Archive for ‘Soup’

October 18, 2011

Black Bean Pumpkin Soup

This one is adapted only a little bit from Smitten Kitchen’s recipe.  And let us say, this is more worth it than you can imagine.  Do it. Roast the pumpkin.  Enjoy the soup.

First though, roast and peel the pumpkin.  We did this in the morning so that it was all set to go for the soup that night.

1. Half your pumpkin

2. Clean the seeds and strings from inside the pumpkin.  You can save these to roast and eat as a snack.  Put a little bit of water into a baking pan, and set both halves of pumpkin cut-side down in the pan.

3. Roast at 375 for about 1 hour and 15 minutes.  Ours was probably a 5 lb pumpkin.  For larger or smaller ones the time will differ.  The pumpkin is done when you can easily slide a fork through the skin.    The pumpkin will have a darkened, shriveled look to the skin, but fear not.

4. When it has cooled to be safe to touch, simply peel back that skin with your hands.  It comes off quite easily and can be fairly satisfying to peel.  Then you have your peeled, bright yellow pumpkin all ready to puree.

Black Bean Pumpkin Soup

2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1 1/4 cups chopped onion
1/2 cup minced shallot
4 garlic cloves minced
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4  butter
4 cups beef broth
2 1/4 cups pureed roasted pumpkin
1/2 cup white wine

Fresh cilantro for garnish

In a food processor coarsely puree beans and tomatoes.

In a 6-quart heavy kettle cook onion, shallot, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper in butter over moderate heat, stirring, until onion is softened and beginning to brown. Stir in bean puree. Stir in broth, pumpkin, and wine until combined and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 35 minutes, or until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Garnish with fresh cilantro.

Advertisements
September 11, 2011

Amazing Roasted Eggplant Soup

This completely life-changing roasted eggplant soup is adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s recipe, although we made a few notable changes.

1 mid-small eggplant
3 mid sized tomatoes
1/4 a jalapeno pepper, seeds removed
1 large onion
8 cloves of garlic
Parsley
4 cups veggie broth (2 cans)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup whole milk
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Parmesan cheese to top

1.  Lightly oil a baking pan and preheat the oven to 425

2.  Cut the eggplant, tomato, and onion into 1/2 inch thick slices and spread out on the baking pan.  Peel the garlic and lay the cloves, uncut on the pan.  Also add your slice of jalapeno pepper – but make sure you keep track of where you put it.

3. Roast for 20 minutes, then remove the garlic.  Put the rest back in the oven, turn the heat down to 400 and roast another 15-20 minutes.

4.  Remove the pan and put the onion, garlic, eggplant, and tomatoes in a soup pot.  Remove the jalapeno completely – just the oil from baking it will be plenty hot.

5.  Add the veggie stock to the pot and bring to a boil.  Once it’s boiling, turn down the heat a little and cook until the veggies are all tender.  About 10-15 minutes.

6.  Blend the whole soup in a food processor until completely smooth, then return to a low heat.  Add the cream, milk, and a little less then 1/4 cup grated parmesan.  Cook, stirring often, for 5-10 minutes.  Turn off the heat, sprinkle with fresh parsley, and eat with bread (and joy).

A note about pictures: because this soup ends up a cooked-eggplanty brown color and is blended to be largely textureless, it is not super photogenic.  Use your imagination and believe that it is worth the time and effort.  Really.

April 5, 2011

Potato Dill Soup: A Photo Memoir

Chop 1 shallot.

 

Finely chop 5-6 small carrots. Ours are mostly yellow carrots-hence the color.

Cut one head of garlic into medium chunks.

Cook the shallot, carrots, and garlic in three tablespoons of butter until the shallots start to soften.

Meanwhile, chop 5-6 medium potatoes into small chunks.

Once the shallots are starting to soften, add the potatoes and stir until everything is coated in butter. Cook for 4-5 minutes.

Add 6 cups of veggie stock and a healthy smattering of dried parsley and thyme. Cook until the potatoes are soft.

 

Add 1 cup milk

 

and about three tablespoons fresh dill. We froze fresh dill last fall and it has been a life-saver-just wash, dry, and chop it, then pop the dill in a freezer bag and you are good to go.

 

Now you add the dumplings. We'll post this recipe later, but here's what you do now: make the dumpling/biscuits into balls about an inch in diameter and drop them into the soup so that none are touching. Sprinkle a little more dill on top.

 

Cover your soup pot and put the whole thing in the oven. Bake at 425 for 15-20 minutes.

 

You have awesome, delicious, potato dill soup with yummy dumplings. Eat with or without cheese.

March 14, 2011

Winter Soup

Here’s a yummy and filling soup.  It’s a good recipe for this time of year: it uses most any veggie you can get locally, and it has plenty of room for variation.  It’s so nice, after all the work of the summer, to have kale in the soup.  It’s a tasty reminder of why freezing food in the summer is worth.  While spring may be only a week away, it could be May or later before we get much more variety in our veggies and the garlic supply is dwindling.

But, all of that said, I feel optimistic for the next few months.  In the last two weeks we’ve really begun to feel a change.  Certainly the days are noticeably longer now than they were a month ago, and the temperatures are rising to the mid-twenties and thirties, even giving us occasional days in the forties and fifties. But most of all there is the feeling of spring returning.  The hillsides are turning red with buds on trees and there are sap lines out for maple syrup.  Everything feels a little lighter, a little easier than it did in the darkest part of the winter.

And our supply of veggies remains good.  Despite growing some legs, the potatoes are holding up well.  We’ve started buying diced tomatoes but we haven’t yet broken down and bought non-local fresh produce.  It feels good to remember what food belongs to which season.  It marks the calendar, fills out the details of these days.  How good that will feel when the garlic finally runs out is up for debate however.  In the meantime, we still have frozen pesto and a few jars of homemade tomato sauce, as well as corn, peppers, kale, broccoli, and parsley in the freezer.

Now, enough rambling.  A recipe for an easy root-veggie soup:

1 sweet potato

3 leeks

1 onion

1 head of garlic, roughly chopped

4 potatoes

six small carrots

1 bunch of kale (we used frozen kale)

mixed veggie stock

dried parsley and basil

  1. Chop all of the veggies and put everything except the garlic and the kale in a pot with a tablespoon of butter.  Cook lightly for ten-fifteen minutes then add six-eight cups of liquid.
  2. Simmer until the potatoes begin to soften, then add the roughly chopped garlic.
  3. Season with dried parsley and basil.
  4. Finally, about ten minute before serving, add the frozen kale and mix it in.
  5. Eat!  Very good with cheddar slivers on top.

March 10, 2011

Carrot Soup

Yummy carrot and coconut soup from our Scottish CSA cookbook, The Boxing Clever Cookbook by Jacqui Jones & Joan Wilmot.  This is the recipe doubled so we would have some leftovers.

About 2 cups of grated carrots

three chopped onions

some olive oil

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup red lentils

about 2 pints water or stock

2 tablespoons coconut milk

 

  1. Cook the carrots, tomato paste, olive oil, and onions for a few minutes, then add the liquid and lentils.
  2. Cook until the lentils are soft.
  3. Add coconut and simmer for several minutes.
  4. Season with salt and ground pepper.
  5. Eat!

 

Tags:
February 15, 2011

Potato-Leek Soup

5 leeks, cut into thing rounds most of the way up until the green part becomes too tough

8 smallish potatoes, cut into small pieces (we used 1 blue potato, 2 red potatoes, 1 fingerling potato, and 4 German Butterball potatoes)

A small head of garlic, minced

2 small onions, chopped fairly small

1  carrot, grated

Generous pinch of tarragon

1 teaspoon garlic powder,

Just under a teaspoon dry mustard

salt & pepper

Frozen parsley

 

  1. Put all the vegetables in a soup pot with a light coating of oil and about an inch of broth and cook until the onions start to soften.  Add salt and pepper.
  2. Add 6 cups of stock (we used partly bouillon and partly our own frozen stock-thanks to Mary at Harvest Kitchen for the idea of saving all of our cooking scraps like potato skins and carrot tops to make stock)
  3. Cook until the potatoes are soft, then season with tarragon, garlic powder, and dry mustard.
  4. Finally, turn off the heat, stir in a handful of parsley (ours we frozen raw this fall, but fresh would work as well) and eat with cheese, bread, or whatever you like on your soup.
  5. Delicious with a dollop of horseradish mustard.

 

Tags: ,
February 8, 2011

Egg Drop Soup

It is 8 degrees out and snowing.  So we are, as usual, having soup.  This one is an expansion on simple egg drop soup.   You can find the original recipe in Mark Bittman’s Kitchen Express.

For this bitter cold February evening we chopped up one leek and grated up one carrot.

Picture of 3 leeks and a chef's knife on a bamboo cutting board

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We boiled five cups of stock then added the leek and carrot.  For seasoning we added a dash of soy sauce and grated a little dried ginger.

Soup in pot: leeks cut into disks with shredded carrot, and wooden spoon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, while stirring the soup quickly we poured in the beaten egg, stirring a lot, and cooked for a few minutes.

Spinning soup!  There's a bowl tipped over the far edge, pouring in the beaten eggs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To go alongside this are rice noodles (soak for half an hour before cooking, then boil for two minutes or until just slightly opaque and separate easily).

Bowl with spoon and soup and rice noodles

February 2, 2011

Garlic and Parsley Soup, French Bread, and Upstate New York Wisdom

Here in the hinterlands, we got another good foot of snow last night, and it’s begun blowing and flurrying again tonight. We’re cozying up and dosing ourselves with a heady combination of hot toddies, garlic and parsley soup with noodles, and a particularly inspired homemade crusty French bread. Followed by a rousing game of scrabble and some cheerful bluegrass—and okay, for one of our roommates (hint: the one who lives in the actual closet) “bluegrass music” also means some freakin’ Dixie Chicks. If this sounds like a recipe for perfect bliss, friend, it is. We’ve been inspired by the towering success of the bread to begin a weekly series of blog posts, each attempting a different bread from Mark Bittman’s How To Cook Everything Vegetarian. Below you’ll find the recipe for the spicy, light soup, and some helpful hot toddy hints. Take one into the hot shower with you (it is not weird quoth the closet-dweller) after the cold, snowy walk to the liquor store and you’ll feel you’ve died and gone to heaven.

And now, for an anecdote as the cherry on this Wednesday sundae: We are three fairly liberal gals living in a very conservative enclave. Today this was all turned on its head with a choice comment made by our salt of the earth neighbor, a dispenser of advice on dog-walking, sprained-ankle-healing, snow-shoveling, and truck-moving who is naturally named Bob. One of our gang happened to be tramping into town past Bob’s house, where he was indeed heartily shoveling snow, with a troupe of snow-day-addled and rosy-cheeked children. Bob took one look at our harried compatriot wrangling a small herd of children through the snowdrifts and cheerfully exclaimed, “You need me to give ya the number for Planned Parenthood?” And thus, an ever-so-slightly scandalous joke about birth control made our night. We’ll take what we can get!

Hot Toddy
The classic recipe is a tipple of whiskey (Irish, American (i.e. bourbon) or Scottish (i.e. scotch) a slice of lemon, and the rest of the glass filled with just boiled water. Variations include throwing some tea into the mix, and milk and sugar if the spirit moves you, though dairy and alcohol might just throw you for a nasty loop in quantity.

Parsley and Garlic Soup


1. Cut at least two heads of large garlic.
2. Cook over very low heat with olive oil and black pepper. Stir frequently
3. Add eight cups of water or broth. Bring to a boil.
4. If using water, add at least two vegetable bouillon cubes.
5. Add a teaspoon each of dried basil, oregano, garlic powder, and salt.
6. Once the bouillon has dissolved turn the heat down a bit.
7. If you want, add a few handfuls of uncooked pasta. It will cook in the soup.
8. When the pasta is done, turn off the heat and add at least half a bunch of parsley. We used frozen parsley from this fall, but fresh would work just as well.
Serve with delicious bread and parmesan if you want.

 

January 31, 2011

Blue Potato Soup

It’s getting to that time of year: our garlic is half rotted, the potatoes are growing legs, there’s only one onion left in the fridge (where we have learned onions last the longest). So, as we slog through the last week before our next market, we’re using up the last of January’s vegetables.

Tonight we had a potato soup with ditalini pasta (the very small round tubes), mushrooms, frozen kale and fresh croutons. We used a variety of blue potatoes that turn a range of soft purples after cooked-and held their shape better than white or yellow potatoes like Fingerlings, German Butterballs, or Yukon golds. In the High Mowing seed catalog the blue potato that keeps its color is called “All Blue.”

Here’s the recipe:

Peel and chop five mid-sized blue potatoes.
Chop two shallots, three large cloves of garlic, and two mushrooms.
Lightly sauté the vegetables in a tablespoon of butter at the bottom of the soup pot.
Add eight cups of water and a few pinches of tarragon.
Bring to a boil and then turn down, add one cube of vegetarian bouillon.
Seasons with black pepper, rosemary, tarragon, and salt.

Meanwhile, make up the pasta. When the pasta is ready and the potatoes have become soft, turn off the heat and throw in as much kale (fresh or frozen) as you would like. Stir until soft and then serve with croutons (and parmesan cheese, if that’s something you like).

To make the croutons we chopped up the bits of stale bread. Heat olive oil, black pepper, salt, and a hint of garlic powder, in a shallow pan. When you can just feel the warmth when you hold your hand over the pan, add the bread and stir constantly until crispy.

This soup also underscores the value of preparation before a winter of seasonal eating. The bags of kale in our freezer help us extend the stored veggies we rely on (e.g. potatoes, onions, garlic). If you can afford the expense and the time, buy a bit extra at the farmers’ market next summer and freeze it right away. Fresh herbs like parsley and dill (although not basil, which turns black) are simple – just chop coarsely and put into freezer bags. Peppers are just as easy. Blanch kale for 3 minutes before freezing to keep the color and flavor intact. Sweet corn also keeps its flavor well, although you have to boil it then cut the kernels off the cob before freezing it. These are just a few of our favorites. Putting Food By is an excellent resource if you’d like to learn more about stocking up before next winter.

The soup was certainly no midsummer fresh tomato and eggplant delight. Sure, I would love to eat tomatoes year round, would love it if every week I had two bunches of fresh parsley, but this is about eating what we have this time of year. And at this time of year, people should be eating potatoes. Here’s what I come back to: this soup is good enough. It was filling, yummy, and made with what we have.