Chunky Pork and Vegetable Soup
Sometimes unplanned dinners with unusual ingredients left on your pantry makes you creative in the kitchen, take this for example. One week night we were supposed to dine out but all of a sudden laziness kicked in, at the same time it was quite cold outside so we decided to just have our dinner at home. There was one issue though, this dinner was unplanned hence we don’t have the right ingredients and we can only use what’s left over from other dishes we made earlier.
After looking at what I have on the fridge I was able to gather some cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, some shiitake, a couple of celery stalks and some pork belly. I also have some chopped tomatoes in can and some spices on the pantry with that I decided to make a soup. Soup would be perfect at that moment because it was quite cold and since we are in the lazy mode complicated recipes would not cut it, making soup requires minimal effort but gives a maximum comforting effect but it does not stop there, to add more to the comforting effect I decided to add some cayenne pepper to give it some good kick, perfect for the moment and the result was a perfect bowl of hot delicious pork and vegetable soup.
I know it’s winter here down under and while cayenne can give a good heat on dishes that does not mean you can’t use it in the Northern Hemisphere where its summer at the moment, in fact cayenne pepper is really popular this summer and it’s a great way to spice up dishes like barbecues, pasta and dips to name some.
- 800 g pork belly, cubed
- 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 1 large potato, cubed
- 2 carrots, cubed
- 6 pcs dried shiitake mushrooms, rehydrated and chopped
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 1 can chopped tomatoes
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp cayenne
- handful of chopped basil
- freshly ground black pepper
- In a pot add oil then brown pork belly pieces. Remove pork belly then set it aside.
- Add the onions and celery then sauté until it turns soft.
- Add pork back together carrots, shiitake mushrooms, chopped tomatoes, chicken stock, dried thyme, dried rosemary, smoked paprika, cayenne and chopped basil. Add water if needed, bring it to a boil then simmer for 40 minutes.
- Add the potatoes then continue to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the cauliflower and simmer for 10 more minutes.
- Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper then serve while hot.