quick and easy root vegetable soup

Autumn days are made for root vegetable soup. When the leaves are turning, the wind's picking up and the harvest crops are flooding the shops, we make soup.

And no better soup than a quick and easy soup, because I can't be arsed with any other type. Call me quick, call me easy and I am there with apron on, chopping up my veggies, grappling my gourds.

This Saturday I happened to hit the root vegetable jackpot and I didn't even mean too, I had to improvise lunch because I didn't have enough leeks to make leek and potato soup. And strictly speaking a squash is not a root vegetable but you will forgive this faux pas when you give this soup a try because it's busting at the seams with goodness, it's hot, it's sweet and very earthy. You are going to love it and not least because it's orange. Orange is the new soup.

Ingredients

3 or 4 large carrots

1 big or 4/5 small potatoes

1 sweet potato

1 squash

2 tablespoons of sunflower or olive oil

1 tablespoon of butter

1 pint of vegetable stock plus 1 pint of boiling water

2 teaspoons of ground cumin

1 teaspoon of chilli flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

Single cream (optional)

Method

Cut all the vegetables into smallish chunks. Melt the oil and butter in a big saucepan and add the veg letting it cook away happily for 10 or 15 minutes and giving it the odd stir.

Add the stock, the ground cumin and the chilli flakes and simmer for 20 or 30 minutes. I use one pint of stock and one pint of water because the Marigold Bouillon stock I use is very salty, you can use all stock if you prefer.

Liquidise the soup and return to the pan, heat through and season to taste.

That is it. Soup is on the table. Serve on its own or add a swirl of single cream and enjoy.