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Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Growing in Staffordshire!

We have our first Grow Your Own day this weekend and it is exciting to think about the forthcoming growing season! Almost more exciting is planning what to eat! The relationship between growing and eating is so intertwined and food plays such an important role in our eco day courses because it is about sharing, joining in and relaxing. We think a lot about how we plan a menu. What is the season, what's in the garden to pick, what is the weather like and how hard will our guests have worked. We try to imagine how a guest might feel and what would be delicious and interesting for them to eat and enjoy.

This weekend we are going for soups, breads and local cheeses followed by home made cakes. It will be warming, delicious and comforting food if things have got a bit chilly in the shed!

Lentil and Bacon Soup

200g Bacon lardons/strips

1 onion

1 carrot

1 stick celery

some herbs of choice

tomato paste

tin of tomatoes

good organic stock of choice up to 1 litre (depending on how thick you like it)

good handful of red lentils

salt and pepper

Fry off the onion, carrot, celery and bacon in slug of olive oil. I add some dried oregano and a pinch of paprika at this stage. Then add the tomato paste and stir ( I sometime add a spoon of pesto too if i want it to feel sunnier) and then add the tomatoes and stock. Allow to come to a simmer and add the lentils and stir well. Simmer for a further 30 mintes with lid on. Once the lentils have softened and cooked I take is off the heat and whizz up til smooth and thick. This is a heary and warming soup for cold days and enjoy!

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