Wednesday 28 November 2012

Sponsored Post: Carrot and Ginger Soup featuring the Gourmet Garden Range

This week I have been feeling a tad sorry for myself as I am suffering with a classic case of winter flu. Whenever I am ill, I always crave comfort food - which is typically a good winter soup for me. Today I cooked a batch of Carrot and Ginger Soup to hopefully ease the symptoms a little and warm me up in this cold weather! Ginger is a really great cold remedy as it is a natural decongestant and also helps with pain relief and cold prevention. Carrots keep your immune system healthy and help you to fight off unwelcome germs and infections, so hopefully the combination of the two will help to sort my cold right out!

I don't know if you have noticed, but I really love cooking. However, I often find when I'm cooking that there will be some ingredients - like ginger, and other herbs and spices that I don't typically tend to include in my weekly shop. I do buy herbs and spices in the supermarket, but I always get frustrated that I often only use a little of them and then they go off in so quickly. I wish I was green-fingered enough to have a whole herb garden flourishing on my kitchen windowsill, but unfortunately, it seems that me and plants, just don't mix.

That's why I was happy to discover Gourmet Garden  - a company who are fairly new to the UK who are committed to making herbs and spices easy for every day cooking.

How have they done this? By creating an alternative - fresh herbs and spices, in a tube, which keep their taste for months and are great for every day cooking. The Gourmet Garden range features 10 different herbs and spices, plus four blends of world spices. I think these are a really great idea as having more herbs and spices to hand adds so much more flavour to cooking and opens up so many more options - for beginner and seasoned cooks alike.

I used the Gourmet Garden fresh Ginger tube in my soup. The ginger worked really well and made a great alternative to traditional fresh ginger. I also thought that the flavour was a little stronger and I liked that it was a smooth paste, rather than 'bits' as my kids call them. I would definitely recommend trying the Gourmet Garden range for yourself and seeing what you think.

Currently, Gourmet Garden are currently searching for the UK and Ireland's best "Blogger-come Chef" to experiment with their range and create some wonderful recipes.

The overall winner will win a trip to Australia’s Sunshine Coast, for the Gourmet Garden International Bloggers Conference, as well as £3000 prize and a 12 month ambassadorship position with Gourmet Garden.

The competition will culminate in a live cook-off in London, in front of one of Britain’s best loved chefs.

Upon entry you will be sent a pack of Gourmet Garden products to use in your everyday cooking. Then your task is to get creative, experiment with the herbs and spices and create as many new recipes as you can to share on your blog.

You can enter the competiton on the Gourmet Garden website.

Here is the recipe for Carrot and Ginger Soup below. I hope you enjoy it, and please try it if you have a cold as it works wonders!

Carrot and Ginger Soup

1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 Onion, chopped
1 tbsp Gourmet Garden Ginger Paste
800g Carrots 
800ml Vegetable Stock
1 tbsp Coriander, (garden gourmet paste, or fresh)

  • In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil, and cook the onion and ginger for around 5 minutes, or until the onion has softened.
  • Add the carrots and vegetable stock to the pan and stir well. Bring the mixture to the boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes, until the carrot has softened.
  • Allow to cool a little and then process in the blender until smooth. 
  • To reheat, return to the saucepan and add a little extra water if the soup is too thick for your taste.
  • Season to taste, stir in the coriander and then serve.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post which I received payment for

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