Finely slice two onions and press two cloves of garlic.
Heat a tablespoon of Kentish Cobnut Oil in a pan and add the onion and garlic, with half a teaspoon of sugar. Fry these together for 8-10 minutes, until the onions are beginning to brown and caramelize. If the mixture is too dry, add a little more oil.
Add black pepper and salt to taste.
Incorporate the beef stock (using 2-3 beef stock cubes, depending on how beefy you like the flavour to be) or for a vegetarian alternative use two teaspoons of Marmite. You can, if you wish, add half a glass of red wine to give the soup a richer flavour. Keep stirring and add a dash of brandy or sherry to taste. Stir in the thyme.
The flavour of the soup will develop over the following 48 hours and it will improve on keeping. Serve hot, with cobnut croutons and grated cheese, if you wish.
Directions:Take a piece of white sliced bread and chop into small squares. Heat 2 tablespoons of Cobnut Oil in a pan and fry the squares of bread until browned and crisp. Add salt & pepper to taste. Dry croutons on kitchen roll, and when fully dry, store in an airtight container. They will keep for 2-3 days and will remain crisp, so long as you have thoroughly dried them before storage.
A hand blender or liquidizer will be necessary for a smooth result.
Serve with fingers of cheese on toast
What could be more evocative of Autumn, than Roasted Pumpkin Soup?
Prepare the pumpkin – remove the seeds and scoop out the flesh. Heat 2 tablespoons of Cobnut Oil on a shallow oven tray (180 degrees) and add the pumpkin flesh. Mix well to give a coating of oil to all pieces of pumpkin. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Roast in the oven for 40 minutes, or until softened and beginning to brown.
Pour any remaining oil from the pan into a frying pan and fry the onion and red pepper. Add a little more Cobnut Oil if you have insufficient. Stir fry the chopped pepper and onion with black pepper, salt and a dash of tomato puree.
Combine the roasted pumpkin, and the onion/pepper mixture, into a large soup pan. Add 1.5 pints of chicken stock (or vegetable boullion if preferred). Heat on the hob and simmer for 15 minutes, adding grated nutmeg (half a teaspoon) and black pepper to taste, plus half a glass of white wine.
Blend thoroughly so you have a velvety smooth soup. Stir in the single cream and serve with fingers of cheese on toast.
Cook the bruschetta in advance to save time - store in an airtight tin:Bruschetta:
Toppings: Smoked salmon & fromage frais
Pesto with crumbled feta cheese
Hummous and a black olive
Tomato and onion (fried in cobnut oil) with capers and black pepper
Creme fraiche and a prawn, drizzled with Cobnut oil, black pepper and lemon juice
Heat the oven to 180 degrees.
Slice a baguette into 1cm thick slices. Brush each side generously with Cobnut Oil.
Place on a tray in a hot oven for 6-8 minutes until crisp and brown. Do not allow to become too brittle
Store in an airtight container and add toppings just before serving.
See ideas for toppings, above.