Posted on 11th March, 2018

The Ten-Minute Soup Saviour


We’ve all been there when the question of ‘what can I take to work for lunch’ comes up. Unless of course you’re the person who walks into a sandwich shop and pays through the nose for a ready-made sandwich, crisps and a can on a ‘meal deal’ (a word to the wise-it’s no deal). Obviously making said sandwich at home is the economic thing to do and if you need crisps then buy a multi-pack and take a bag with you, however sandwiches are A) dull and B) not suitable for moi as I don’t eat overly processed wheat. Some of you will be ‘lucky’ enough to have a canteen at work and, don't get me wrong, I’m sure some work canteens are havens of culinary treats but on the whole they’re not really are they? Plus even if it’s subsidised, it’s still a lot of money on a daily basis.


Generally, when I’m being organised, I retain a little of last night’s dinner (if suitable) and take that with me to re-heat in the microwave. I’m sure there are plenty of you that do the same but what if last night’s dinner wasn’t something you can re-heat or keep back? Well an interesting salad is always a good option, chopped up and dressed simply it can be great but, when it’s cold, for me soup is always a winner. Now again, and I’m sure we’ve all done it (I have certainly), we’ll pop into a shop on the way to work and pick up a chilled (plastic) carton of ready-made soup or grab a ring-pull can of gloop to re-heat at work. I have issues with both of these because A) the chilled option is extortionate and rarely has the flavour you expect and B) the canned option is usually either too salty or too bland and bears no resemblance to its glowing description. What’s the alternative then without hours of preparation and cooking time? How about a spicy tomato soup, prepared in minutes,  that cooks while you’re in the shower and is ready in as little as ten minutes? Doable? Yes it is.


Canned tomatoes are surely the basic stand-by in all store cupboards, whether you’re a vegetarian or not, and if you add onion and sweet peppers plus a good dollop of spice you’re onto a winner. Think about it, your own soup in a sealable container ready to pop into your bag in minutes. Ideal for those watching their weight too but particularly those watching the pennies, that’s all of us right?


Making soup requires no real cooking ability, it’s the simplest form of cooking in my opinion, and apart from the ingredients the only other requirement is a blender (a hand blender is ideal but a liquidiser is fine too).  Choose ingredients that you have available but make sure they are quick to cook. I used sweet peppers but tenderstem broccoli would work, courgettes too but the good thing about peppers is they really add a depth of flavour and they won’t muddy the colour either.


I’m sure some of you are thinking it’s a daft idea and 'who has time’ but really a few minutes chopping plus a minute blitzing is all it takes because it will simply simmer while you’re dressing or showering. Personally I didn’t take anything to go with my soup but you could take bread or crispbread if you feel it’s not enough.


Remember as always the recipe is simply a guide, an idea, something to get you started so I hope you have a go. Why not practice when you have loads of time to reassure yourself you can get it done.



Small onion (or half a medium onion-you can use the rest for something else)

Small yellow pepper (or again half of a larger one)

Half tin of chopped plum tomatoes

Garlic (easiest is a ready to use tube)

Dried parsley (you could substitute with rosemary, not too much though, or oregano for a Mediterranean vibe)

½ slices jalapeno peppers (from a jar) or a few dried chilli flakes

A little oil


Salt & pepper to taste.




Finely chop the onion and pepper and gently fry in the oil, add a squeeze of garlic, half a teaspoon of herb,  the chopped chilli or chilli flakes, a good teaspoon of paprika. Pour in the tomatoes, top up with a little water or stock. Set to a simmer and go and shower/dress/sort out the kids/have a cup of tea and by the time you’re done the soup will be ready to blitz. A hand blender means you can whizz up in the saucepan but pouring into a liquidizer really takes no longer. Add a little more water if too thick. Season to taste. Et voila it’s ready to put into a container (make sure it’s well sealed) put it in a carrier bag/plastic food bag to make sure any leaks don’t contaminate your bag and away you go. Microwaveable in a couple of minutes.


Don’t forget to share your pictures or add or a comment. Bon Appetite.



Make A Comment

Characters left: 2000

Comments (0)