Why I'll never be a food stylist!

As the leaves start falling and the temperatures flirt with the single digits, all I want to do in the evenings is cosy up in front of the fireplace, drink hot chocolate and read a good book. Unfortunately hunger pangs rear their demanding heads once in a while, so I need to cook something substantial to eat. This is the time of the year when soups and sandwiches make their appearance regularly in the Papaya household- I love the comforting aromas of a good soup bubbling away on the stove and the sandwiches are to feed the heartier appetites.

This weekend I kick-started our new winter menu with the soup-sandwich combination above. It's a simple pumpkin-potato soup with a parsley pesto thick yogurt (or dahi butter) garnish and the sandwiches are parsley pesto, avocado, tomato & lettuce paninis. The yogurt adds a tanginess and creaminess to the soup while the pesto added a hint of freshness- we thought the flavors blended well together.

The picture isnt quite what I wanted it to be, I wanted 3 distinct colors in the soup. The pumpkin orange, with the green pesto drizzled on top and pristine white yogurt in the center. Of course, the pesto didnt drizzle well and after a couple of tries I gave up and mixed it with the yogurt. Then the yogurt wouldnt arrange itself the way I wanted it to, and of course it wouldnt float. I have a new appreciation for food stylists and for the patience and talent of people with food blogs.

If you want to make paninis at home and dont have a panini press try this simple trick I picked up from Rachel Ray on the Food Network. Place your sandwich in a fry pan/ grill and then use something heavy to press it. I like to use a saucepan filled with water. Presto paninis!! Clean up is a breeze too.

For the pesto: Process parsley leaves, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, almonds, grated parmesan cheese in a food processor adding olive oil until it all combines together.

Happy Halloween everyone!!




6 comments:

asaaan said...

Yummo :)

I love soups. I have a neat trick.
I throw whatever veggies I have left, cover with chicken stock(if I have some and if not just water), bay leaves, wostershire sauce, salt, and stew for 1-2 hurs on medium. Turn off. Let it cool.
Puree the entire thing in a blender. Instant thick and creamy soup. And you make whatever you want to be the dominant taste, Pumpkins or sweet potato or brocoli.

Actually you can then also transfer it back and add some yogurt or whipping cream to give it a creamier taste. Sometimes, I throw in salsa.

Love soups

couchpapaya said...

asaaan - wostershire sauce sounds like an idea, i would never have thought of it !! i'm almost never planned enough to have chicken stock in the house, so mostly i end up adding water ...

samir said...

Excellent post, We too make a similar panini sandwich. Will try out that pumpkin soup soon.
Happy Halloween to you & your family.

Bouncing-Bubble said...

the picture isn't bad at all. I love soups, but just getting plain lazy to make them along with usual dinner.

couchpapaya said...

samir - actually the pumpkin soup was from that recipe you said ur wife made sometime ago. i just added chilli flakes, bay leaf and potatoes. was yum! thanks!!

bubbles - thx!! i dont cook soup + dinner, generally soup's the star for us :D most of the times i make sure it's a hearty soup so i dont need the additional sandiwches or salad alongside. i'm now trying to perfect a tomato soup with pumpkin. in the SI thalis in karnataka we get this delicious soup and i love it. it's always called tomato soup but smeone told me the extra flavour came from adding pumpkin so i'm trying to recreate it!! if u know a recipe, do let me know !!

Smita said...

Though the pic is not bad but I can understand if it doesn't look how u want it to.

Sometimes my subzi wud look so bad but taste very good but seeing it the way it is takes away half the magic :-(

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