Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Stock and soup in Cyprus

Hint of the day:

If you're making stock out of chicken bones, and you're in a bit of a hurry, do take time to make sure that the shaker section of your ground pepper container is in place before you give a couple of shakes into the pan. Or use a pepper grinder.


On Wednesdays Richard usually brings a colleague home for lunch. Today there was an additional person coming, to work with both Richard and Tim on the DVD of 'Esther' which they recorded in the Summer.

The house was beginning to feel a bit chilly, after yesterday's rain. So I decided to make curried carrot and ginger soup.

I could have used stock from the freezer, but since we had a partly-eaten chicken in the fridge, I stripped that, froze the meat, fought off the cats (after giving them a few pieces of skin) and threw the bones into a pan with lots of water, some chopped onions, some leftover veggies, some vinegar, and some herbs.

Then I seasoned it.

A shake of salt - no problem. I decided to use ground black pepper. So I took off the lid - it's one of those herb/spice containers - NOT NOTICING that the second lid, the one with the shaker holes in it, had removed itself from the jar, and embedded itself in the main lid.

Fortunately, there wasn't much pepper in the container. But it was still a great deal more than I planned to put in the stock.

Thankfully, the leftover veggies took the brunt of it. So I removed them, and rinsed them to remove the visible pepper grounds, and hoped it would be all right. I simmered the stock for a couple of hours, then tasted it. Uh-oh. It was distinctly peppery, with quite a back-bite.

So I used 750ml stock from the freezer, and 850ml new peppery stock, hoping that would dilute it. I also hoped that the curry powder and ginger in the soup would disguise the taste a little.

An hour later, we sat down to eat. I stirred some Greek yogurt into my soup, and ate it with some freshly-baked bread, and thought it was all right, if a bit spicy.

One of our guests took a sip, then asked for the salt... and the pepper!

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