the tree

That tree that you see is one of my favourite trees around here, it stands there all alone in the middle of a field of grass and when I happen to pass with a camera I always have to take a picture of it. Maybe it is because it is all lonely or because it looks so perfectly tree like or maybe I somehow identify myself with it, both as an expat and on a more personal level. Or maybe not. Maybe it is just because it is a beautiful tree that is standing in a position that makes it attractive to photograph.


On the same stretch of walk, there is another view that attracts me a lot. I really like the symmetries and patterns that is created through threes, terracing and wilderness if you can talk about that here. The landscape made garden when it is really the opposite in the sense that the plants on rows are plants grown for gardens and not in gardens yet. This is an area of plant schools and wherever you go, you are bound to find plants and trees growing in straight rows, something I find very attractive actually, there is something mesmerising about the symmetry and repetition of it.

brussels sprouts diptych

Brussels sprouts grow in rows too but on a common stalk instead
, I think it is a brilliant way, think of all the space that is saved in this way. And it looks fantastic too. I like Brussels sprouts, well if I didn’t I would hardly post a recipe of a Brussels sprout soup but it is not only the taste I like, the small girl in me like the size of them too, the doll size of them is pretty and I think it is nice to see perfect small scale cabbage heads in a bowl, it makes me feel like Gulliver in Lilliput. They must look great in doll’s houses too now when I come to think of it. But enough of that, time for the soup! The chestnuts are not obligatory but I suggest you to try it because they add a sweetness to the sprouts that I truly enjoy.

Winter Soup With Brussels Sprouts, Potatoes, Rosemary and Chestnuts

3-4 servings

200 g/ 7 oz Brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
200g/ 7 oz potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 small onion, sliced
a small sprig of fresh rosemary
10-12 dried chestnuts
6 tblsp white wine
1000 ml/ 4,2 light stock or water
extra-virgin olive oil

– Braise the Brussels sprouts and onion in olive oil, adding the white wine a little at a time, together with chestnuts and rosemary for about 6-7 minutes or more if needed.
– Add potato, let it cook along for a couple of minutes and then pour the stock into the pan. Leave to simmer without lid for another 10 minutes.
– Take out the chestnuts and chop them.
– Now you can choose between mashing the vegetables with a fork like I did or run it in a blender until smooth.
– Serve topped with chopped chestnuts.

Winter Soup With Brussels Sprouts, Potatoes, Rosemary and Chestnuts

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