World Cancer Day this year is on Sunday 4th February and I’ve been working with Macmillan Cancer Support to create a delicious recipe that would make a delicious starter for your Sunday lunch or just a wonderfully simple and tasty supper. When you’re going through treatment there are so many things on your mind it’s easy to overlook the importance of a nourishing diet.
I have over 30 years’ experience providing nutritional support for people affected by cancer. It’s not just nourishment that my patients need; it’s tips and solutions for problems like a sore mouth or unpleasant taste in the mouth, which are common side effects of cancer treatment. I’ve found simple, nutritious recipes are crowd pleasers and my pea and mint soup is no different. It’s easy (and cheap) to cook, and perfect for preparing in large batches, so you can have some stashed in the freezer for days when you don’t want to fuss too long in the kitchen.
The soup is vibrant, full of goodness, slips down easily and the fibre will keep you feeling full and satisfied. The mint is great for refreshing your taste buds and it soothes the gut for easier digestion. You can add cream to the recipe if you want to add some extra calories to the dish, or a sprinkling of ground seeds will spruce up a midweek meal in no time.
On World Cancer Day, why not take a batch of soup to a loved one living with cancer and spend some time with them over a warming bowlful? Leave what’s left in the freezer so they have another midweek treat to look forward to. Sometimes it’s not grand acts of kindness that matter the most; it’s the small things that really count.
World Cancer Day pea and mint soup
For the soup
- splash of olive oil
- 1 small leek, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, finely chopped
- 1 stick of celery, finely chopped
- 1 small potato, peeled and chopped
- 1 litre vegetable stock (organic vegetable bouillon is best)
- large handful of washed spinach
- 250g frozen peas
- 6 fresh mint leaves
For the croutons
- wholemeal, rye or all-in-one bread, torn into small chunks
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon ground seed mix
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/Gas Mark 4.
- Set a medium-sized pan over a good heat and add your oil, leek, carrot and celery and gently fry until soft.
- Add the potato and stock and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Finally, add the spinach and peas and simmer until the peas are cooked but still bright green (approximately 5 minutes).
- While you are waiting for the soup to cook through, put all the crouton ingredients in a bowl and mix together.
- Tip everything onto a baking tray and place in the oven for 10 minutes until golden and crispy.
- When the soup is ready, add the fresh mint leaves, blitz until smooth and then serve with the croutons floating on top.
This year, Macmillan is encouraging #LittleActsOfKindness to help support people living with cancer on World Cancer Day and every day in between. Share your #LittleActsOfKindness on Twitter or Facebook and watch Macmillan’s video with people sharing stories of how they have been helped.