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Nourish: Simple Soups

 Image by Emily Degroulard Photos
Image by Emily Degroulard Photos

Oh baby has autumn hit us hard or what?! Transitions between the seasons are my absolute favourite in Paris. The beginning of Autumn is so special here before the seemingly endless grey winter sets in. Over here, candles are lit, there’s an apple crumble a week being devoured and we are embracing the season change hard.

To celebrate this cosy autumn feeling I thought I’d share with you my two absolute favourite autumn soups. W’e’ve been making them lately for Nourish Paris clients to some rave reviews and the absolute simplicity of them means that they’re loved by adults and kids alike!

Butternut Squash & Coral Lentil Soup

  • 1 large butternut squash

  • 1 medium potato

  • 1/2 an onion

  • 1 tbsp curry powder

  • 1.5L chicken or veggie stock

  • 2 tbsp coral lentils

  • 100ml coconut milk

This is the absolute easiest soup to make as you just put all the ingredients except the coconut milk into a large casserole, cook for an hour to an hour and a half, add the coconut milk and blend! It has the most delicious creamy texture and gorgeous orange colour. Our boys like to slurp it with straws & we sometimes chuck some crunchy curry croutons on top.

Parsnip, White Bean and Sage Soup

  • 3 large parsnips

  • 1 medium potato

  • 1.5L chicken or veggie stock

  • 400g can of white beans

  • Five to ten sage leaves (depending on how strong you like it!)

Again, we like soups that are just combine, cook and blend and this one is no exception. Cook the parsnips and potatoes in the stock until soft, add the white beans and sage leaves and blend!

Autumn and winter tend to be the busy seasons in our home what with school, holidays, lots of work, gearing up for the Christmas season and just normal family life. I try to keep our meals as simple and easy as possible to make. The slow cooker comes out of the cupboard to its permanent winter place on the kitchen counter.

What are you cooking this autumn?

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Mother: Sleep

When people speak to families with young babies “How do they sleep?” is never far from being asked. Sleep is such a focus in the early years, mostly around not getting enough.

Right now we are on a sleep journey. I am not currently getting a lot of sleep; I’m actually writing this from my bed where I just enjoyed my Monday lie-in (until 8.30!). But yes, not a lot of sleep happening for me right now. I won’t lie, I’ve been struggling a little – I’m not someone who needs a massive amount of sleep but at the moment we’re waking probably around every forty five minutes to an hour through the night.

This is new territory for me. Arthur slept through the night from around six months old. He napped like a champion practically to the minute every single day. What an amazing parent I was! I did everything right, I had the perfect baby! Turns out, he’s just like his dad and could sleep through nuclear apocalypse. Fred is not that child. I’m trying to lean in to it, take every day as it comes and just do what’s necessary to get through. Right now this is what it looks like:

  • Co-sleeping when we need to. Fred goes into his bed in his and Arthur’s room at 19h. It’s taken WEEKS to get him to do that. Before he would just wake up the moment we put him down. Now he will sleep in there from around 19h to 22h-midnight. After that he generally won’t go back down in his own bed so we co-sleep until the morning (this is the part where he wakes up every hour.)

  • Going to bed early. I go to bed between 21-22h every night. It’s a sad, old lady thing to do but it basically ensures that I get SOME sleep.

  • Embracing this season. It won’t be like this forever – I’m choosing to believe that, to lean into it, to take care of myself and my family within this rather than bending it to my will. And there are a myriad of reasons why I won’t try to bend this sleep situation to my will, not yet anyway. I’m trusting that Fred’s doing what he needs to do for now and that he’ll sleep when he’s ready.

Honestly, as someone who loves rhythm, routine and predictability, it’s taking a lot for me to let go of control on this one. I’d love to wave a wand and have two boys sleeping happily in their beds in their bedroom. I’d love to have a clear step by step solution to apply to this but nothing is making itself apparent right now.

We’re doing ok. We’re powering through. We’re accepting help. We’re being kind to ourselves. And that’s all any of us can really do!

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Nourish Paris

It’s been a little quiet on Tout Simple of late. I have effectively taken a much needed two month holiday but September has crept up on us and here we are again at la rentrée. Tout Simple is officially one year old and to mark this occasion, I’m here to tell you about how it’s changing!

For over a year now I’ve been working on my business Nourish Paris. In the quiet, still moments in between naps, after bed times, stolen moments from life as a mum; Nourish Paris has grown from the tiniest seed of an idea to something that I have taken on full time. I never thought I would be someone who ran her own business, let alone this business, and yet here it is – all mine and I’d like to take a moment to tell you about it.

Nourish Paris home cooks and delivers Real Family Food in Paris 75 (and close suburbs for now.) with a focus on food for post-partum mothers.

There was a time that a new mother would be cared for by her family and community for the first three months of her child’s life. With the rise of people leaving their home communities to come and live and work in big cities, this tradition is massively on the decline. People live away from their families and their villages and mothers are finding themselves increasingly isolated and alone in a time where they should be surrounded by support. Nourish Paris aims to support new parents in a time when their lives are being turned upside down by their new arrival, not just through the practicalities of a home cooked meal, but also through thoughtful, supportive nutrition for breastfeeding, energy and good sleep. 

We believe that families have a pressure on them now that has not been felt in previous generations. Most of the families we know have two parents who work full time, have children in full time childcare and yet have less money and less time available to them than previous generations. The cost of living has gone up, not just financially, but on our time as well. We have less time to spend in the kitchen and however much we might like to be making every meal from scratch for our families – it’s just not the reality of modern family life. Nourish Paris believes that families run on their stomachs and our veggie packed, balanced family meals help to ease the chaos of dinner time.

Basically we have a heart for families and what keeps them running. We want to support the support bases, fuel the fuel tanks and keep your family running at its absolute best. We believe that meal times are a perfect place to start and can’t wait to get serving you!