Quick secret ingredient tomato soup

Sunday, 20 October 2013
Well... it's been another busy week and I've been very glad to have pre-scheduled a lot of posts back when it wasn't so hectic.

This week saw a half lb increase on the scales. Given my four day birthday feast and a little of indulgence on a hen do, I'm rather relieved. Key seems to be returning to it as soon as possible. My new target date for that last two and a half pounds is the end of November, as I have a few events coming up, that seems doable.  I have to be honest though, I'm beginning to feel quite content with where I've got to.

This weekend we've been busy, as ever.  We went to The Vyne with a friend and her gorgeous five month old.  Friday was incredibly packed - haircut, post office to send the next Foodie Penpals box, Tumble Tots and travelling to Bristol.  We managed to find D a new winter coat, it's blue and stripy!  I've really discovered H&M recently - their kids clothes are amazing!  D is so weenie that at three and a half he's still in 18-24 month trousers but as he isn't in nappies, he doesn't have the right waist size.  Adjustable waists from there are making life a lot lot easier... and the clothes are cool!

Yesterday we went to Westonbirt Arboretum which was amazing.  We went earlier in the year, just D and I when we were Gromit hunting and I was extremely keen to get Mr K and Granny along to see just how beautiful it is.  D loves it there.  He was foraging for all kinds of pine cones and fallen leaves and just adores hiding in trees.

This is the 'I'm not sure about this' face.  We apparently managed five miles.  No mean feat!  We just about missed the torrential downpour too.

Last night we went back to Meluha for their tasting menu.  I'm going to talk about this at a later date and write it all up.  Suffice it to say, for now, that it was amazing.  Service is brilliant, food outstanding and the wine really a good compliment.  Completely made up for missing out on London Street Brasserie for my birthday and exceeded my expectations.  For now, however, my lips are sealed.

I should also take this opportunity to point out that I'm looking for any information on Paris highlights here.  I've had some really useful advice on Twitter but the more the better!

You may have noticed last weekend that my pumpkin, sage and apple soup only had five servings.  For me, that's a bit of a problem.  All three of us eat the soup on Sunday and then I take it to work Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  Seen as D will actually eat a full serving of soup, I had nothing left for Wednesday.  So I knocked this together in superquick time - taking about as long as it takes for me to make dinner on a Tuesday night (the quicker the better with planning and marking to do).  This rather awful photo symbolises the lack of time - so many things I should have done differently!

Stats: - 1 serving, either zero propoints or two propoints. 

one shallot, finely sliced
one tin of chopped tomatoes
a tablespoon of sundried tomato paste (2pp if added, zero if not)
one teaspoon of marmite (the secret ingredient that amplifies the flavour)
a squidge of tomato purée
one stock cube made up to about 200ml
a teaspoon of Italian herbs (or whichever herb you fancy, or a handful of fresh basil)

Mist your pan with frylight or similar.  Add the shallot and gently fry for about six minutes - until the shallot goes translucent but not brown.  Add the tomato, marmite, tomato paste and purée, vegetable stock and leave to simmer for ten minutes.  Add the herbs, stir through.  Blend until smooth.  

Easy, quick and incredibly tasty.  What secret ingredients do you have in your arsenal?

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