Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fighting the cold with soup and Spice: Spicy Sweet Potato Soup

The first snow this year

The weather forecast projected a rough drop in temperatures. The synoptics were right. The constant rain turned into snow last night and the trees are now bearing the heavy weight of 24 hours of snowfall. The lamp posts are wearing white chefs´ hats. I am not complaining at all. It is rare to have snow in town here, therefore I am happy for every moment when I see the snow falling.

The snow kept falling and falling...

This snow really came unexpected and like the cars I was still wearing "summer tyres" yesterday. Fortunately it only took me a few minutes to find my winter wear. What annoys me is if I am not dressed properly and feel the cold drilling its way into the bones.
In this situation the best is to rush to the grocery store, buy a chicken, some veggies and put the pot on to make chicken soup. Already the ancient Greeks considered that food was medicine and medicine was food.

Kaffir lime, I wish the photo could project the aroma

As a quick profylactic - while the chicken was simmering - I reached for ginger, chilli and lime (the green one). The cold is guaranteed to be replaced by a flame in the stomach and blush on the cheeks. If you can get hold of a kaffir lime, try this. Kaffir limes, like kaffir lime leaves, have a very specific aroma and taste.

Sweet potatoes
Spicy Sweet Potato Soup
Ingredients for 2:

2 tbsp cooking oil (eg. rape seed)
1 medium-small onion, chopped
2 sweet potatoes, cut into 1cm cubes
1 carrot, cut into 1cm cubes
(0.5dl white wine, optional)
1 tsp of freshly grated ginger
0.5 kaffir lime (or 0.5 standard green lime and a kaffir lime leaf)
1 chilli pod or spicy peperoncino
0.5 l stock or water
1dl fresh cream (eg. 15% fat content)
salt to taste
fresh parsley or coriander, finely chopped

Cooked sweet potatoes and spices

Heat the oil in a pan and fry the onions for a few minutes, then add the sweet potatoes and the carrot cubes. Cook at medium heat for ca 5 minutes, stirring every now and then. If you have some white wine at hand splash ca 5dl and let it evaporate. Then add the grated ginger, juice of the kaffir lime, the chilli or peperoncino pod as well as the "empty" lime peel and the stock or water. Cook at medium heat for 15-20 minutes until the vegetables are soft.

Puree with the hand mixer, at low heat mix in the fresh cream and taste. Add salt if necessary.
Serve with chopped parsley or coriander.

Spicy sweet potato soup