Caveman Artisan Bread and the Best Healthy Soup Ever

Sometimes the best food is the simplest to make…

I’m a recent convert to Pinterest (you can follow me here).  I found this amazing and soooo easy peasy artisan bread recipe.  I like to call it Caveman Artisan Bread because it’s so easy, even a caveman could do it!

The blog author also lists several variations of the bread which I’m dying to try: lemon, rosemary and gruyere cheese; cranberry, orange and almond; various cheeses, etc., etc.  I want to try experimenting with different whole wheat and multi-grain flours, and also fennel with dried plums (ok ok, technically prunes, but dried plums sounds so much sexier!).

One of my favourite soup recipes comes from Laura Calder’s French Taste.  I have made it several times now and it’s still a great stand-by.  When I was pregnant, the thought of eating cold veggies in a salad made me nauseated, so I started making tons of vegetable soups in order to get my daily nutritional requirements.  

Tizza Soup – from French Taste: Elegant Everyday Eating
Makes: about 3 quarts (3L)
1 pound (450g) potatoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 pound (225g) zucchini, chopped
1/2 pound (225g) carrots, peeled
1 turnip (not rutabaga)
2 leeks, trimmed, washed and sliced
2 artichoke hearts (not marinated), quartered
2 small tomatoes, chopped
1/2 celery stalk, chopped
1 cube chicken or vegetable stock (bouillon powder)
1 tbsp (15mL) olive oil
Salt and pepper

Put all the vegetables into a large pot.  Add the stock cube, olive oil, and salt and pepper.  [I typically add 1 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of pepper].  Add enough water to just cover the veggies.  Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until all the vegetables are tender, about 30 min, depending on the size of the vegetables.  Put the mixture through a food mill of blend with an immersion blender [immersion blenders for the win!].  Reheat before serving.  [I usually add a tsp of Herbes de Provence or some other earthy dried herbs just for a bit of extra flavour].

And that’s it!  I recently read Bringing Up Bebe, and while I’m not 100% convinced by everything in the somewhat controversial book, I do agree with the “French” way of eating.  Encouraging kids to try a bit of everything, right from an early age, along with eating meals in courses, seems to be a good way of dining.  This soup would be so handy to have in the fridge to quickly heat up as a first course.  Plus it tastes good and doesn’t look too weird (kids seem to be very visual eaters).  And it’s a nice way to get more healthy foods into your family!

Dinner at Le Trumilou in Paris – highly recommend!

I own dozens of cookbooks and French Taste is one of my favourites.  I originally bought it for the pastry recipes, but have used it for tons of salads and side dishes as well.  One of my favourite things about the meals we had while travelling in France a number of years ago, was all of the delicious vegetables and seasonal produce that were highlighted in the meals – rather than just the obligatory lettuce and tomato “salad” thrown in as a side in typical North American restaurants.  Yummers!

Happy Wednesday (and bon appetit!)


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