Tasty treats

The Nutrition and Health Foundation has teamed up with top chef Rozanne Stephens who has come up with quick and nutritious, budget friendly recipes.

Hearty Tuscan bean soup

Ingredients

Two tablespoons of olive oil; two medium onions, diced; two cloves of crushed garlic; 200g thick bacon pieces, diced; two medium carrots, diced; four sticks of celery, diced; two tins of chopped tomatoes; two tablespoons of tomato paste; half a medium of Savoy cabbage, finely shredded; one medium courgette, diced; two sprigs of fresh thyme; one litre of beef stock; one tin of borlotti beans; six thick slices of ciabatta bread, toasted and parmesan cheese.

Method

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Cook the bacon till crispy then add the onion, celery, carrot, thyme and garlic and cook until soft.

Stir in the cabbage, courgettes and thyme and wilt them down a little.

Pour in the stock, chopped tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to the boil then cover and reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.

Drain and rinse the beans and add to the pot for a further 10 minutes.

Season to taste and remove the thyme twigs.

Toast or grill thick slices of the ciabatta. Place on the bottom of a soup bowl and pour over the piping hot soup. Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese.

Poached pears and dark chocolate sauce

Ingredients

Four fresh pears or one tin of pears; one vanilla pod; one cinnamon stick; 200g dark chocolate; 100ml cream; half a teaspoon of stem ginger in syrup; one tablespoon of ginger syrup from jar; two tablespoons of roasted chopped hazelnuts and 500ml natural yoghurt, to serve.

Method

If the pairs are fresh, peel and core them and place them in a pot. Cover with water, add the vanilla pod and cinnamon and simmer until tender. The fresh pears will be poached for 30 minutes or longer, depending how hard they are. Poach the tinned ones for five minutes.

Remove from the water and keep warm.

To make the chocolate sauce, place a glass bowl over a pot of simmering water. Pour the cream into the bowl and heat up. Once the cream in bubbling, add the chopped ginger, ginger syrup and break up the dark chocolate.

Stir over the heat until the chocolate melts.

Spoon the chocolate sauce over the pears and sprinkle over the nuts, serve with yoghurt.

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