The fact that Veggie was on hold a bit, or a lot actually, was not because of a lack of my interest, or even inspiration… not at all! But mainly because we decided to move from Amsterdam to Ibiza with our three kids, three horses, dog and a cat.
So, yeah, where do you begin telling a story, when you want to cover the past 10 months? Right at the beginning I guess. It just took a little bit longer than I expected, to get a hold on things again, to mingle in, to find my way, to learn the language, to find the good stores for my particular ingredients, to cook, etc. Not that it’s been hard, absolutely not, just different. And you have to somehow find your rhythm again. Slowly but surely we all found our way in our new life. Instead of the tremendous feeling of being on a permanent holiday, we slowly came to a more realistic regularity of work, school, and fun at the same time. Life just changed dramatically, but in a very good way.
Our decision to move to Spain, Ibiza, was because of the fact that we always have loved the island and that we also wanted to give our kids the opportunity to grow up in a different country, to learn more languages, and to experience this adventure. Before we couldn’t anymore, actually, since our oldest son was already 13 years old. But we also love the temperature, the amazingly beautiful environment, to live mostly outdoors and to enjoy the majestic nature.
Our kids grew up in a city, and although it had its charms, we thought it would be time for a change.
We found this amazing finca (very old typical white Ibicenco house) in the north of the island, with so much land around it, that we could easily have our horses in the backyard, instead of in stables, miles away from our home. We could grow our own vegetables, something I have been aiming for for years, and what we are actually doing right now. And we could enjoy life outside in the sun instead of inside, on the 3rd floor of an apartment building in the middle of a city. So yes, the choice was easy, and not too surprisingly, also for our kids. (Of course I have to say, that getting a pool makes all decisions easier! 🙂 )
Although I sometimes miss my mom, my family and friends, they often come and visit us, and I also go back to Holland now and then for photoshoots etc. Honestly, I think we couldn’t have made a better decision!
Our little one of three (they go to school in Spain when three years old, hurray!!) goes to school in the nearest little village. It takes us about an 8 minute drive through the mountains, to bring him there every morning, and to pick him up again at two. (Happily our two eldest, who are both in high school now, are being picked up, and brought back again by the public school bus!)
Anyway, this is how it goes: we start working at about 09:30, when little Wolf is in school. And we pick him up again at two. Most of the time my husband is already in the village because we have a little office there, since the internet connection at the house isn’t something to celebrate. So, I go down, we meet at the local restaurant and eat a ‘sopa del dia’, the soup of the day. (Except on Tuesday, when there’s fish in it, which I obviously don’t like). Anyway, my absolute favorite is the chickpea soup with spinach and potatoes. A traditional Spanish soup, which they call ‘potage de vigilia’. After eating it so many times I wanted to try this at home, to get the ingredients right. But then I figured it would just been as easy to ask the cook, the mom of a Spanish family who runs the restaurant for 3 decades now. And I guess, because of my enthusiasm every single day after eating one of her amazing soups, she was willing to tell.
So here it comes, a family secret, and one of the best soups you’ll ever eat!
PS: Please forgive me that the style, the kitchen and the environment you were used to, when looking at Veggie Very Much has changed. You’ll now have to settle for this outside kitchen, some mountains and a lot of sun! 🙂
INGREDIENTS FOR A BIG FAMILY POT
2 medium sized onions
1,5 tsp grounded curry
1 tsp grounded paprika
0,5 tsp grounded curcuma
0,5 tsp grounded cumin
1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil + 4 tbsp. extra
2 large potatoes
3 large garlic cloves
300 gr spinach
800 gr pre-soaked chickpeas, pre-soaked or leaked
200 gr green beans / haricots verts
3 vegetable stock tablets
1,5 L water
3 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
First of all, I used pre-soaked chickpeas. I soaked them for a night, and the next day they were already twice as big. But you can also just buy them in a pot or can, just as well. They only thing is that you don’t have to cook them as long. If you do use pre- soaked chickpeas, I recommend cooking them for half an hour before adding them to the soup.
Cut the onions in little pieces
than, put three eggs to a boil, for about 10 minutes, until they are hard. Pour cold water over them and set aside.
Poor 4 tbsp. of olive oil in a skillet, add 1,5 large tsp of curry and 1 tsp of paprika powder to the skillet, add 0,5 large tsp cumin and 0,5 large tsp of curcuma to the pot. Chop 3 garlic cloves and add them as well.
Stir fry for about 7 minutes until the onions are soft on medium heat, but be careful the herbs won’t burn. In that case you turn the heat lower or and add a little extra olive oil.
Wash 150 to 200 gr green beans / haricots vert, chop them in pieces of approximately 2 cm. Cut two zucchini’s in cubes of 1 cm and add them to the skillet.
Peel the potatoes and also cut them in cubes. Add all the vegetables to the skillet.
Use about 800 gr chickpeas, add them as well. Use 1,5 L water and add three vegetable stock cubes. I poured all the vegetables and water in a bigger pot.
Cut 300 gr of spinach, add them to the pot together with 3 tsp. of sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
Now comes the big secret! Add 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil to the pot and bring everything to a boil. Simmer on low heat for about 1,5 hour.
Peel the three hard boiled eggs, cut them into tiny pieces and add them after 1,5 hour to the soup.
tThis is it! Maybe add a little extra salt or grounded pepper to taste and serve with some fresh bread.