Food & Drink Magazine

Spooky Spiced Kale Soup

By Mariealicerayner @MarieRynr
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With Halloween only 11 days away I've been working on creating some lovely Halloween treats and dinners in my kitchen.   I just love the holidays and I especially love Halloween.  I miss having the children around these days of course as there are only the two of us, but that doesn't mean that we can't enjoy ourselves and chow down on some tasty Halloween goodies anyways!
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I recently received a lovely Hamper from the Unilever Kitchen with the challenge to create some hearty recipes for Halloween!  You do know how I love to rise to a challenge and it was no different this time!  
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Included in the hamper was this cute little La Creuset single serving casserole dish so I was really anxious to use it in a recipe.  I decided that it would be perfect for soup as would the Kale which was included in the hamper.   Everyone loves Kale.  It's like "the IT girl" of cookery at the moment!   Everybody is using it!
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This is a delicious and easy soup which makes great use of store cupboard ingredients such as tinned beans and tomatoes  . . .  along with those gorgeous little Flavour Pots from Knorr.  I used both the Garden Herb and the Paprika ones for this recipe, along with some chicken stock cubes.
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I created a variety of crisp cheesy croutons to serve with the soup, using some of my cookie cutters.  There were pumpkin Jack-o-lanterns and crisp autumn leaves.   What fun!
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This is a delicious bone warming soup that will be perfect for Halloween and Bonfire night as well.  Not only scrumptious but also portable.  You could make it and take it in a thermous and pass out cups of it to warm those chilly hands on these cold and wet autumn evenings!
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*Spooky Spiced Kale Soup*Serves 10Printable Recipe  
Who was the most famous French Skeleton?  Napoleon - Bone - Apart!  A delicious bone warming spiced soup, topped with spooky croutons, perfect for Halloween night, Bon Fire Night, or any other night your fingers and toes need warming!  
90g of grated Parmesan cheese, divided1 TBS olive oila sturdy white loaf, cut into slicescayenne pepper to taste8 rashers of smoked streaky bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces1 large cooking onion, peeled and chopped2 400g tins of chopped tomatoes in tomato sauce, undrained (2 - 14.5 oz)2 415g tins of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (2 -  15 oz)785ml of boiling water (3 1/2 cups)2 chicken stock cubes1 Knorr Paprika Flavour Paste Pot1 Garden Herb Flavour Paste Pot1 bag of chopped curly kale (about 6 cups loosely packed)salt and black pepper to taste  
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Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6.  Have ready a baking sheet.  Using a cute cookie cutter (leaf, or pumpkin, moon, witch, etc.) cut shapes out of the bread.   Drizzle them with the olive oil.   Sprinkle with 1 TBS of cheese and a light dusting of cayenne.   Bake in the heated oven for about 10 minutes, until golden brown and crisp.  Remove and set aside.  
Cook the bacon in a large saucepan over medium heat until crisp.  Scoop out and set aside.   Add the chopped onion to the pan.  Cook, stirring frequently, until softened.  Add the beans, tomatoes, water, stock cubes, paste pots and bacon to the pan.  Add half of the remaining cheese.  Stir together well and then simmer over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes.  Taste and adjust seasoning as required.   Add the Kale and cook for ten minutes longer.  
Serve the soup in heated mugs or bowls, topped with the spooky croutons, and some of the remaining cheese.
Note - If you can't get the flavor pots use the following substitution . . .  1 tsp parsley flakes, 1 tsp dried chives, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika,  a broken bay leaf and a pinch of tarragon. 
Spooky Spiced Kale Soup 
Mwha ha ha ha .... Happy Halloween!!

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