or butter in a saucepan. Place kebabs into the pan and fry for 3-4 minutes, until golden crispy.

Serve it with your favourite sauce.

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Vegetarian kebab

Ingredients

  • 5 slices of fresh white or brown bread
  • 1 cup chickpeas, cooked
  • 1 onion
  • 1 lemon juice
  • Handful fresh mint leaves
  • Handful fresh coriander leaves
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic
  • Small piece of fresh ginger
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp Olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

How to make it???

Put slices of bread into a food processor or blender and blend it until crush and look like soft bread crumbs and set aside.

Put cooked chickpeas into a mixing bowl. Add onion, garlic, ginger, mint and coriander leaves, lemon juice, yogurt and oil to the chickpeas. Blend until become purée. Add puree mixture and all spices to the bread crumbs, mix until combine well.

Grease your hand, take a small portion of mixture and roll it like a hot dog, however you can give ball shape or cutlet/ round burger shape too.

Once all kebabs are done, you may push the wooden sticks into the kebab . it ‘s just optional.

Now heat the oil or butter in a saucepan. Place kebabs into the pan and fry for 3-4 minutes, until golden crispy.

Serve it with your favourite sauce.

 

Eggplant dish (Bademjan dish)

If you are eggplant( aubergine) lover, you know eggplant is delicious in a curry, or stew, on the barbecue , as a fried dish, as a salad or as a jam. This is a mouthwatering eggplant recipe which is a warm vegetable dish.

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If you are interested in eggplant , I have more recipes , such as: Persian eggplant jam, Persian eggplant stew with chicken, deep fried eggplant, eggplant onion with tomato sauce, Turkish grilled eggplant salad, Persian eggplant dip ( kashk-e bademjan) , eggplant rice which are available in my web page.

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Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut lengthwise
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 larger onion, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and grated
  • Small bunch of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • Greek yogurt
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil

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How to make it??

Dice all vegetables into the pieces. Lay the pieces of eggplant in a colander, sprinkle lightly with salt and set aside for 30 minutes to draw the moisture and bitterness out of the eggplant. It also helps the eggplant stay shapely when is cooking instead of becoming soggy.

Before cooking rinse the aubergine under cold water to remove the excess salt and then press the eggplant between kitchen towels.

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place eggplant pieces in hot oil and fry 3-4 minutes until aubergines are nice and golden brown.

I love fried aubergines. That’s why I could not resist and made a small bite of fried eggplant and ate it 🙂

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In the same skillet, add chopped carrots, bell pepper and onion. Cook and tossing occasionally until vegetables are tender, it will take about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat. Add fried eggplants to the vegetables and mix together.

Mix tomato paste with a cup of water and turmeric. Pour on the fried veggies, add tomatoes and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 15 minutes . Turn off the heat and let to sit for 10 minutes to develop more flavor.

Serve the dish with a mixture of yogurt with grated garlic.

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Eggplant dish

 

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut lengthwise
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 larger onion, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and grated
  • Small bunch of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • Greek yogurt
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil

How to make it??

Dice all vegetables into the pieces. Lay the pieces of eggplant in a colander, sprinkle lightly with salt and set aside for 30 minutes to draw the moisture and bitterness out of the eggplant. It also helps the eggplant stay shapely when is cooking instead of becoming soggy.

Before cooking rinse the aubergine under cold water to remove the excess salt and then press the eggplant between kitchen towels. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place eggplant pieces in hot oil and fry 3-4 minutes until aubergines are nice and golden brown. In the same skillet, add chopped carrots, bell pepper and onion. Cook and tossing occasionally until vegetables are tender, it will take about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat. Add fried eggplants to the vegetables and mix together.

Mix tomato paste with a cup of water and turmeric. Pour on the fried veggies, add tomatoes and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 15 minutes . Turn off the heat and let to sit for 10 minutes to develop more flavor. Serve the dish with a mixture of yogurt with grated garlic.

Potato Samosa

 Samosa or as we say in Farsi sambose  is a fried , boiled or baked pastry with different filling such as vegetables, meat and spices.

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Nowadays, samosa is a  very popular dish in most of countries. In my country Iran, In South and East of country  samosa is a snack but  in old days it was as a main course in Khorasan  province( East) of Iran. Preparing this dish is very easy .

Ingredients

Filo pastry
2 cooked boiled potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
Small bunch of parsley
½ tsp turmeric powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. flour
butter
Oil

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Preparation

Finely chop parsley. Heat the oil in a pan. Add chopped potatoes, parsley, turmeric, season with salt and chilli. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
Mix 2 tbsp .flour with 2-3 tbsp. water and set aside.

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Brush melted butter on a sheet of filo pastry. Put one full spoon of potato mixture on filo pastry and roll it. Do not overfill because will be difficult to roll up. Then, apply flour glue on two ends of rolled filo and fold it upon, and seal two ends properly. Repeat with remaining of ingredients.
Heat the oil in a pan and deep fry rolled pastries until golden brown. Drain on paper towel to get rid of extra oil. Serve this tasty crunchy samosa with pickled jalapeno .

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Samosa

Ingredients

Filo pastry
2 cooked boiled potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
Small bunch of parsley
½ tsp turmeric powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. flour
butter
Oil

Preparation

Finely chop parsley. Heat the oil in a pan. Add chopped potatoes, parsley, turmeric, season with salt and chilli. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
Mix 2 tbsp .flour with 2-3 tbsp. water and set aside.

Brush melted butter on a sheet of filo pastry. Put one full spoon of potato mixture on filo pastry and roll it. Do not overfill because will be difficult to roll up. Then, apply flour glue on two ends of rolled filo and fold it upon, and seal two ends properly. Repeat with remaining of ingredients.
Heat the oil in a pan and deep fry rolled pastries until golden brown. Drain on paper towel to get rid of extra oil. Serve this tasty crunchy samosa with pickled jalapeno .

Chocolate Covered Date Pops

I like call these beauties golden and sliver dates. They are healthy and good source of fibre and vitamins.

Persian dates are called ‘ Khorma  ; in Farsi, however other words such as Nakhl and Rotab  are used too. Dates are grown and cultivated in South and East of Iran. From a historical point of view, it is estimated that the date palm was cultivated in Iran about the 3rd millennium BC . Archaeological evidence shows that there were signs of date trees in stamps from the Elamites period.

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Iran is one of the most important producers of dates in the world and more than 400 types of dates are known in Iran.

Some dates are soft, dark and fleshy with high moisture and wet. Some are semi dried

The colour of dates varies from light brown to dark brown. Dates have different shapes, some are long and slender, some are round shape.

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The Mazafati مضافتی fresh dates are one of the most famous and best tasting dates in Iran. Other type of very good quality Iranian date that are soft, slender and super tasty is called Piarom پیارم . The surface skin of piarom is very thin and clings to the date flesh.

In Iranian cuisine we use dates as an ingredient in main meals or stew, such as date-pilaf, egg-date for making snacks and desserts such as cookies, date pastry and cakes. Recipes to use dates are beyond the imagination. They are excellent to eat as they are . Dates contain good fibre and sugar.

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Ingredients

  • Dates
  • white chocolate
  • Dark chocolate
  • Some nuts such as walnuts, peanuts butter, almond or pistachio
  • lollipop sticks
  • Edible golden/silver luster dust
  • Desiccated coconut

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Instructions

remove the pit from date. Stuff it with nuts. Take one of the lollipops stick and insert into the date up to top of the date. Use your fingers and tightly close the date.

Melt white and dark chocolate separately. Dip the date into the melted chocolate until fully covered. Continue doing same process with reaming dates. Set them in a stand and put them in the fridge for 30 minutes until set completely and at the end spray golden or silver luster dust on dates and make them double lovely. You might be cover dates with coconut.

 

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Chocolate covered date pops

 

Ingredients

  • Dates
  • white chocolate
  • Dark chocolate
  • Some nuts such as walnuts, peanuts butter, almond or pistachio
  • lollipop sticks
  • Edible golden/silver luster dust
  • Desiccated coconut

 

Instructions

remove the pit from date. Stuff it with nuts. Take one of the lollipops stick and insert into the date up to top of the date. Use your fingers and tightly close the date.

Melt white and dark chocolate separately. Dip the date into the melted chocolate until fully covered. Continue doing same process with reaming dates. Set them in a stand and put them in the fridge for 30 minutes until set completely and at the end spray golden or silver luster dust on dates and make them double lovely. You might be cover dates with coconut

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My Yogurt Balls

Hi my dear page visitors. I am just in love with these yogurt balls. Aren’t they gorgeous? They look like jewels. Very healthy, light and tasty snacks. It is fantastic when you see how easy yogurt transform into these tasty balls.

Once you made your yogurt balls , you may keep plain yogurt balls in a jar with some olive oil or topping and serve them.

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For making these tasty yogurt balls you would need to get rid of yogurt liquid and I made it with traditional method, as you would see in the following recipe. Also you have myriad choices for topping from dried herbs to seeds and nuts.

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Ingredients

  • 500g Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp salt

For topping

  • Dried herbs such as: dill, mint, oregano, chives,
  • Smoked paprika
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Chilli flakes
  • Dried rose petals
  • Chopped walnuts

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Instructions

Stir salt into the yogurt . Pour the yogurt into a double layer of cheesecloth or kitchen cloth. Tied up the corners.. Hang it over a bowl and leave to drain for 24 hours, until all liquid left in the bowl and strain away.

That’s all you have to do . Resulting is a thick and creamy yogurt.

Shape it into little balls and roll in a topping your choice.

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Fruit Leather ( Persian Lavashak )

I remember in my childhood my aunties always used to make fruit leathers in traditional way in large trays and leave them outside in the garden or on the roof of their house in the sun for several days to dry out.

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You do not even need to have perfect fruit, so if there is some bruised fruits, just cut bad part and throw away and just chop them, blend them , mix them with honey or lemon juice and let them dry.

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Fruit leather which is called Lavashak  in Persian language is super easy to make and is a healthy snack. You can make fruit leather with kiwi, mango, apple, prunes, plum, peach,.. …

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If you like sweet taste would add honey or if you prefer sour taste simply add some lime/lemon juice.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cups Mango, chopped
  • 3 cups plums
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp honey

 

Instructions

Heat the oven to 120C

put chopped mango into a blender and puree it until smooth. Taste it if you want to be sweeter add 1 tbsp honey or on the contrary if you want to have sour fruit leather, add one 1-2 tbsp lime or lemon juice. pour the puréed mixture onto a lined baking sheet ( either silicone or parchment paper).

With a spatula spread it or simply shake the tray and spread the puree in the baking tray.

You need to slowly dry out the fruit leather, so be patient and Place the baking tray in the oven and let the fruit purée dry out. Typically it will take 3-4 hours to dry out and when the surface of fruit leather is smooth and not sticky, it means fruit leather is ready.

Once it is done allow to set at room temperature for 1 hour. When the fruit leather is ready, using a cuter and cut it into stripes and roll it .

They would be perfectly safe to store in the fridge for long time.

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Potato Soup

With few ingredients you can create a lush and delicious home made comfort potato soup.

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Ingredients

  • 400 g potatoes, peeled and diced into small pieces
  • 100 g onion, finely chopped
  • 4-5 spring onions ( green part)
  • 900 ml vegetable stock
  • 120 ml cold milk
  • 50 g butter
  • Salt and chilli flakes to taste

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Instructions

Melt the butter in a pan. Add chopped potatoes and onion. Sauté them until softened. Then remove them to a pot. Add chopped spring onions, vegetable stocks, milk and season with salt and chilli flakes. Gently stir and allow to cook for 15 minutes.

Purée the soup, garnish it with freshly chopped herbs and drops of olive oil and serve it.

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