Alphabet soup

Panther is a very good little eater. Getting her to eat anything and everything has been my project for the last two and a half years because I want her to learn to properly love her food and eat healthily and well. So when I find something she won’t eat, I have to work on it. I never just say she doesn’t eat anything, because at two she can’t possibly know that she definitely doesn’t like something, and if I don’t feed it her, how will she ever get to like it!?
Well, she used to eat soup. We used to buy it her when she ate at the gym (as it only cost £1.80!) and she ate it well. But then we changed what we did gym-wise and she didn’t have the opportunity to eat soup any more. And now, about 6 months later, it’s winter and I want to eat lots of soup… Ad nursery keep feeding her soup… And panther won’t touch it! Apparently at nursery she will do her bread in it, but for me she won’t even do that! So I needed some strategies to get her to eat it… She can’t miss out on the whole world of soup! So far I have two ideas for encouraging soup ideas. The first, although I doubt if I’ll have chance before Christmas, is to take her down to the grocers to choose her veg, and come home and turn it into soup with me. I think the stick blender might appeal to her! The second is to include exciting stuff… Ie. pasta and veg. Rachel Allen’s cookbook suggested adding alphabet pasta to a soup, and I was impressed to find that sainsburys in Ripley stocked it (they also stocked orzo and flower pasta, so I will be going back if this works! Was going to just use the pasta in one of my soup recipes, but her recipe was easy so gave the whole thing a go. I have tried a small bowl and enjoyed it… Particularly the pasta bit… But we aren’t actually having it for lunch until tomorrow (and the next few days) so panther’s reaction will come in a postscript.
The recipe is from Rachel Allen’s home cooking, although altered a little

150g streaky bacon (I used normal bacon but left the fat on. About 5 rashers) thinly chopped with scissors
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tin of tomatoes
1 litre chicken stock
100g alphabet pasta
Basil (I used dried)

Fry the bacon for 3-4 mins until crispy
Add the onion and garlic, reduce the heat and cook for 8-10 mins
Add the tomatoes and stock and simmer on low heat for 15 mins to reduce slightly
Add the sugar, basil and seasoning and blend
Add the pasta shapes and cook for 5 mins

Rachel doesn’t do this as a blended soup, but I was a bit lazy in my chopping of the onion etc, so thought it would be better. Also I like thicker soups
Rachel adds seasoning etc much earlier but I think it’s better to taste it first!

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