As it has been a great year for an abundance of vegetables it seemed a good idea to put together a few easy recipes that could be used for Halloween on 31st October and Bonfire night which is celebrated here in England on the 5th of November. Bonfire night is celebrated to remember when Guy Fawkes tried to blow up Parliament in 1605. Here is a link to the history that you might be interested in as well as making some of the recipes . http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/people/guy_fawkes
This soup will serve 8 people easily and can be made a couple of days before and reheated when needed. Cinnamon is a great addition to this soup .
- 2 red onions sliced.
- 2 sprigs of Rosemary leaves picked or a sprinkling of cinnamon
- a few chilli flakes or chopped fresh red chilli
- salt and pepper
- 2kg of pumpkin or squash ,halved deseeded and cut into chunks
- 2 litres of hot chicken or vegetable stock.
- chives or parsley to finish.
Heat oven to a medium heat and spread pumpkin and onions on a baking tray .Sprinkle over the rosemary ,chilli flakes ,salt and pepper and or cinnamon (not to much cinnamon as it can be quite strong .) mix up well on tray with a little olive oil and bake until soft .
When pumpkin and onions are soft put all this into a food processor or blender with the stock and whizz. Serve in mugs or bowls and sprinkle with chopped parsley to finish if liked .
Leek and cheese toastie .
This recipe is from River cottage veg every day by Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall and if like me you don’t eat meat then this book is invaluable .
It also goes great with the pumpkin soup.
- 2 medium leeks trimmed (white and pale green part only)washed and sliced.
- A couple of sprigs of thyme , leaves only .
- 3 tablespoon double cream
- 50 g strong Cheddar, grated.
- 2 think slices of thick farmhouse bread .
- Sea salt and ground black pepper.
Melt the butter in a small frying pan over a medium heat and add the leeks .As soon as they are sizzling ,turn the heat down quite low and sweat gently stirring often for about 10 minutes until tender. Stir in the thyme and cream and cook for a minute or so until the cream is bubbling . Take off the heat and stir in 2 thirds of the cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat the grill.Toast the bread lightly .Spread the leek mixture thickly over the bread and top with the remaining cheese.Grill until bubbling and golden and serve straight away .This serves two people .
You can add grated cheese to these or crack an egg into the middle while baking .
4 large open topped mushrooms.
- A knob of butter
- 1 garlic clove finely chopped
- 30 g grated strong cheddar (optional)
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
Preheat the oven to 190c Gas mark 5.Put the mushrooms open side up into a small lightly oiled roasting dish. Dot with the butter ,scatter on the garlic if liked ,then dust with salt and pepper . Bake for about 15 minutes until the mushrooms are tender and juicy.
Serve the baked mushrooms as they are or sprinkle over the grated cheese and return to the oven for 5 minutes until golden and bubbling .If using an egg add this when mushrooms are first put in oven. Serves 2.
Pumpkin and chickpea pockets.
You can use this filling on toast instead of in pitta bread. This recipe serves 4.
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 heaped teaspoon of cumin
- 500g pumpkin or squash cut into chucks about 2-3mm
- grated zest of orange and a good squeeze of orange juice
- I teaspoon hot paprika
- 400g tin chick peas
- 4 pitta breads or slices of thick toast.
- 4 heaped tablespoon of yoghurt or sour cream
- salt and pepper.
Heat the butter and the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin and let it fry for a couple of minutes. Add the pumpkin and fry for about 8-10 minutes ,stirring often until tender and starting to brown ,but still with some bite.
Add the orange zest ,paprika and chickpeas and cook until the chickpeas are hot . Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper and then add a squeeze of orange juice.Taste and add more salt , pepper and orange juice if needed.
Spoon some of the chickpea pocket of a warmed pitta bread or pile on to toast .Top with a spoonful of yoghurt or sour cream.