Incredible home chef, author and mom of three, Jan Kohler, shares her two yummy soup recipes with us from her cookbook “Pink Gin and Fairy Cakes.” Plus we demanded she also includes her pumpkin fritter recipe because no soup is complete without em!
French Onion Soup
2 tablespoons of butter
3 large onions, finely sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 tablespoons of flour
2 litres of chicken stock
1 cup of white wine
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs of thyme
1 French baguette
salt and pepper for seasoning
a three-quarter cup of Gruyère or any strong-flavoured hard cheese
First, cut your onions in half and then take each half and slice the onion very, very finely. You want the onions in this soup to be delicate.
In a heavy-based (preferably cast-iron) pot, melt the butter and fry the onion and garlic on a low heat until the onion caramelises and turns golden brown in colour.
Add the flour, making sure that all the onions are well coated. This will thicken your soup.
Gradually add the chicken stock and white wine, stirring continuously. Bring this to the boil and add the herbs and seasoning.
Cover the pot and allow to gently simmer for about an hour.
When the soup is ready you can turn it off and reheat it for later use if necessary.
About 20 minutes before you’d like to serve the soup, preheat your grill and prepare the baguette. Slice the baguette diagonally to get nice long pieces, and then sprinkle the grated cheese on top of each one.
Grill for 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and turns golden brown.
Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs from the soup before serving.
#CheffTip This soup can be served in individual bowls with the slice of bread floating on top or if you’d like a smaller cocktail version, serve it in a teacup with the bread balanced over the top.
Spicy Butternut Soup with Coconut Milk
#CheffTip When I do make it for the children, I tone down the curry paste. This soup freezes really well and can be conveniently re-heated when needed.
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon of Thai green curry paste
1 kilogram of butternut, diced
1 litre of chicken, or vegetable, stock
coconut cream (400ml tin)
olive oil, for frying
Fresh Coriander leaves to garnish
In a large, deep pot, fry the onion and curry paste in a bit of olive oil.
Once the onion is soft and translucent, add the butternut.
Add the chicken stock, ensuring that the vegetables are immersed in liquid.
Put the lid on and allow to simmer until the vegetables are very tender.
Keep checking the liquid levels and don’t let the soup evaporate.
Add more stock if needed and set this aside to cool.
Pour the entire mixture into a food processor and pulse until the soup is smooth and free of lumps. (You might have to do this in two parts).
Return the soup to the pot and stir the coconut cream through, warming it over medium heat as you go. The result should be a thick, velvety soup that you can serve with delicious bread or perhaps topped with a few croutons.
2 cups pumpkin, cooked and mashed
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
half a teaspoon salt
2 eggs, beaten
Vegetable oil for deep-frying
Lightly beat the eggs in a mixing bowl and mix in the remaining ingredients by hand. The consistency of the batter will be stiffer than that of the sweetcorn fritters recipe.
Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy-based pot for deep frying. The oil in your pot should be at least 4cm deep. Only once the oil is hot –if you have a thermometer, your temperature should be between 190°C and 225°C –spoon fritter-sized portions into the pot, keeping them separated to prevent them sticking together.
Flip them over so both sides turn golden brown.
Set them on some paper towels to absorb excess oil and serve as soon as possible, sprinkled with a bit of cinnamon sugar.