It’s a cold and gloomy day. Your feet have not quite warmed up all day, despite the heating being on, and their being clad in thick wool tights and slippers. You silently curse your bad circulation and take another sip of the nettle tea that is supposed to be packed full of good things to get you through this season. You’ve added a generous teaspoon of honey to help it down.
The evening draws in outside, just barely 4pm, and you glance around at the lengthening shadows in the room and decide you are done for the day. No more sitting in front of the laptop pretending to be doing something productive. Instead, you close the screen and head towards the kitchen. There, you light a couple of scented candles on the countertop, turn the music on to you current favourite Christmas tunes (Branches and Laura Cooke stealing the top spots today) and start pulling ingredients out of the fridge.
An onion is roughly and quickly chopped before it can have a chance to make you cry. The half celeriac left over from the roast veg and millet salad you made on Monday follows the onion into the pan. It makes your hands smell of celery, which you hate, but it has proven to you time and again that it tastes so very far superior.
Finally the bright carrots go in, their orange cheerfulness making you feel spontaneously happy. The stock is poured on top, the heat turned up and you sit back to write a few Christmas cards to friends and family far away as the pot simmers away next to you.
Here is a way to chase away the darkness – find the brightest, sweetest, most cheerful vegetables you can and combine them into a life-giving, body-nourishing, soul-cheering soup.
You do not need to be a great cook, you don’t even need a recipe – just chop some vegetables, add stock so you just cover the veg in the pan, and cook until soft. Blitz it with a handheld blender to the desired chunkyness, drizzle a little flaxseed oil on top for the extra health benefits, maybe a few home made croutons if you like, and you’re done.