So I have been struck down with freshers flu! Nooo, seriously every year I get it, I don’t think it is fair. I mean I’m not even a fresher I’m a third year, but sadly I’m not immune- there is something about coming back to university that breeds germs. All those people from different places, coming together getting packed in small bars and lecture theaters, it’s bound to happen. And I’m guessing the cold weather up here doesn’t help either.

I Can’t really remember freshers flu last year, so it must have been pretty mild, which is something, saying last year was the swine flu scare. I guess working in summer camps means you’re pretty much immune to anything by the end of it. But first year when I was actually a fresher, that was spectacular, I fell asleep constantly! I remember sitting down in a lecture and suddenly realising there was no way I was going to concentrate, sadly the lecturer arrived before I had a chance to leave. The rest of that weekend was spent sleeping and drinking JD from a hipflask. Not the best idea but awesome all the same.

So food, that is what this blog is supposed to be about isn’t it. Well this week I haven’t eaten that many interesting meals hence the lack of posts, sorry guys. Today I decided to fight the cold with fire and spice, in soup form of course because my throat is sore. I’ve been told spicy food is good for a cold and I have to agree, it definitely perks you up.

Spicy Parsnip Soup

  • Parsnips (2 makes a big bowl of soup for one –  scale up from that)
  • an onion chopped
  • Ginger (I used ginger paste but fresh works equally well)
  • chilli flakes or crushed chilli or garam masala
  • cinnamon
  • seasoning
  • stock approx  1 pint
  • a little oil
  1. Chop the onion into thin slices and fry until it starts to soften, then add the ginger and the chilli. Be generous – you want the flavour to be intense to cut through the cold. As I was using crushed ginger paste and crushed chilli paste which are both quite potent I used a teaspoon of each.
  2. Finely chop the parsnips and add to the onions, fry for a short while then add the stock. Bring this to boil then leave simmering for about 20 mins, until everything is nice and soft.
  3. This is one of those soups I like to blend, so once the veg has softened I allow it to cool a little then blend with a hand blender.
  4. Add a generous amount of cinnamon approx 2 tsp, and stir in, season to taste and consume.

The amazing Cup-Bowl full of scrummy soup

A little side note on parsnips: Parsnips are in season at the moment, so are cheap to buy, which is always a plus. They’re also so versatile, I tend to buy a bag of them at the beginning of the week, and will have used them all by the end of it. They’re great for sneaking veg into a meal try;

  • Parsnip curry
  • parsnip mash ( mix a few in with your regular mash, to give it some extra flavour, apparently great on shepherds pie)
  • Parsnip chips (great with garlic mayo)
  • Honey roasted parsnips (par boil them then liberally baste with a mix of 1 part oil to 2 parts honey, then slow roast. Great with your sunday lunch.)
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