28 September 2010

Storecupboard soup with preserved lemon

It is incredibly satisfying using up little odds and ends of food and turning them into something enjoyable. With a few greens in the fridge needing to be used up and a smattering or substances from the store cupboard I made a quick and tasty soup.

    • big handful of greens
    • handful of lentils/pasta/barley/chickpeas
    • a piece of bread
    • onion
    • garlic, dried chilli flakes, cumin, olive oil, tomato puree
    • preserved lemon

Firstly I fried some onion and spring onion in a big glug of olive oil. I then added concentrated tomato puree, garlic, cumin, dried Turkish chilli flakes and a crumbled slice of bread. This needs to fry for five minutes.


Then boiling water was added, a handful or something starchy (I added a mixture of green lentils, orange lentils and the delicious rice-shaped Orzo pasta) and a stock cube (no shame at all in a stock cube for a week day meal in my experience - I used chicken) and the mixture allowed to cook for ten minutes. Greens then need to go in (I had kale and cabbage but use anything) and ten more minutes simmering allowed for the all the ingredients to get to know each other and relax. I added a few scraps of leftover lamb here. Add some preserved lemon after rinsing. Correct the seasoning and serve. I think black pepper is important here, ideally in large pieces approximately a third the size of the peppercorn itself.

Lovely. The kale is refreshed by immersion to a mineral green. The soup base is sour, salt and spice. The bread, lentils and pasta mix at the bottom of the bowl and catch the chunks of pepper. The olive oil and traces of lamb fat float on the top of the soup deliciously and the occasional pieces of lamb are welcome indeed. I enjoyed this more than yesterday's roast really. It must be the parsimony of the north in me...


  1. Wicked blog mate! Got some really interesting recipes on it.

  2. Thanks Ben. Glad you are enjoying the blog, keep reading and hopefully some more recipies will appeal to you!

  3. Sounds really nice. First time I've come across using bread in soup and like the preserved lemon addition too.

  4. Thanks for the comments, hope you are enjoying the blog.

    Using up stale bread by putting it in soup is a good trick, true peasant style cookery! It can thicken a soup really nicely and of course you don't notice it being stale when it's in the liquid.