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Friday 12 July 2013

Recipe: Roast Vegetable Soup & Pickled Herring

I was having a root around one of the Polish grocers the other day, looking for something healthy to eat. Nearly all of them do a pretty good pickled herring in oil. Once the oil has been patted off it's a lovely piece of fish! Quite sharp and with a lovely smooth texture. I thought I'd balance it with something earthy and wholesome with a touch of sweetness: roast vegetable soup. The great thing about this recipe is it's just as good room temp as it is piping hot, which makes it a great summer lunch recipe.

ingredients (serves 4)

for the roast vegetable soup - 160C / 60m
10  carrots (peeled, quartered length ways)
2  parsnip (peeled)
4  tomatoes (quartered)
1  red pepper (de-seeded, cut into 8)
2  onions (diced)
4  cloves garlic (peeled whole)

1L  chicken stock (or vegetable)
Extra virgin olive oil (to coat)

for the accompaniment
8  pieces of pickle herring in oil

apparatus / equipment
Stick blender

roast vegetable soup
Prep the ingredients, and place in a baking tray. Give them a good glug of olive oil and season with salt and pepper, then toss them to the coat all over. 
Add 250ml stock and pop it into the pre-heated oven at 160C for 50-60mins until carrots and parsnips have take a nice golden colour. 
Once they're done, remove the garlic, and any veggies you want to put on the plate whole. 
In a saucepan large enough to hold all the ingredients, bring the rest of the stock to the boil, then turn off the heat.
Add the remaining veggies and blend with a stick blender until smooth.

to serve
Pat the herring dry with some kitchen towel and cut into quarters. 
Add some roast vegetables to the centre of the plate. (if you kept some)
Cover with the sauce and decorate with the pickled herring.
Serve immediately.

thinking ahead
The soup will freeze no problem at all. Once defrosted - if you're not going to reheat it - whiz with a stick blender to reconstitute it's texture then serve at room temp. Otherwise simply reheat in a saucepan!

This combo makes a great sauce with roast pork. Roast the veggies in with the pork, remove the pork from the roasting tin and drain off any excess fat, then whiz with a stick blender. Absolutely fabulous! Thanks to Raquel for this tip!! It's amazing!

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