Thrifty things – soup mugs

I started collecting these cute soup bowls when we were living in our first apartment. I found my first two {onion and mushroom} together in a charity shop, and ever since then, I’ve been finding the odd mug all over the country. I picked up my sixth mug yesterday and I now have a nice little collection. I’m particularly intrigued with the mulligatawny recipe which includes mutton, curry, parsnip, and other interesting combinations …
Onion and mushroom soup – €2 each at Gorta, scotch broth – €1 Mrs. Quin’s Shop, oxtail and tomato soup – €1 each again at Gorta, mulligatawny –  €1 from Vincents

Holy guacamole

A recipe my fiance has perfected is guacamole. And does he ever make a mean guacamole. Robert started making it toward the end of my college course when it was either he makes us dinner, or we starve. He’s a big fan of spice, I unfortunately can’t handle much of it, so I feel he dials down the spiciness for me. I find the level of chili and garlic he uses has a nice kick, but if you have a higher {or normal} spice tolerance, you’ll want to add more. If you’re interested in this laid back dinner alternative, all the details can be found below …


    4 avocados
    1 birds eye chili {or more if you can handle it}
    3-5 cloves of garlic {as much as you want really}
    juice from 1-2 limes
    salt and pepper
tub of sour cream

Add all the guacamole ingredients into a large bowl and roughly chop and mash mash. You can choose to skip the mashing and go straight to blending if you so wish. Use a hand blender to roughly pure the guacamole in places, and leave some parts chunky, if you like. I like a bit of bite to mine. Robert has found that the higher the ratio of ingredients to the avocado’s, the nicer and a better bite the guacamole has. But that’s just us. To each his own.  

Serve with sour cream and nachos. Serves 2 hungry people for a relaxed dinner in front of the tv, or 4+ people for casual snacking. 

Broccoli and almonds and yogurt – oh my!

Last night offered broccoli soup for dinner. It’s an old sturdy favorite of mine from the Avoca Soup collection. A very yummy soup which will sneakily get greens into even the most hostile broccoli hater, and that is why I’m sharing this jem. I started making this soup when my fiance flat out refused to eat broccoli of any kind. Raw, smothered in dip, stir fry, you name it. But once I whipped up this little number, I found the loop hole. Should you like to try this simple and easy recipe, check it out below … 

150g slivered almonds
50g butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 potatoes, chopped
1 litre light chicken stock
250g broccoli, stems and florets, diced
4 dessertspoons full-fat Greek style yogurt

Before you add anything to your soup pot, dry roast the almonds in the pot on a medium heat until golden. Remove almonds from pot. 

Add the olive oil and butter, as well as chopped onions. Cook until softened, and then add the chopped potato {the recipe calls for the potatoes to be peeled, but all the nutrition is found just beneath the skin of a potato so I include the entire potato. Plus I’m lazy. It’ll get blitzed later so don’t worry about the skin}, season with salt and pepper, then pour in your stock. I usually add the broccoli stems {not florets} at this point since they’re much thicker, and need longer to cook. Simmer until the potatoes and stems are cooked. Add the florets and 3/4 of the almonds 5 minutes before it’s finished cooking / ready to serve. Szuszh with a blender until smooth, and serve with a dollop of  Greek style yogurt, and a sprinkle of the remaining almonds. Dive right in.  
Click here for a handy cooking calculator, should you prefer to measure in cups, mls, oz etc.