Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Caramelized Onion Lentil Soup

The cold and damp weather here practically demands comfort food, and what better than a bowl of Caramelized Onion Soup? Simple and wholesome with a bit of an unexpected kick from Aleppo Pepper, it's nutritious, tasty and a perfect work from home (or not) lunch.

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 March is such an in-between month. On one hand, we've had temperatures up to 18C and lots of sun some days, and then there's days like today when it's cold and rainy. Add in the inevitable "last month of class" stress, March Break (with the littles visiting daily), birthdays and appointments, and it seems like we never get a chance to sit down, much less relax. Comfort food has definitely been on the table more often than not, especially big bowls of soup like this one. While not exactly a 90 second microwaveable meal, the time spent to caramelize the onions so that they're sticky and sweet followed by the hour of lazy cooking is quite cathartic, and you're rewarded with many meals that you can pack for lunches or heat up if you (like me) work from home.

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Sourdough Irish Soda Bread #BreadBakers

This soda bread gets an added dose of tang from sourdough starter, texture from oats and a hint of spice. Raisins or none, it's up to you!

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I keep forgetting about how delicious and easy soda bread is - I'm usually embroiled in making slow rising sourdoughs, boules filled with a bunch of grains, seeds and fruit, or a batch of sandwich loaves when my creativity is running low. That said, for some reason in March I get a bit of an injection of Irish inspiration and I dig back into our bread books to see what I can do!

I always feel a touch of guilt tossing some of my sourdough starter every time I feed it, so I went on the lookout for recipes to use it this time around. The Gingered Whisk has a great simple recipe for soda bread that used sourdough discard, so I used that as a base and added flavour, fruit and fibre to it while making it vegan (dairy and eggs are getting expensive here). The result was a slightly sweet, deeply flavoured loaf studded with juicy raisins and just enough texture from the oats to be interesting. 

While tradition would be to tear into this while it is still warm and top with copious amounts of butter, my sources say this was still excellent the next morning for breakfast topped with some grape jam (we are still working through the 30 jars we canned last year!), and for tea with butter and honey.

I am hosting this month and asked the others to join me in sharing Irish Breads in honor of St. Patricks Day which is right around the corner.  Let's see what everyone baked up for us today......

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.