VEGETABLE SOUP WITH PESTO • 2 tablespoons olive oil • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper • 1 heaped teaspoon sumac (optional) • 3-4 baby carrots, peeled and diced • 5-6 new potatoes, washed and quartered • 1, 14oz can of cannellini beans • 1 heaped tablespoon tomato paste • 32oz vegetable broth • 1 packet haricot vert or french beans • 2 zucchini (diced) • 2 tomatoes, quartered, deseeded and diced For the Pesto: • 2 cups fresh basil • 1/3 cup pine nuts • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper • Zest and juice of a lemon • 2 cloves garlic • 1/2 - 2/3 cup olive oil Method: Heat the olive oil in a heavy based pan, add the onions, sprinkle over a little sea salt and saute for 15-20 minutes until golden. Add the sumac if using, add the carrots, potatoes, tomato paste and cannellini beans, stir well to combine. Add the broth, bring to the boil then turn down to a simmer. Allow to simmer for approximately 10 until the vegetables are just soft. Add the haricot vert, diced tomato and zucchini, cook for another 3-5 minutes until just cooked through. Remove from heat, ladle into bowls and add a generous helping of pesto.
AVOCADO TOAST WITH TAMARI MUSHROOMS • 4 -6 pieces of good quality wholegrain bread, depending on the size of the pieces • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 1/2 medium red onion, peeled and diced • Sprinkling of kosher salt • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced • 8-10 ounce box mushrooms (any you desire) cleaned and sliced • 2 tablespoons tamari soy sauce • 2 avocados, peeled and mashed • Zest and juice of a lime • 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro (optional) finely chopped, a couple of sprigs reserved for garnish. • Pinch of salt and grinding of fresh black pepper Method: Heat the pan until warm, add the olive oil allow to heat up then add the red onion and saute for about 6-8 minutes, sprinkle a little salt over to prevent burning. Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms. Allow them to cook pretty much undisturbed until they have released their juices, once they are beginning to brown sprinkle over a little salt and pepper. Add the tamari and combine well, cook for 2 minutes or until cooked through. While the mushrooms are cooking toast the bread. Cut the avocados in half and spoon out the flesh into a bowl, add the lime zest and juice and cilantro if using, reserving a few sprigs of cilantro for garnish, mash gently with a fork making sure some lumps are remaining. When the toast is ready, very generously spread with the mashed avocado, then spoon the mushroom mixture over the top. Sprinkle with a few cilantro sprigs and a pinch of salt and pepper if desired and serve immediately.
Rivertown Magazine, April 2019