Fresh Broad Bean Soup

Fresh Beans are well in season now and if you have an abundance of Beans in your fridge, here is a delicious soup you can prepare.  I know that most of us locally use the fresh beans to make "Kosksu bil-ful" pasta with beans, but i have been trying to come up with a simple yet delicious soup for a couple weeks so here goes.  You will need the following -
1 medium onion - finely chopped
1 medium potato - peeled and chopped into little bites
1 medium leek - sliced
500g fresh broad beans - podded and peeled.
Chicken stock

Start off by placing a little bit of oil in a pot and add the onions.  Cook until they have softened slightly. Next add the potatoes and the leeks. Add the beans and enough stock to cover the vegetables completely.

Allow the vegetables to simmer for about 30 minutes and once the stock is reduced switch the heat off and let the pot rest in the same burner - now switched off and with the lid on for another 10 to 15 minutes.

This soup needs time for the delicate flavours to seep into the stock so don't rush it.

Even though the recipe calls for fresh beans, if they are out of season, you can replace them with frozen ones even though the taste will be slightly different. Do not use the tinned beans however and the taste is lacking considerably.

Serve this soup with some crusty Maltese bread and some fresh gbejniet - Cheeselets

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Cherry Almond Cake

I couldn't resist making a cherry cake once I saw the delicious and plump cherries at M&S. these are completely different to the candied cherries we are used to. And the most apparent difference is the colouring!

To make this tea-time cherry cake you will need –
300g unsalted butter
400g sugar
4 eggs
300g self-raising flour
150g pure ground almonds
200g M&S Morello Cherries

Start off by beating the butter and the sugar together until the butter turns pale and creamy. Next add the eggs one at a time beating well after every addition. Now in a separate bowl sift the flour and add the almonds and stir using a spoon to incorporate the two well.

Add the flour slowly into the egg, butter mixture leaving about a third behind. Now switch the beater off and add the cherries into the remaining almond flour mixture. Stir slowly using a wooden spoon to coat the cherries with flour without breaking them.

Add the coated cherries and remaining flour into the cake mixture and stir gently using the same wooden spoon.

Pour the cake mixture into a 9inch non-stick cake pan and bake in a pre-heated oven at 160C for about 30 minutes.