Lentil Soup, frugal cooking at its best

lentil soup

This Lentil Soup recipe can be adjusted to make either a nice broth with bread or a filling chunky variety. This soup is simple to make, nutritious and cheap, cheap, cheap! Quantities below makes a pan to feed four people.

Lentil Soup Ingredients

  • red lentils – half a cup to one cup depending how thick you want it
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • water to cover well
  • stock of choice (we like a spoon of Vecon Stock with extra vits for winter!)
  • salt if needed, depending on stock used

Method

Place lentils and water in pan and bring to the boil while preparing the other vegetables. Add them and stock, cook until tender. Mash or partially blend if you wish. Ta-da!

Top with lots of parsley! Grow it all year round, even in a pot on a windowsill…

Variants

  • Add other veg such as diced potatoes and celery or chopped greens near the end of cooking.
  • Add a tin of tomatoes and/or tomato puree with a handful of pasta to cook along with the lentils for a much thicker hearty soup.

If you liked this lentil soup recipe, try our other frugal fare!


the mermaid and the bear

“The first time the sea killed me, my brother brought me back to life.”

So begins THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR. Set in a castle, this historical novel features the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic and a love story.

Creamy Carrot and Wild Garlic Soup

carrot and wild garlic soup
Topped with pasta and parsley

This carrot and wild garlic soup is creamy and delicious. Wild garlic grows on the edges of woodlands from March onward and can be used for wonderful garlic flavour in many dishes.

Also see wild garlic pesto

Ingredients to serve four people

  • six large carrots, scraped and chopped
  • four sticks of celery, chopped
  • a good bunch of wild garlic leaves
  • a handful or two of cashew nuts depending how creamy you want it
  • salt to taste

Method

Place carrots and celery in a pan and cover with water. Bring to boil and turn down to simmer for a few minutes. Add the wild garlic and cook for a few minutes more, until everything is tender. Pour into blender jug with nuts and salt. Blend and enjoy.

Tips: If your blender is not very strong, try soaking the cashews in water overnight to soften them. You can use 3 or 4 cloves of normal garlic in place of the wild garlic. Add a bunch of coriander for a popular classic!


food for free -  a classic book on foraging

Food for Free by Richard Mabey is a great guide to Britain’s wild foods. A favourite reference tool of ours, detailing wild herbs, berries, greens, sea vegetables and fungi. 

Buy from Amazon


If you liked this carrot and wild garlic soup, see our other wild food recipes: dandelion pancakes and nettle soup

leek and potato soup, frugal food

leek and potato soup

Leek and potato soup is a basic dish, yet the flavour combination is beautiful. These quantities make a large pan of soup – they can easily be reduced by half if desired.

Pictured above is a simplified version using no oil, garlic, flour or peas. It’s just potatoes, leeks, water and salt, cooked then mashed. It’s on the pink bench, one of our upcycled pallet projects.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil
  • 2 medium leeks, sliced width-ways into thin round slices
  • a couple of cloves of garlic (optional)
  • 6-8 large potatoes, cut into chunks (about 2 or 3 cm.)
  • 2 tablespoons of white flour
  • 1 cup of frozen peas (an optional extra)
  • 5 or 6 cups of water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Cook the leeks and garlic, if using, in the sunflower oil for a few minutes then stir in the flour. Add one cup of water and stir well to blend. Add the potatoes and the rest of the water (you may need to adjust the quantity slightly – make sure all the vegetables are well covered). Bring to the boil, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, and then turn down to simmer until the potatoes are just about cooked. Finally, if using, add the peas and cook for a further few minutes until tender. Season to taste.

If you liked this leek and potato soup, try our other frugal recipes here.

the mermaid and the bear

“The first time the sea killed me, my brother brought me back to life.”

So begins THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR. Set in a castle, this historical novel features the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic and a love story.

tomato rice soup, great frugal cooking

tomato rice soup

This tomato rice soup is a tasty way to use up leftover rice. It’s particularly cheap if you have your own herbs on hand in the garden or a pot. We used rosemary which is very easy to grow – most cuttings grow just from being stuck in the ground without any additives, so ask your green fingered friends or snip some bits in parks/public gardens 🙂 Of course you could just buy some. It’s a very hardy perrenial too, so good for the British winters staying green and edible throughout.

Ingredients:
a little olive oil
1 chopped onion
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tin of tomatoes
water (fill tin and rinse out tomato juice with it)
cooked rice (we used about 2 cups of brown rice here but the quantity is variable – add more/less water if needed)
a good handful of fresh herbs (or a teaspoon of dried)
a squirt of tomato puree
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the onion and garlic in the oil for a few minutes then add tomatoes and water. Bring to the boil and turn down to simmer. Add your rice and herbs (fresh herbs are easiest cut in with a scissors) then the tomato puree. Cook for 10 minutes or so longer, stirring occasionally taste to check that the veg and herbs are cooked, season and enjoy!

If you liked this tomato rice soup, why not try some of our other frugal recipes?

the mermaid and the bear

“The first time the sea killed me, my brother brought me back to life.”

So begins THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR. Set in a castle, this historical novel features the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic and a love story.

Nettle Soup – Foraged Food – Two Recipes

cream of nettle soup
Primroses are edible too, sweet when warmed in the sun!

Nettle soup is a traditional springtime dish, eaten for both its nutrition and taste. Don’t worry – nettles don’t sting when cooked!

Don’t gather nettles or other wild food beside a busy road where it will have been contaminated by traffic fumes. If you keep cutting them you’ll get a regular supply of fresh young leaves, though they can get a bit insect infested during the summer! The older leaves are not good to eat and are hard on the digestive system.

Below are two different recipes for soup.

A ‘cream of’ style nettle soup

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable margarine or oil
  • 2 tablespoons of white flour
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • Freshly picked and washed young nettles (several good handfuls – picked with gloves and caution!)
  • 2 cups soya milk (tesco value is cheap and organic too) OR a handful of soaked cashew nuts
  • 1 cup water or stock
  • salt and pepper to taste

Fry the onion and garlic in the oil or marg. for a few minutes then stir in the nettles (no need to chop or remove stalks) until they soften. Stir in the flour and gradually add the soya milk and water or stock, stirring all the time. Add seasonings and blend.

Soup with nettles and potatoes

nettle soup with potato

Ingredient quantities are totally adjustable:

Do an onion and 5 garlic cloves in some oil. Add half head of celery and two potatoes, cover with water, bring to boil and simmer till soft. Then add the gathered nettles, some sage and parsley (feel free to experiment with other herbs but sage is great in this), a stock cube and salt to taste. Cook for for a few minutes and blend.


food for free -  a classic book on foraging

Food for Free by Richard Mabey is a great guide to Britain’s wild foods. A favourite reference tool of ours, detailing wild herbs, berries, greens, sea vegetables and fungi. 

Buy from Amazon


Other wild food recipes on site: dandelion fritterscreamy carrot and wild garlic soup and wild garlic pesto

Another good nettle recipe, Minty Pea and Nettle Soup is to be found here on the vegan family house site.

Frugal Autumn Recipes: Soup and Pumpkins

Roast Pumpkin and Garlic Soup: frugal autumn recipes

Well, lots has happened here in Frugal Towers since we last wrote. There’s been hospitalisations, there’s been strange symptoms… now there’s bandages and medicine. But the frugal life goes on, as does this peculiar year!

Frugal autumn recipes are on the table:
Roast Pumpkin and Garlic Pasta is seasonal and delicious.
Yellow Split Pea Soup, a great favourite here.
Tomato and Rice Soup is one of our most frugal recipes.
Lentil, yes bring on the soups!
Beer Battered Onion Rings – always good…
Gluten-free Veggie Lasagne – filling for these cold dark evenings.
Baked Tatties, sometimes the simplest things are the best.
Chocolate Cake. No words needed.

See our Frugal Christmas section on how to minimise the cost and stress that can occur at this time. Some festive recipes too.

If you want to stock those cupboards up, Approved Food is the place to do it, selling soap and cleaning products too. Their stock changes daily.

Everything5pounds is the place to get cheap winter woolies for the approaching season. Also good for festive gifts.

The Mermaid and the Bear Cover

Our founder’s debut novel is still available to read for free on Kindle Unlimited (they do a free trial which is a good way to stock up on some autumn reading). THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR, blends an often overlooked period of history, the Scottish witchcraft accusations, in particular the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic, with a love story. Libraries can get it too.

Amazon UK

Amazon Worldwide

Author website

Stay cosy and well fed. Look after yourselves lovelies.

All at Frugal Living in the UK
http://www.frugal.org.uk

and on Twitter: https://twitter.com/frugaluk
and now, Facebook!

Immune Boosting and Store Cupboard Recipes

What strange times we are living through. We very much hope that you are all well and safe and have plenty to eat and plenty of, the now most popular item in Britain, toilet roll!

Our recipe selection this time focuses on two things: immune support and meals from store cupboard ingredients.

First the immune system:
Wild Garlic Pesto – can be made with standard garlic too, both being anti-infective and immune boosting.
Nettle Soup – eat up those nutrients! And enjoy the anti-inflammatory properties of nettle (just poking through the ground now).
Sweet & Sour Red Cabbage – a brand new recipe on the site, this one, super cheap and also rich in nutrients.

Store Cupboard:
Yellow Split Pea Soup – delicious and nutrious.
Chick Pea Curry – super cheap and easy, can be made with dried or tinned chick peas.
Mixed Bean Casserole
and one that fits both categories: Chunky Purple Pasta

If you are experiencing anxiety over the current crisis, you could try a tapping meditation. There’s a free specific one here and basic information on the tapping points here

And if you want to stock those cupboards up, it’s better to do it somewhere that is set up for the purpose, rather than depleting the stocks that everyone needs. Approved Food is one such bargain place, selling soap and cleaning products too. And sometimes even toilet roll! Their stock changes daily.


Still a bargain for a traditionally published book at £2.99 for the ebook, our founder’s debut novel, THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR, blends an often overlooked period of history, the Scottish witchcraft accusations, in particular the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic, with a love story.

Amazon

Author website

Wishing you all very well, in all meanings of the word!

All at Frugal Living in the UK
http://www.frugal.org.uk

and on Twitter: https://twitter.com/frugaluk
and now, Facebook!

Summertime… and the living is easy, or Frugal!

tent in the garden

Summer is well underway here in Scotland. The heatwave actually reached this far North this time. We’ve been cooling off in the tent, and eating ice lollies in the garden: cheapest holiday ever!

Don’t miss our frugal days out and holiday page here.

Everything5Pounds have lots of great £5 summer deals on clothes and accessories for the heat, such as dresses and sandals and swimsuits. See them here.

Cooling, summer day foods:
Minted Noodle Soup
Basic Pasties (great cold)!
Rice Salad
Hummus
Ice Lollies

Favourites:
Make a Few Pounds
Food Shopping Tips

Stay Cool!

All at Frugal Living in the UK
http://www.frugal.org.uk

and on Twitter: https://twitter.com/frugaluk
and now, Facebook!

Wild Food, Snow Food!

Last week we got excited about wild food: the wild garlic was through, we were looking forward to wild garlic pesto and creamy wild garlic carrot soup and anticipating nettle soup and dandelion fritters.

Then came the snow. Road blocking, face freezing, wild garlic covering, snow.

So we’re wrapped up warm in our £5 jumpers and back on the yellow split pea soup, the leek and potato and the mince and dumplings 🙂

In case you missed it last time, our latest super frugal post: The 25p Meal.

Keep really really cosy!

All at Frugal Living in the UK
http://www.frugal.org.uk

and on Twitter: https://twitter.com/frugaluk
and now, Facebook!