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Nisha’s super simple tomato soup with a twist!

It’s healthy as heck, cheap as chips and utterly delicious! Nisha Katona’s transforming your classic tomato soup with just a touch of spice to make the ultimate Autumnal midweek treat. She serves it with puff pastry cheese twists.

Tomato and Nigella Soup

Serves: 4


2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp nigella seeds

4 garlic cloves, crushed

3 tins chopped tomatoes

400g/7oz canned butter beans,  drained

3 chicken stock cubes, crumbled

1 tsp ground turmeric

4 tbsp sugar, or to taste

Salt, to taste

2 tbsp crème fraîche 

For the dressing oil:

5 tbsp olive oil 

3 cloves of garlic, finely sliced

½ tsp cumin seeds

¼ cumin powder


1. Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat, then add the nigella seeds and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. 

2. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute, until fragrant, then add the chopped tomatoes, butter/lima beans, stock cubes, ground turmeric, sugar and 300ml  of boiling water and stir to combine. 

3. Bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and leave to cook for 10-12 minutes, until slightly thickened.

4. Remove the pan from the heat and use a stick/immersion blender to blend until smooth. 

5. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning as required. Meanwhile make the dressing oil by heating the oil in a separate pan and frying the cumin seeds until dark brown. 

6. Add the sliced garlic to the oil and cook until golden. Add the cumin powder and stir together. 

7. Spoon the soup into serving bowls, top with the dressing oil and creme fraiche with with crusty bread or cheese twists alongside for dipping

Spiced Cheese Twists

Makes 16


Plain flour, for dusting

500g ready rolled puff pastry 

1 egg, beaten

½ tsp of caraway seeds

½ tsp of chilli flakes

75g Gruyère, grated


1. Preheat the oven to 220°C. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the puff pastry into a rectangle 30x60cm.

2. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg and scatter over the spices and cheese evenly. 

3. Cut the rectangle into 16x2cm-wide strips, then twist the strips and place on 2 baking sheets. 

4. Bake in the oven for 10-12minutes until the straws are puffy and golden. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool slightly before serving warm.

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