EVERY WEEK I take £5 to Ridley Road Market in Dalston, Hackney, London E8 2LH, to spend on seasonal food, obviously not including items likely to be already in a kitchen, such as sauces, oil, herbs and spices. On Friday I tell you what I have chosen and publish a seasonal recipe.
As usual, expenditure on any extra ingredients, eg, flour, will be recouped by usage over subsequent weeks. Some of the recipes will be frugal. They will all be tasty. All will be vegetarian.
This week’s £5 basket
Bowl peppers (5) £1
Bowl tomatoes (1.25kg) £1
Bowl potatoes (2kg) £1
Bunch leeks (6) £1
Head celery £1
Recipe: Tomato soup with soda bread
Serves 2; soda bread serves 2-6
Equipment: tomato soup: serrated kitchen knife, medium-lidded saucepan, handheld or electric blender or sieve, tin-opener. Soda bread: scales, mixing bowl, teaspoon and baking sheet. (Wash all vegetables)
Preparation: soup 10 minutes, cook 35 minutes. Preparation: soda bread 8 minutes, cook 30 minutes. Oven 230C
Ingredients — soup:1 leek, peeled and sliced across the grain, 1 small potato peeled and cut into small cubes, 1 stick celery sliced, 500g tomatoes chopped into small pieces, tin tomatoes, 250ml water or stock. I am using some saved cooked vegetable water with a teaspoon of vegetable bouillon, herb of choice. I’m using oregano because it’s growing in the garden but basil or thyme would be good too. Tablespoon of oil and seasoning to taste. (Optional extra: a carrot cut into cubes and added with the potato for some extra sweetness.) Adding a tin of tomatoes to this soup gives bulk. Soda bread ingredients: 500g plain white flour, teaspoon bicarbonate soda, 350ml-400ml buttermilk or sour milk.
Method — soup: On medium heat, warm the oil in the saucepan and add the leek. Stir and cook for 3 minutes, then add the chopped celery and potato. Continue stirring until all the vegetables are covered in the oil. Reduce the heat and place the lid on the saucepan so the vegetables will sweat for 5 minutes. Remove lid and add fresh and tinned tomatoes and the herbs with the stock. Cover and leave to cook gently for 20 minutes until all the vegetables are soft. Leave the soup to cool for 5 minutes before blending.
Meanwhile, make the soda bread. Set oven to 230C. Put all the dry ingredients in a bowl and make a well in the middle. Pour in 2/3 of the liquid and mix gently. Do not over-work or the bread becomes heavy. Bring the mixture together, adding more liquid until you have a soft dough. Tip on to a lightly floured work surface and bring together, shaping the dough into a round. Make a cross on top, using the long handle of a wooden spoon, and place on a lightly floured baking sheet. Cook for 15 minutes. Turn the heat down to 200C and cook for another 15 minutes. Leave to cool for 5 minutes but serve it warm with the soup. Blend the soup and return to the heat for 5 minutes to warm through, but do not let it boil.
With the remaining food from my basket I shall make a celery-and-potato soup, and celery stems filled with cream cheese and cut into 2.5 cm lengths, as well as several salads with the celery, tomatoes and peppers, a cold potato-and-leek salad with toasted cumin seeds and a vinaigrette dressing, and a leek-and-potato soup.
Tip: If you do not have a blender but use a sieve, skin the tomatoes before cooking. Place the tomatoes in a large bowl and pour over boiling water to cover —leave for 10minutes. Split skin with a knife and peel. The skin should come away easily. Sieving is to remove the seeds. If you’re not fussed about seeds, don’t bother.
* Emboldened, coloured words may indicate a hyperlink. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.
Previous articles hyperlinked:
Broccoli mornay 5 April 2013;
Easter redemption song 29 March 2013
Less is enough 22 March 2013;
A tart in the mart 15 March 2013;
Polenta verde and sauté mushrooms 8 March 2013;
Caribeasy 29 February 2013;
Feeling fruity 22February 2013;
Kashmir delight 15 February 2013;
Samphire surprise 8 February 2013;
Two dishes from £5 1 February 2013;
Ae fond neep 25 January 2013;
Cauliflower cheese 18 January 2013;
A Hackney frittata 11 January 2013; Tasty and easy Christmas snack 21 December 2012; The shops behind the market stalls 9 November 2012; Chutney 2 November 2012; Piccalilli 26 October 2012; Golden soup 19 October 2012; Roasted, stuffed squash 12 October 2012; Vegetable curry 5 October 2012;Carrot and coriander soup 28 September 2012; Ratatouille Gypsy stew 21 September 2012; Bubble and squeak Shooey style, Bakewell pudding 14 September 2012; Coleslaw and radishes 7 September 2012; Turkish spinach pie 31 August 2012; Tomato tart, marinated aubergines, fresh mango chutney 24 August 2012; Roasted butternut squash soup and beetroot salad 17 August 17 2012; The column sets itself a challenge 15 August 2012