Tag Archives: Soup

Curried Cauliflower & Potato Soup

Roasting the cauliflower first adds depth. Some tomato and coconut milk give the broth a rich, silky texture.
Makes about 3 quarts
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2 tsp coriander

2 tsp cumin

11/2 tsp cinnamon

11/4 tsp turmeric

pinch cayenne pepper

1 small head cauliflower

2 TBL olive oil

1 large onion

1-2 carrots (for 1 cup diced)

3 large cloves garlic

11/2 tsp grated fresh ginger

1 tsp red chile pepper flakes

1 (14-16 ounce) can whole tomatoes, or no-salt tomato sauce

4 cups vegetable broth

2-4 russet potatoes (3 cups diced)

2-4 sweet potatoes (3 cups diced)

1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk

1 large lime

1 bunch cilantro

Preheat oven to 450ºF.

In a small bowl, combine

  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 11/2 cinnamon
  • 11/4 tsp turmeric
  • 11/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp pepper
  • pinch cayenne pepper

In a large bowl, toss

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets (about 6 cups)
  • 1 TBL olive oil

Sprinkle with 1 TBL of the spice mixture and toss again. Spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast the cauliflower until the edges are browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large pot heat the remaining

  • 1 TBL olive oil

over medium-high heat. Add

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 cup diced carrot

and cook, stirring often, until starting to brown, 3-4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook a few minutes more, stirring often, until the onion is soft. Add

  • 3 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 11/2 tsp grated (or minced) fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp red chile pepper flakes
  • the remaining spice mixture

Cook, stirring, for 1 minute more.

Stir in

  • 1 (14-16 ounce) can whole tomatoes, or no-salt tomato sauce

scraping up any browned bits and breaking up the tomatoes, and simmer for 1 minute. Add

  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups diced peeled russet potatoes (1/2-inch)
  • 3 cups diced peeled sweet potatoes (1/2-inch)
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 2 TBL lime juice

Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook, partially cover and stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 35 to 40 minutes.

Stir in

  • 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk
  • the reserved roasted cauliflower

Return to a simmer to heat through. Serve garnished with cilantro.

Autumn Soup

Indian flavors and fall vegetables make a great combination
6 to 8 servings
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olive oil

large bunch leeks

small pumpkin or butternut squash

2 turnips

1/2 pound potatoes

red pepper flakes

ground cumin

garam masala

fenugreek leaves (dried or fresh)

Saute

  • 4 cups (12 ounces) chopped leeks (white part), cleaned of any sand

in

  • a glug of olive oil

When tender, add

  • 4 cups (18 ounces)  peeled pumpkin (or butternut squash), cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 11/2 cups (8 ounces) turnip, peeled and cut into dize
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) potato, peeled and cut into dice

Add water to cover (4 cups) plus

  • 1 tsp salt
  • red pepper flakes to taste
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 TBL dried fenugreek leaves (or more, if fresh)

Bring to a simmer and cover to cook for 45 minutes. Check to see if vegetables are tender. Puree when done. Adjust seasonings, adding lemon juice if desired.

 

Cold Borscht

The perfect thing for a hot summer night.
A little more than 2 quarts
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2 bunches of beets (about 21/4 pounds including greens)

1 medium onion

1 TBL sugar

sour salt (citric acid), or a lemon

16 oz container of sour cream

Peel and cut into largish dice (3/8– to 1/2-inch on a side)

  • 2 bunches of beets

Measure the volume (about 6 cups in my case) and place in a soup pot. Note: the beets in this batch weighed about 800g after peeling. Add

  • 1 medium onion (150g), minced finely
  • 6 cups water (actually, it should match the volume of the beets)

Bring to a boil and then start a timer for 15 minutes. Check whether the beets are cooked; they should be soft enough to chew but not mushy. If they need a few more minutes, cook a little longer. Turn off the heat and remove any scum that collects at the top of the pot. Add

  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 TBL sugar
  • 1/4 tsp sour salt (citric acid) or 3-4 TBL of lemon juice

Let stand to cool for 30 minutes. Place half the beets and some liquid in the jar of a blender. Run until fully pureed. Return to pot. In the jar of the blender combine

  • 3/4 cup (roughly) sour cream

about a cup of liquid from the soup. Process until smooth and pour back into soup pot. Stir and adjust any seasonings as needed. Chill in refrigerator.

ATTN My mother would make borscht (with a slightly different recipe) and only add the sour cream just before serving. This allowed her to freeze the soup and serve it at a later time. I do it this way because the sour cream blends thoroughly in the blender and it’s already in use when I’m making the soup. I haven’t frozen this, but I can’t imagine any reason it would fail.

My mother would garnish this with diced boiled potatoes, diced cucumber or diced hard-boiled eggs. I didn’t ever develop a taste for any of these additions.

Italian Clam Soup

So delicious and clammy!
Makes four servings
Shopping List

3 dozen littleneck clams

1/4 cup olive oil

3-4 cloves garlic

canned anchovies

1 cup dry white wine

28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes

2 tsp dried oregano

dried basil

fresh parsley

Red pepper flakes

bread, for croutons

Scrub

  • 3 dozen littleneck clams

At some point, make the croutons, at bottom of this recipe. Heat in 2-3 quart soup pot

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Add, keeping heat low enough it does not brown:

  • 2 TBL finely minced garlic

Cook briefly and  add

  • 6 anchovy fillets

Cook until the anchovies break down into a paste.  Add

  • 1 cup white wine

and simmer for a minute. Open

  • 28-ounce can of San Marzano or other plum tomatoes

Chop up tomatoes a bit (you can remove the seeds if you care  to), discard a gross-looking piece of basil that seems to be hidden in every can and add all the tomatoes and liquid to the pot, along with

2 tsp dried oregano

11/2 tsp dried basil

1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

1/2 to 1 tsp hot red pepper flakes

freshly ground pepper, to taste

 

ATTN Do not add salt: the anchovies have enough. Bring the pot to a boil and stir briefly. You may work up until this point and pause the recipe until 5 minutes before you with to eat. If you do so, turn off the heat.

Resume the recipe by bringing the soup to a boil. Add the cleaned clams and cover the pot for 5 minutes (or until all the clams open). Serve the soup, leaving the clams in the shells. Garnish with Garlic Croutons (see next paragraph).

To make the croutons, toast 8 slices of a baguette. When toasted, rub one side with the cut surface of a garlic clove you have cut in half.

Adapted from  More 60-Minute Gourmet by Pierre Franey.

 

Cold Pea Soup

Delicious and refreshing on a hot summer day. And easy to make, too.
4 servings

1 pound frozen peas (3 cups)

3 cups chicken or vegetable stock

1/4 cup sour cream (or more to taste)

Parsley, for garnish

In a saucepan, combine

1 pound frozen peas (3 cups)

3 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook until peas are bright green and tender, 10 minutes or so. Cool for a few minutes. Pour the cooked peas into a blender and carefully blend them until they are pureed. Do this in several batches. Add

Salt and pepper, to taste

Force through a fairly fine strainer, discarding solids. Stir or whisk in

1/4 cup sour cream (or more to taste)

You may substitute heavy cream if you prefer a less tangy flavor. Refrigerate (for up to two days) before serving, cold. Garnish with some

Chopped parsley

Dollop of sour cream, if desired

Adapted from Mark Bittman in The New York Times

Roasted Chicken Stock

Place parts for soup (necks, backs or sometimes you can buy the bones left over from boneless chicken breasts) on an oven-proof tray with sides. Make sure the parts are in a single layer or use additional trays. My most recent batch was about 40 chicken necks – just to give you an idea of how much I used. Roast at 400 F for about 30 to 60 minutes; you want the parts to get browned, like you’re roasting a chicken, so the timing will vary depending on the size of the parts, whether they have skin on them or not, etc. Move the parts around on the tray from time to time so they all get cooked, on all sides. If a lot of liquid accumulates, remove it from the tray to the soup pot so you don’t get steamed chicken parts. While you’re roasting the chicken parts you can also roast a couple of unpeeled onions and carrots on the tray, too.

Place the chicken parts in pot with onions, carrots, celery leaves, herbs (I use bay leaves, thyme and parsley), salt and water just to barely cover. Use some of the water to remove the browned bits of meat and vegetables that have stuck to the roasting tray and add that to the stock: this will boost the flavor, make the stock a lovely brown color and make cleanup much simpler. You can speed this up by putting the tray with a little water on a warm burner and scraping the pan with a metal spatula.

Cook for about an hour at a simmer: check the seasonings. Strain the stock. If there’s a lot of meat on the bones, remove it and use it for chicken salad or to add to a soup.

Turkey Soup

I love gathering up turkey carcasses that family and friends want to throw out at Thanksgiving dinner. Sometimes they are loaded with meat, but even if well trimmed, they yield a delicious soup.

Soak overnight in separate bowls 1 cup barley and 2 cups dried lima beans. I soak them separately.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the carcass(es) on one or more oven-safe trays, along with 2 onions., a few carrots and celery stalks. Be sure the trays have sides as there tends to be some juice attached to the carcasses that will liquefy as it heats. From time to time, turn the bones and vegetables as they brown.

Transfer the bones and vegetables to a stock pot, breaking the rib cage if it doesn’t fit in your stock pot. Add just enough water to cover the bones and vegetables. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Add salt and bay leaves. Let cook for at least an hour. When the stock tastes good, remove the bones and vegetables to a colander. Pour the stock through a fine strainer. Pick the meat from the bones and reserve. You can force the carrots through the sieve to impart their flavor to the stock. Discard the vegetables and bones.

Add the barley and beans to the stock, and bring to a boil. Cook until the beans and barley are nearly done. Add a mixture of diced carrots and parsnip. Cook for 15 minutes and add the reserved meat. Adjust seasoning and serve with egg noodles, dumplings or anything else you like.

Winter Squash Soup

Chop, clean and saute 1 large leek in some olive oil. While it softens, trim 4 cups of winter squash into 1- to 2-inch cubes. Add to pot and add a mixture of water and chicken stock to cover. Add 1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp cayenne and either 1/2 tsp cumin or 1/4 tsp pimenton. Bring to simmer for 35-45 minutes (until squash is soft). If using a pressure cooker, it will need about 10 minutes. Puree in blender and strain. Add a bit of light cream and serve.

NOTE: If saving for later, reheat and then add the cream.

Root Soup

This started out as potato soup originally, and it’s morphed into a much more interesting dish.

Peel and cut up 2-4 potatoes, 4-5 parsley roots, 3 carrots and 2 leeks. place in pot and cover with water. Add 2 tsp salt and bring to a boil; reduce to a strong simmer. Skim any starchy foam that accumulates on the surface. Let simmer for 20-30 minutes. Turn off heat.

In a skillet, melt 3 TBL butter over medium heat. When it starts to foam, add 11/2 to 2 TBL flour. Stir to make a smooth mixture and keep stirring until it’s a nut-brown color, but be sure you don’t let it burn. Add it to the soup, keeping it mind it will splatter. When the mixture is thoroughly combined, bring the soup back to a simmer for another 20-30 minutes.

If you want the soup less chunky, use a potato masher to break some if up. Let cool and reheat the next day; it will be much thicker. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Fennel-Mussel Soup

Wash off and debeard 2 pounds of mussels, discarding any dead ones. While wet, put them in a covered pot and cook on medium-high heat until they have opened; discard any that remain closed. Remove meat from all but 12 of the mussels, reserving the meat and the 12 fully-intact mussels. Strain liquid through a coffee filter to remove any sand and reserve that, too. Do this in advance of making the soup, for up to 2 days.

In a soup pot, saute a chopped onion in a little olive oil. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt, a few grinds of black pepper and some whole fennel seeds. While that’s cooking, trim off the stalks from 2 fennel bulbs, reserving a few of the wispy fronds for a garnish. Dice the fennel bulbs and mince a clove of garlic. Open a 28-ounce can of plum tomatoes; remove seeds, chop tomatoes and reserve liquid.

When the onions are soft (maybe 5-10 minutes), stir in the fennel bulbs, garlic, 2 bay leaves, 1 quart of chicken stock, the tomatoes and tomato juice, the mussels (both the one in and out of their shells) and the mussel liquid, 1/2 cup of clam juice and 3 tablespoons of Pernod. Simmer for 10 minutes and check seasoning.

Serve in bowls, placing 2 or 3 of the mussels (in their shells) on the top. Garnish with fennel fronds. This makes 4 to 6 servings.

Clam Soup

Heat some oil in a large pot. Add 2 TBL finely minced garlic. Cook briefly, add 6 anchovies, mashing them as they cook. Add 1 cup white wine, 4 cups canned tomatoes with paste/pulp, 2 tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp dried basil, 1/2 cup chopped parsley (fresh), 1 tsp dried red pepper flakes. Taste it before you add any salt or pepper… you probably won’t need either.

Add 3 dozen scrubbed and dried little neck clams. Cook until the clams open, about 5 minutes. Serve with large garlic croutons (slice bread, brush with olive oil, toast until golden brown and rub with cut garlic clove).

Yellow Tomato Soup

Puree 1 lb peeled, seeded yellow tomatoes with 1 TBL olive oil. (I was short on yellow so I added one red one: the soup is still a rich yellow.) This will make about 3 cups of juice. Add 3/4 cup chicken stock. Strain through a coarse strainer to capture any seeds. To the puree add 2 tsp sherry vinegar and 3-4 TBL heavy cream. Chill.

Cold Borscht (for 40)

The perfect thing for a hot summer night. Normal people will probably want to cut this in half or freeze some of: it freezes really well.

Peel and dice 31/2 lbs of beets (to make 8 cups). Bring to simmer in pot with 8 cups water, 1/2 onion finely grated, 2-3 cloves garlic run through a garlic press and salt. When beets are cooked — not too soft — remove from heat and add sugar (2 TBL) and sour salt (1/2 tsp) to taste. Let cool. Mix with sour cream to serve and garnish with any of the following: diced boiled potatoes, diced cucumber, diced hard-boiled eggs or none of the above.