Mushroom Soup, Fougasse, Char-grilled Broccoli Salad… & Holiday Gift Ideas!

“I live on good soup, not on fine words”
Moliere
It’s time for a savoury break… short & crisp recipe as most of my family has been bitten by the flu bug. We have a house full of sniffles & coughs, and this soup is the call of today. This is also my Mom’s fave soup which she now makes more often than me. I put together this simple recipe ages ago, yet had to call her for the recipe yesterday because amnesia struck me!!


It’s off for Meeta’s Monthly Mingle which is rightfully calling for warming soups this time. I think I am just about making it in the nick of time. The mingle this month is being hosted by SunshineMom @ TongueTicklers. I used some wonderful superfood milled nut flour in the soup, which I got from my FBC09 goodie bag. This Linswood milled nut flour is about the most versatile superfood I have come across. easy to use & a great larder necessity, I find myself reaching out for it all the time.

I used it here in this wonderful French Fougasse, a beautiful bread which has become a firm favourite in our house. I make this bread often, with different fillings to keep the monotony at bay.… This time it had a little lingering taste of the milled nut flour within, and the filling was of roasted red bell pepper, mature cheddar cheese and chopped walnuts. You can find a Red Bell Pepper, Walnut & Gouda French Fougasse recipe here, & a French Fougasse with Ricotta, Walnuts & Romesco here. I brushed the top of one loaf with sea salt, and used roasted sesame seeds for the other.

Our meal was yummier with the addition of this beautiful , deep flavoured char grilled broccoli salad from a book that my sweet friend Hilda of SaffronBerry recently gifted me in London, the Ottolenghi – The Cookbook. I have been eyeing that salad from day 1, and today was just the right day to make it. I will share the recipe at a later date… but here is a picture of how robust and delicious broccoli can get!

Quick Mushroom Soup
Ingredients:
200gms button mushrooms, sliced
2 spring onion, chopped with greens
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tbsp butter
250ml cold milk
1 tbsp cornflour
250ml chicken/vegetable stock; or milk (I used milk this time)
Dash of cream
1-2 tbsps milled nut seeds, optional
Salt and pepper to tateMethod:
Saute onions and garlic in butter til they become translucent. Add mushrooms and stir fry till they release thier liquid
Dissolve the cornflour in cold milk and add to above, stirring constantly till it begins to thicken.
Add chicken or vegetable stock and stir till comes to a simmering boil.
You can grate some cheese in if you like, or add a dash of cream/half and half if you like. Season with salt and pepper.
Cool and blend with immersion blewnder to keep slightly chunky consistency.
Before serving, heat through, add a tbsp or 2 of milled flour seeds. This adds a wonderful nutty texture and flavour.
Serve hot with a swirl of cream, sprig of fresh basil and wholewheat, oven baked croutons.

Oven baked croutons

Cube 2 slices of whole wheat bread, toss in 1 tbsp of olive oil / canola oil, 1 tbsp of milled nut seed flour, and a dash of salt. Make sure it is mixed well. Bake at 180C for 10 minutes till crisp and golden. Cool and store in an airtight box.
♥ Thank you for stopping by ♥


I’d like to offer some holiday gift suggestions too for a season which is full of the spirit of goodness, joy & sharing. It has been my ultimate pleasure to work with BloggerAid for the following cookbook which has now become a reality. It’s a wonderful book to gift for the holiday season, more so because 100% of the proceeds from sales will go to the UN World Food Programme. About the book…


Available from createspace at https://www.createspace.com/3405882.

Recipes from bloggers around the world making a difference By BloggerAid-CFF, Rhonda Renee, Mark Haak, Peter Georgakopoulos, Deeba Rajpal

Food does not simply nourish the body; food also celebrates what makes the world diverse, as well as, what unites us. The BloggerAid Cook Book is a collection of international recipes illustrating that we can work together and unite for a greater cause. The authors of this cookbook are food bloggers from around the world who have endeavored to make a difference by raising funds for the World Food Programme and encompassing their passion for “all things foodie” at the same time. Through these recipes they share their traditions and insatiable curiosity about new flavours. They pay tribute to the home cooking of our grandmothers, while celebrating the exoticism and richness of a world brought closer together by their hopes to make a difference. With recipes such as Tomato-Cheese Ravioli with Eggplant Sauce, Spicy Serundeng Tuna and Peanuts, Serrano Ham Paella with Oyster Mushrooms, Raspberry Mascarpone Bites and Triple Layer Orange-Passion Fruit Tart we are doing our part to say that bloggers can change the face of famine.

We chose the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) to receive the funds generated by the cookbook because of the wonderful work this organization does. The WFP has touched the lives of our members, many of whom are from countries where poverty is often a way of life. More specifically, 100% of BloggerAid’s proceeds from the cookbook will benefit the WFP’s School Meals Programme, which benefits an average of 22 million hungry children each year. School meals are important on many levels. In countries where school attendance is low, the promise of at least one nutritious meal each day boosts enrollment and promotes regular attendance.

This book is a virtual way for all of us, wherever we may be and however rich or poor we may be, to pull up a chair at the same table and share what we have.

Publication Date: Nov 10 2009
ISBN/EAN13: 1449561926 / 9781449561925
Page Count: 224
Binding Type: US Trade Paper
Trim Size: 8″ x 10″
Language: English
Color: Full Color
Related Categories: Cooking / General

I was thrilled to see the BloggerAid Cookbook being offered by Meeta @ What’s For Lunch Honey as part of her bidding package for Menu For Hope. Do stop by at WFLH to see what more the package includes… you will not be disappointed!


A few days ago I was pleasantly surprised to receive a beautiful package ,via Val’s blog More Than Burnt Toast which had an assortment of pretty glass bottles filled with spice blends. They are from an artisanal food company, ‘Made With Love, whose product range includes ‘Spice Blends and Delectable Edibles‘. Made with Love is a family run business with a back to basics focus on integrity, insight and simplicity. We create our Spice Blends & Delectable Edibles from whole dried foods blended and packaged with care and attention to detail.

It was a beautiful gift to receive. Do stop by and take a look at what they have to offer. Their vision and commitment reflects that they work hard to source earth-safe packaging and organic materials.


Another great gift idea for foodies would be this excellent cookbook software from The Cookbook People. I received my own copy of this fantastic software from BloggerAid for winning an in house competition, and am really enjoying building my own cookbook page by page. The cookbook people are “committed to helping families keep their cherished recipes, so they designed their own family cookbook software. Matilda’s Fantastic Cookbook Software prints your home-made family cookbooks. One copy…or as many copies as you want. Whenever YOU want. Because you make it yourself on your own computer!”

If you like, you could even add on a recipe binder or recipe box!


There is always place for yet another cookbook on our already stuffed bookshelves. One book I have immensely enjoyed reading, drooling over & planning to cook from is the ‘Ottolenghi – The Cookbook’ that Hilda gave me. It’s a book from the heart. It has history, it has stories, it has beautiful pictures & it has the ‘pick me up & cook‘ urgency in it! (I just cooked from it this afternoon; a char grilled broccoli salad … irresistible!)

In the author’s words “The Cookbook is our first attempt at “summing up” Ottolenghi food for the home cook. The 140 recipes cover everything we do: our prominent salads and roast vegetable dishes, cold meat and fish, substantial main courses from our dinner menu in Islington, some of our wholesome breads and savoury pastries, and a good mixture of the sweets that distinctively adorn Ottolenghi’s windows. We encourage you to use this open window into our world.


My last gift suggestion for today is a blend of foodie goodies like what we got in out goodie bags at the FBC09. Linswood has a wonderful array of super foods on offer. Throw into the bag some matured cheddar cheese, some quality organic olives, some Maldon sea salt, & you will be thanked forever!

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Comments

  1. Hope the family feels better soon. I'm sure they're on their way to recovery thanks to this yummy looking soup!

  2. Virginia bed and breakfast | Victorian inn bed and breakfast | Romantic bed and breakfasts says:

    Oh crispy recipe, one of my favorite flavors. I never thought about that, thats looks like such a good gift idea. I might give it a go myself. Can’t wait for Sunday, hopefully it will be cooler then!

    Regards,

  3. Alexa says:

    Hi Deeba,

    I had a huge smile on my face when I saw the Moliere quote. I spent my childhood learning all his plays in elementary school in France–that was the highlight of my youth.
    Your soup looks lovely. Thank you for inspiring us all to do what we can to improve our world. :-)

    Cheers,
    Alexa

  4. bethany (Dirty Kitchen Secrets) says:

    You had me at mushroom soup!! It is one of my favourite soups and your pictures are splendid as always. Nice ideas and suggestions for holiday gifts and the bloggeraid cookbook is definitely one I'm looking into. Bx

  5. Barbara Bakes says:

    You've even managed to make soup look elegant! Hope everyone is feeling better soon! Great gift ideas!

  6. Free Samples says:

    I hope everyone is feeling better!

  7. Rosa's Yummy Yums says:

    Great gift ideas!

    That Fougasse looks really good! Bread and cheese go so well together. Nice soup too!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  8. Sarah, Maison Cupcake says:

    Deeba, your family will be well nourished by these tasty treats. I love fougasse and have been planning to make one myself for Christmas, I'll let you know if I manage it. Broccoli is also one of my favourite superfoods, I've not used my flour from the goodie bag yet but enjoying all these suggestions what to do with it. xx

  9. Divya Vikram says:

    Soup sounds creamy and comforting.

  10. Divya Vikram says:

    Soup sounds creamy and comforting.

  11. Kitchen M says:

    I love creamy mushroon soup! I like how you added cream on top to make it pretty! Hope your family is feeling better. Happy Holidays! :)

  12. Gera @ SweetsFoods says:

    Not only sweets…sometimes savory dishes are necessary! The fougasse looks delectable as well as the mushroom soup too :)

    Excellent ideas for the gifts for these holidays.

    All the best,

    Gera

  13. Heavenly Housewife says:

    I have to admit, I am not a huge soup person, but this really looks good. I am tempted :)
    The Ottolenghi book you mentioned is an absolute favourite of mine, and I can often be found drooling in it too :D

  14. alice says:

    LOVE your blog and appreciate the great information. You mentioned your stuffed bookshelves–I had the same issue until I found some cookbook software
    that has not only helped my cookbook shelf dilemma, but made my life SO easy. You might want to look at it too. Merry Christmas and I look forward to following you as time goes on.

  15. Linda says:

    Nothing like a good soup. My mom makes mushroom soup as part of our traditional Christmas Eve dinner. It is a Polish tradition.
    I love all you cookbook ideas too. Isn't it amazing that with all the information on the Internet, there are still those of us who love to buy and read cookbooks!

  16. MeetaK says:

    oh dear deeba! what a lovely soup and a grand post. the soup looks great but i am really drooling over the fougasse. i need to make some soon!! thanks for the link love my sweet!

  17. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says:

    You never do things by halves do you Deeba! And that's why we adore you! :D

  18. Bellini Valli says:

    Where do I start Deeba..the soup, the fougasse, the cookbooks, the spices. I know you will love the spices!!!!

  19. Gloria says:

    I love this soup Deeba! really nice and I love croutons!and the spices, and the book, all!! gloria

  20. Natashya Kitchen Puppies says:

    What a perfect meal to sooth the body and the soul.
    And lovely gift suggestions. I am rather fond of Maldon salts!

  21. lisaiscooking says:

    I love this meal. Broccoli is my favorite, and I really adore mushroom soup, and your bread is gorgeous!

  22. Judy@nofearentertaining says:

    Love the soup!!! Thanks so much for all of the wonderful gift suggestions. Truly an awesome list!

  23. Deeba:

    Thank you for having stopped at my space, definitely feel privileged. Just wanted to let you know that the cake posted on my blog, can do away with the soaking. The fruits can be chopped up, and used in the cake immediately and yu'd still end with an absolutely fabulous cake. Thats how my mum has always been making it and still remains a hit with family and friends.

    htt://recipesfortheverydaywoman.blogspot.com

  24. Sunshinemom says:

    My family favourite too:). Thanks for the delicious bowlful!

  25. Happy cook says:

    Here it is freezing cole – 1°c and this soup and that Fougasse will be a warming welcome.

  26. Not sure which one is my favorite, but the fougasse grab my attention immediately. And, of course the soup look scrumptious!

  27. Peggy Bourjaily says:

    Love it when you go savory! And I love mushroom soup. Will have to try this out some time.

  28. Chow and Chatter says:

    hope you are all feeling better soon love this soup, your mum i bet is an awesome cook, my mum in law also loves soups she lives in Chennai

  29. Neel | Learn Food Photography says:

    What a great soup. I have to say that I saw your photograph and I was like wow!! And then I saw your second photograph of the soup (the one on dark background) I think you should enlarge those photos in this post. That is such a great photo, at that small size, it doesn't do justice to the beauty in that photograph.

    Wonderfully captured. Kudos to you.
    Neel from Learn Food Photography

  30. I miss the heartiness of mushroom soup. should try this soon!

  31. Ashley says:

    Beautiful. So sorry that you are sick but this soup looks like it could cure just about anything that ails you.

  32. Helene says:

    This is such a beautiful mushroom soup Deeba. And the gifts, all great ideas. :)

  33. Maria says:

    I am loving that soup!

  34. Muneeba says:

    Love a comforting, creamy mushroom soup .. and yours is a version I could actually make, so yayyyy!! Yours pics drive me wild, as always :)

  35. Su-yin @ Bread et Butter says:

    I love mushroom soup, but have never made it from scratch. I'll have to try this now, it looks really good (and perfect for this cold weather we're having now!).

    And I simply love Ottolenghi, and I hear the foccacia recipe is fabulous.

  36. lisa @ dandysugar says:

    I love this mushroom soup–I've been making lots of soups lately. It's been dinner more often than not. I'm going to bookmark this one. Hope the family feels better soon!

  37. Jeanne says:

    That fougasse looks incredible! And isn't the Ottolenghi cookbook fantastic? I own it but it's been packed in a box somewhere since we moved in the summer :( One day… Also, I didn't realise there were different Linswood products in the goodie bags – I got a bag of truly delicious shelled hemp. Who knew goodness could be so tasty!

  38. Komal-Nishka says:

    Dee, just a quick note to say I tried this soup today and we loooveedd it, a la restaurant style.. thanks..xxx

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