The cheese & mustard scones of winter

A hot, savoury, cheesy mouthful of scone, with chunks of cold butter melting into the crumb and dripping onto the plate. What could be better to warm chilled fingers and soothe the soul on a cold, wet London evening?

Mine were dunked into a steaming leek, butternut and bean soup, but these beauties could be eaten with anything. Or on their own, as you please.


Leek and potato soup

It’s dark, cold and wet out there in London, so I’m breaking out the leek and potato soup with crusty bread for supper.

This was the very first soup that I learned to make, back in my twenties. In those days I’d liquidise and sieve it for perfect creamy smoothness, but now I feel that life is too short, and just leave it chunky.

This soup couldn’t get any simpler – four ingredients, and that’s it – potatoes, leeks, stock and creme fraiche. You could replace the creme fraiche with almond or soya milk to make this totally vegan.

Despite its simplicity, this is delicious, comforting and economical. The pot I made has fed two of us for two meals.

Let the wintery rain fall – as long as I have a bowl of homemade soup, I’m happy.

Chunky root vegetable soup

A morning has been spent happily gathering and chopping carrots, swede, leeks, sweet potatoes, small turnips and butternut squash. 

Add a couple of handfuls of organic lentils and split peas. A tin of tomatoes, a top up of the pan with water, a splash of soy sauce, salt and pepper. Simmered for an hour, and the seasoning to adjusted to taste along with a handful of chopped fresh chives. 

This makes up a hearty, chunky soup, enough for several bowls, and it’s perfect with doorstops of crusty, seeded bread. Or perhaps, cheese scones to dunk. Simple food, and a hug in a bowl. 

Gorgeous gazpacho

Partner and I had supper out in London one night last week, and we were served a gazpacho that was so overloaded with garlic that nothing else could be tasted at all. It got me to thinking that I could do much better at home.

A good gazpacho, in my book, should be zinging with freshness and flavour. Cucumber, tomatoes, and peppers, a touch of garlic and a slight chilli kick.  It’s appeal is in it’s velvety freshness and vinegary smack.  Best served chilled to within an inch of its life, spooned and scooped up with crusty wholemeal or sourdough bread.

Guess what we’re having for dinner tonight..😊