Hiver, masculine noun (un hiver, l’hiver, des hivers) = winter (pronounced eee-vaire, ahneee-vaire, leee-vaire, daisy-vaire, no particular stress, no s heard in the plural).
The seasons: hiver=winter, printemps=spring, été=summer, automne=autumn
Hivernage = overwintering
Adjective hivernal = wintery: un temps hivernal = wintery weather (m); une nuit hivernale = a wintery night (f); des jours hivernaux = wintery days (m.pl.); des étoiles hivernales = wintery stars (f.pl.). All adjectives have masculine singular and plural, and feminine singular and plural forms to go with the noun they are describing, depending upon whether that noun is itself masculine or feminine, singular or plural. (End of grammar lesson for today.)
On to cooking. My recipe is for potage aux légumes d’hiver = winter vegetable soup, a hearty warming soup to come back to after working or walking in the cold.
For 4 people you will need:
- a couple of good sized leeks
- 200gr carrots
- 200gr potato
- a 1″ (2.5cm) piece of ginger
- 1 large clove garlic
- A handful of fresh parsley
- 30gr butter
- 2 stock cubes and 1 1/2 litres of water (or 1 1/2 litres of home made chicken stock)
- some fresh cream
- Wash and slice the leeks.
- Melt the butter in a large saucepan, add the leeks and sweat (cook very gently), stirring occasionally, until transparent. They should not colour.
3. Peel and slice the carrots and potatoes. Add to the pan and stir. Cook gently for 3 or 4 minutes.
4. Peel and chop the ginger, peel the garlic. Add these to the vegetables.
5. Pour in the chicken stock or add the cubes and water, stir and turn the flame up high to bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 minutes.
6. Stir in some fresh cream, the amount depends on you really. I put about 10cl (a 20th of a pint). Blend with a soup blender, but not for too long so that the potato does not go goopy.
This is a simple hearty soup that needs no garnishes other than fresh crusty bread. Make lots, it will keep in the fridge for a couple of days, and freezes well.