Posts filed under 'Soups'
Happy New Year Flavoristas! Barr and I hope that you enjoyed delicous and fabulous holidays.
After an unseasonably warm winter so far, the cold temperatures have finally settled in, now we would like some snow please. (Seriously, my snowboarding and skiiing children need some snow!) Cold temperatures call for hot, hearty stews.
Lollie was gracious enough to jokingly pose for this kale coming out of your ears pose. Believe it or not, my neighbors still have garden kale available. I am competing with a flock of seven wild trukey who like to nibble on my neighbor's kale but I was able to get enough to make this satisifying stew.
And when you add kale to potatoes and sausage, finicky, non-kale eaters (aka Marco) don't notice.
Sausage, Potato and Kale Stew
Did you know that kale is even more delicious after the first frost? The cooler temperatures of fall tenderize the kale leaves so it’s time to move from kale salad to kale stew. This hearty stew is a meal by itself but feel free to gild the lily with a loaf of crusty bread and nice bottle of red wine.
2 Tbsp. butter
12 oz. white mushrooms, quartered
1 lb. sweet or hot sausage, meat pushed out of the links or cut into thin slices
1 onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp celery seed
1/2 tsp. sweet or smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 (15.5 oz) can cannellini beans, not drained
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
4 cups chicken broth
4 cups finely chopped kale
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
Add the butter to a heavy pot over medium heat. When melted, add the mushrooms. Cook and stir until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to a bowl. Set aside.
Add sausage to the pot; cook and stir until sausage is almost cooked through. Add the onion, carrot, garlic, salt, celery seed, paprika and black pepper. Cook and stir until onion is fragrant and meat is completely cooked through, about 5 minutes.
Add the bay leaf, beans, potatoes and broth to the pot along with the cooked mushrooms. Bring to a simmer and stir in the kale. Cover and cook until potatoes, carrots and kale are tender, about 20 minutes.
If desired, garnish each bowl with a generous Tbsp. of Parmesan. If there are any leftovers, this stew freezes and reheats nicely.
Cook’s Note: While I love mushrooms, I understand that not everyone shares my affection. If you prefer, omit the mushrooms and simply begin the recipe with step 2.
January 3rd, 2012
'Tis the season for squash and soup! This is the kind of soup that I love to order at restaurants, smooth and delicious, highlightling the crops of the season.
The good news is that it is easy enough to make at home; save your restaurant bucks for the Christmas shopping budget
Roasting squash and sweet potatoes take little effort and it can be done ahead of time to save time on soup day. I prefer roasting to steaming or boiling because it concentrates and deepens the flavor of the vegetables.
Oven-Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
This vegetarian soup pairs savory winter squash and sweet apples to create a creamy soup that is sure to please everyone at the table. This fall classic is perfect on its own or served alongside a grilled cheese sandwich.
1 medium butternut squash
1 sweet potato, about 1 lb.
2 Tbsp. butter or olive oil
1 medium onion finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 large apple, peeled and chopped
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. paprika
pinch of cayenne
5 cups vegetable broth, divided
2 Tbsp. honey, agave or brown sugar
2 Tbsp. molasses
2 tsp. cider vinegar or 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup heavy cream (optional)
finely chopped fresh cilantro or fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut squash in half lengthwise with a strong knife and a strong arm. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and discard. Prick the sweet potato with a fork. Place the sweet potato and squash, skin side up, onto a baking sheet.
Roast for 1 hour or until very tender, depending on the size of the squash, it make take 15-20 minutes more. When cool enough to touch, scoop cooked squash out of the skin and transfer to a food processor.
Slice the sweet potato lengthwise and scoop the sweet potato away from the skin. Add it to the food processor with 1 cup of broth and puree until very smooth. This step can be done one day ahead and puree can be refrigerated until needed to prepare the soup.
While the squash roasts, you can prepare the soup base. Add the butter to large pot over medium heat. When melted, add the next 11 ingredients to the pot (onion through cayenne).
Cook and stir until onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add 1 cup of broth to the vegetables and stir well. Cover and simmer until carrots and celery are tender, about 10 minutes.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the vegetables to a food processor. Add 1 cup of broth to the processor and puree until smooth. Add it back to the pot along with the pureed squash and whisk until smooth. Alternatively, process the soup with a hand held blender.
Stir in the remaining 3 cups of broth, honey, molasses and cider vinegar. Bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, stir in the cream, if using, and cook for 10 minutes uncovered. Garnish each bowl with a sprinkling of cilantro or parsley.
November 16th, 2011
Spring's fickle weather is upon us. Somedays summer seems just a few days away and then….it snows. Ah well. Still time to enjoy a few one bowl dinner stoups. This one was inspired by the Bread Works here in Boulder. Top it with a 1 teaspoon of this lovely harissa from Les Moulins Mahjoub.
It is one of the best harrissas I've had and is very unique as far as most harissas go. Instead of being a paste, it's actually more flaky, as seen in the picture above. I use this harissa like I would Sirachca as a garnish on all different types of dishes for an added element of heat.
Moroccan Chicken and Couscous Soup
Serves 5 to 6
1 medium sweet potato
1 small zuchini, cut into large 2-inch chunks (optional)
1 medium yellow or white onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
1 tsp. turmeric
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. cumin seed, toasted then ground (or you can use regular ground cumin)
1 (12-ounce) can crushed tomatoes (or diced, whatever you happen to have in your cupboard)
6 chicken thighs or breasts
salt and pepper
6 cups homemade chicken broth
1/2 to 1 Cup Israeli or Jordanian Couscous (depending on how thick you like your soup)
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Peel and cut the sweet potato in large 2-inch chunks. Toss with a little olive oil, salt and pepper and spread out over a cookie sheet. Place in the oven and roast until the potatoes are just beginning to brown and get soft when touched with the end of a knife. Do the same thing with the zucchini, if using.
Meanwhile, heat a large casserole over medium heat and cover the bottom with nice thin layer of olive oil. Add the diced onion and cook until translucent. Add the carrots and stir to incorporate and coat all the vegeables with the oil. Season with the spices and stir well. Add the tomatoes, cover and let cook for a few minutes.
Bring the broth to a boil in another pot and cook the couscous, about 8 minutes.
Once the vegetables are done roasting, add them to the casserole on the stove and pour in the broth and couscous. Lower heat and allow to simmer. You might want to add more liquid depending if you want more of a soup or a stew.
Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. You can roast the chicken or grill it. Once it is cooked, cut it into large chunks on the diagonal. Adjust seasonings on the stoup and ladle into large bowls. Top with the cooked chicken pieces, a heaping teaspoon of harrissa and enjoy. Optional garnishes include chopped fresh cilantro and crumbed feta cheese.
April 14th, 2011
Traditionally made with pork and chicken, posole made with the right ingredients can also be delicious vegetarian. In Mexico, this dish is consumed like menudo, to help quell the effects of a hangover. I just love the buttery, crunchy texture of hominy.
Two "secret" ingredients for me were my vegetable stock (see the post on Soup Swap for the recipe)and the new (but hard to find) fire roasted tomato with chipotles from Muir Glenn. I’ve been a huge fan of the fire roasted with green chilies for a while, and those are in this recipe too. The fire roasting flavor of the tomatoes helps to add the needed depth to this hearty "stoup". A few classic Mexican cooking techniques are also essential.
¼ cup olive oil
2 Ancho chilies, top stem removed
2 large onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped finely
2 Tbsp. whole coriander seed, crushed
1 Tbsp. whole cumin seed crushed
4 cans Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomatoes with Green Chilies
Or 2 of Fire Roasted Tomatoes with Chipotle Chilies and 2 with Green Chilies, your choice
4 cans of hominy (2 yellow and 2 white), rinsed and drained
4 Quarts homemade vegetable stock (I added an ancho chilie and guillio chilie to this batch), hot
Heat a large heavy bottomed pan on the medium heat. Add the olive oil, the whole ancho chilies, onions and garlic. Add the ground spices and stir until they are fragrant. Allow to cook for 10 minutes. Now add the hominy and stir well. Add the tomatoes of your choice.
Remove the ancho chili and place in a blender with some of the hot stock, just enough to cover. You can add the garlic to this as well. Puree until smooth. Add the hot vegetable stock to the posole and then stir in the chili puree.
Allow to cook for 30 minutes over low heat stir every so often. You may now season with salt and pepper to your heart’s content. If you want to make it thicker and have a more potent masa punch, place whole corn tortilla in with the posole and let it soften for 5 minutes. Now remove it with some of the broth and puree it with your immersion blender as you did for the chilies. Add back into the posole and stir well.
Serve garnished with freshly chopped avocados, cilantro, fresh lime and slices of radish.
February 28th, 2011
This year, I participated in a fledgling soup swap here in Boulder, CO. Our host, Julie, has a friend in New York who has been participating in National Soup Swap for a while and had 197 quarts of soup at her house during this year’s swap. That’s a lot of soup!
While we didn’t have quite that much our choices were wonderful and they were all unique. There was Harira (a personal favorite, recipe forthcoming), Greek Chicken Soup with Orzo and Lemon, Spanish Bean, Carrot Ginger (made creamy with tofu), Boulder’s famous Kitchen Cafe’s Tomato Soup, Adirondack Smoked Bacon, Potato and Cheddar, Dahl, Flanken, White Bean Turkey Chili (which was featured on Epicurious) - just to mention a few…
The best thing is you make 6 quarts of one soup, which quite frankly you never want to see again, and come home with a quart of 6 different soups! Brillant! Much to my surprise there were many soups that featured meat (this is Boulder after all).
As per my modus operendi, I couldn’t make a choice, made 3 soups but had to settle on one and decided to go with a vegan mushroom barley which was actually teeming with barley and mushroom flavor. It came out more as a stoup (soup/stew) which would make it suitable for Meatless Monday. Can’t wait for next year!
Teeming Vegan Mushroom Barley
Makes 6 Quarts
1 1/2 cups pearl barley, soaked overnight in 4 cups of water
For caramelized onions – You can try Kimberly’s method for the onions, but dice the onions. Otherwise, dice 6 medium to large onions. Heat a large enamled coated cast iron pot (like Le Creuset) and pour in enough oil to coat the bottom well. Once the oil is warm, add the onions, give a good stir then cover and cook for 40 minutes. Check on them periodically and stir them around. Now’s a good time to start the vegetable stock. Both of these can be done a day ahead.
Vegetable Stock – this recipe is based on Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (one of the best vegetarian cookbooks out there). One surprise ingredient is nutritional yeast which adds a wonderful element of umami. I also added a large piece of Kombu seaweed, but this is optional. One quick note: while I am sure the desire to use stock in a box is strong, I really encourage you all to make fresh vegetable stock. It just tastes better.
4 carrots, roughly chopped
4 celery stalks, roughly chopped
2 onions, with skin chopped in quarters
8 cloves of garlic
4 thyme sprigs or 1 tsp. dried leaf
1 bay leaf, Turkish preferred
1 Tbsp. black peppercorns
4 tsp. sea salt or kosher salt
2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
1 large piece of kombu
4 qts. water
Heat some oil in a large pot. Add the carrots, onion and celery to get them brown. You can also do this step in the oven on a cookie sheet at about 425 degrees until they just turn brown.
Add the aromatics, yeast, kombu and then the water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer, uncovered for 30 minutes. Strain and continue.
Teeming Mushroom Barley Soup -continued
caramelized onions (instructions above)
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 oz. dried porcini mushrooms, re-hydrated and chopped, reserve the water
1 Tbsp. freshly chopped marjoram (or rosemary, your choice)
2 cups diced celery
2 cups diced celery root
4 large carrots, diced
1/2 cup olive oil (for the mushrooms)
2 pints cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 cup dry or sweet vermouth, again your choice
5 cloves garlic, chopped very fine
Freshly grated Pecorino cheese for garmish
Once the onions are all soft, add the tomato paste and really work it into the onions. Add the marjoram and stir again. Now add the celery, celery root and carrots. Stir well. Add the re-hydrated porcini and the water.
In another pan, heat the olive oil and cook the mushrooms, in batches if necessary. Add the vermouth and allow it to cook off. Once the mushrooms are cooked, add them to the pot. Now add the drained barley and strained stock. Bring to a boil, lower heat and cook for 25 minutes. Add the garlic and adjust the seasonings. If the barley absorbs too much liquid, add a bit more to your liking. My soup was fairly thick.
For serving, place into large bowls and be generous with the grated pecorino. Freeze the rest and give it away!
January 31st, 2011
Saturday, January 22 is National Soup Swap Day. What? You didn’t know?
It’s actually a grand idea. Make 6 quarts of your favorite soup and freeze it in clearly labeled, 1-quart size containers. Make a plan for a soup swap with six friends and take home 6 different soups!
Here are a few of our soups you can use to organize a soup swap in your neighborhood.
Roasted Red Pepper and Potato Soup
Vegetable Barley Soup
Slow Cooker French Onion Soup
Clam and Kale Soup
Deborah Madison’s Lentil Minestrone – Sorry no picture!
Coconut Red Lentil Soup
Revithia (Greek chickpea soup)
January 10th, 2011