Archive for the 'Slow Soup' Category

Roasted Squash and Apple Soup

Hey there! So I’m back from my little hiatus, ready to soup again. Last weekend I was at the farmer’s market — specifically there to buy cider from this fantastic place in Missouri that comes to the market every fall and has the best cider I have EVER TASTED — and while I was eating my delicious farmer’s market crepe I was thinking up a soup I could make with my new purchases… squash and apples. The result is like autumn in a bowl.

The flavors went together very well, and the apple flavor in particular is fairly strong so that the first taste is almost like a sweet and savory applesauce, and then the flavors of squash and thyme and shallots come through as well. Enjoy!

Roasted Squash and Apple Soup
serves 4

about 2 pounds of winter squash (I used one each of a medium-sized butternut and delicata), halved lengthwise and seeds removed
3-4 medium apples (I used 2 empire and 1 granny smith), quartered with cores removed (I left the peels on; you do whatever you like)
3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
3 T butter
2 medium shallots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken stock (sub vegetable for vegetarian soup)
2 t brown sugar
leaves from about 4 sprigs fresh thyme
salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Put the squash (cut side up), apples, and carrots on a baking pan and roast for about 45 minutes.
2. Once the veggies are about finished, melt the butter in a soup pot or Dutch oven and add the shallots and garlic over medium heat. Stir occasionally, and cook until translucent and starting to caramelize.
3. Scoop the flesh out of the squash, and add with the roasted carrots and apples to the pot and reduce heat to medium low. Cook together for about 10 minutes.
4. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer for about 25 minutes.
5. Puree the soup with an immersion blender, or in batches in a regular blender. I didn’t puree for too long because I wanted some chunks of carrots and apple peel. Return to pot and stir in sugar and thyme, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup

Another CSA-inspired recipe (abundance of carrots this week!), this is something I made up based on a bunch of simple carrot soup recipe research, with an added spicy-lime twist. It’s been a stormy summer in St. Louis thus far, and this is the perfect complement to the wet and steamy weather.

The potato is optional, but it will thicken up the soup a bit. Without the potato it will still taste great but might be a little thin.

Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup
serves about 4

INGREDIENTS
3 T butter (can substitute olive oil for vegan soup)
1 Vidalia onion, roughly chopped
dash salt
1 pound young carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
2 or 3 inches of fresh ginger (to taste), peeled and roughly chopped
1 yukon gold potato, peeled and roughly chopped (optional; see above)
4 cups vegetable stock
white pepper
juice of 1.5 limes
cayenne pepper

PROCEDURE
1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a large stockpot, and then add the onions and dash of salt and sweat for 4-5 minutes. Add the remaining vegetables and cook until softened, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Add at least 3 cups of the vegetable stock (add more to cover all the vegetables if necessary) and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 20 minutes. Sprinkle in a 1/4 tsp of white pepper.
3. Puree the soup using an immersion or regular blender. When thoroughly blended, squeeze in the lime juice and sprinkle in cayenne pepper to taste (I like at least a teaspoon, but I like my spicy food to be pretty darn spicy).

White Chicken Chili

This is another delicious recipe from my mother-in-law. I have, of course, put my own spin on things — her recipe is actually way simpler, it just called for throwing everything in the pot and cooking for an hour, which trust me still works and tastes great. I just can’t leave well enough alone! I drew additional inspiration from a white chili recipe at Simply Recipes, which is worth a look for some interesting variations.

White Chicken Chili
serves 8

INGREDIENTS
2 large or 3 small cooked* boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (about 2 1/2 cups), diced or shredded
1 medium onion, chopped fine
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp canola oil
1 each red and yellow pepper, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
salt
1 4 oz. can green chilies
1 jalepeño pepper, chopped fine (optional)
1 cup white wine
3 cans beans (1 use one can each of northern, pinto, and cannelloni — do not drain)
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
3 cups chicken broth
juice from 1 lime
shredded jack or cheddar cheese

optional garnishes: cilantro (recommended!), low fat sour cream/plain yogurt; fresh tomato; fresh salsa; guacamole; avocado slices; chopped scallions; tortilla chips

PROCEDURE
1. Poach the chicken if necessary (see instructions below).*white-chili
2. Sweat the onions and garlic in a large stock pot or dutch oven in canola oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add the peppers, carrots, and celery and a pinch of salt, and sweat for five more minutes. Stir in the jalepeños and chilies.
3. Add 1 cup dry white wine, turn the heat up to medium-high and allow to simmer for about 15 minutes.
4. Add the beans and spices and simmer for 10 minutes.
5. Pour in the chicken broth and add the chicken. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 45 mins. Stir in the lime juice.
6. Top with shredded cheese and any other desired garnishes to serve.

* If you already have some leftover cooked chicken to use up (I imagine leftover turkey would also work pretty well) — great. If not, to poach the chicken: put into a saute pan and add enough water or chicken broth to fully cover. Over medium heat bring to a light simmer (not a rolling boil), and then turn off the heat and cover for at least 20 mins.

Roasted Carrot Soup

I had a whole bunch of carrots to use up, and so I thought — what better way to get rid of these carrots than to try a new soup recipe. I also threw in some ripe pears and rosemary because that’s what I happened to have in my kitchen, but these pureed veggie soups tend to be pretty forgiving (especially with a versatile base like carrot). I actually planned to use up ginger but mine turned out to be kind of sad and old so I left it out and tried the rosemary instead– so experiment based on what you feel like using up!

Roasted Carrot Soup
Serves about 4

8 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
1 medium red onion, chopped
vegetable oil
salt
5-6 garlic cloves
2 pears, peeled, cored, and sliced
2 T. rice vinegar (apple cider vinegar would also work)
1 sprig rosemary
1 quart low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
juice of 1 lemon

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. While the oven is heating up, peel and slice the carrots and chop the onions. Pile these on a baking sheet (ideally the type with a rim) lined with a Silpat (if you have one), or parchment paper (to prevent sticking). Spread out the veggies and then drizzle with about a teaspoon of oil and sprinkle with salt. Pop this in the oven. Set your timer for 25 minutes.
2. Add the garlic and pears to the baking sheet in the oven as you prepare them. Stir everything periodically.
3. Add another tsp. oil to a large (at least 4-5 quart) saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the veggies when they’re done (should be slightly browned and well softened). Cook the veggies 3-5 minutes, and then stir in the vinegar and add the rosemary. Cook about 1 minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer about 5 minutes. Remove the rosemary.
4. Puree the mixture in a blender (or with an immersion blender). Return to clean saucepan, stir in the lemon juice, and warm over medium-low heat.

Quite good with French bread — would also be yum with a dark bread too (I love pumpernickel). Enjoy!

Peppery Chicken Noodle Soup

This is not a mild, blah chicken noodle soup. It features a straightforward chicken flavor complemented by thick, comforting noodles and a really potent shot of black pepper (great for clearing up those wintertime sniffles). It’s good year round, but especially nice when things really start to feel wintery outside.

Peppery Chicken Noodle Soup
serves 8-10

INGREDIENTS
1 quart chicken stock
1 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 bunch celery, chopped
1 T. ground pepper* (at least)
salt to taste
3 chicken breasts
4-5 carrots, chopped
1/2 bag no yolk (Amish) noodles**

PROCEDURE
1. Add chicken stock plus one full container’s worth of water to large pot. Add onion, celery, pepper, and salt, and simmer over low heat for about 1 hour (vegetables should be translucent).
2. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 15 minutes.
3. Remove and shred the chicken. Taste the broth and add more pepper if desired.
4. Bring the broth to a boil, add carrots, and cook noodles (about 25-30 mins, depending on package directions).
5. Add the chicken and serve.

* This is the pretty much the only thing I make using pre-ground pepper rather than grinding it up myself, since I add so much. Taste as you go, not everyone will like this amount of pepper as it really does dominate the soup.
** I use the big fat Amish-style noodles for this.  The brand I buy is called Harrington. Regular egg noodles will work too but the cooking time will be different and they won’t absorb as much of the broth (follow the directions on the package for the cooking time). You can also make your own noodles if you are so inclined — I’ve tried it, and it turns out okay (they take some time to dry, but the cooking time is way less, just a few minutes). I don’t really have the patience or tools to roll out and cut nice noodles–it’s a pretty labor-intensive job and really not my forte–so I prefer to buy them premade.

Loaded Potato Skin Soup

This soup is one of my husband’s favorites– and, I thought, appropriate for Superbowl Sunday (aka SOUPerbowl Sunday. HA). I got the original recipe from his mother, who is absolutely amazing in the kitchen. She has taught me a lot about soup over the years.

I have made significant changes to the original recipe in an effort to cut some of the fat and calories. My husband doesn’t seem to notice a difference in the end result. Still, I thought I’d leave all of the ingredients intact along with my variations so that both the decadent and the less decadent (but still absolutely delish) options are available.

Loaded Potato Skin Soup
serves 8-10

INGREDIENTS:
4 large potatoes*
2/3 cup butter OR 1/2 cup butter and 1/4 cup canola oil
2/3 cup flour
6 cups milk (I use skim)
salt & pepper to taste
4 green onions, chopped (I use both the white and green parts for this recipe)
1 cup sour cream OR 1 cup plain yogurt
2 cups/1 pound crisp cooked crumbled bacon OR 1/2 pound low fat bacon
5 ounces cheddar cheese, grated (1 use Cabot 75% reduced fat)

PROCEDURE:

potato

1. Adjust the racks in your oven so that they are a few inches apart. Scrub potatoes and bake on the lower rack  in 350 degree oven for about 35 minutes.
2. Line a cookie sheet with foil and add slices of bacon. Add it to the top rack of the oven and cook for 15 more minutes with the potatoes.
3. Cut potatoes in half, scoop out the meat, and set aside. Mash the potatoes.  Chop half the potato peels and discard the rest. Chop up the bacon into small pieces.
4. Melt butter (and canola oil, if using) in large stockpot or dutch oven and slowly blend in flour with a wire whisk. Gradually add milk, whisking constantly. Add salt & pepper to taste (I add a lot) and simmer over low heat, taking care that it does not burn.
5. Add potato meat to hot milk mixture, blending well. Add onions (reserve a little bit for garnish), potato peels, sour cream/yogurt, and bacon. Heat thoroughly and then add cheese and melt it in. (Add additional milk if soup is too thick.) Taste again and add more salt & pepper if necessary.
6. Garnish with more cheese and any leftover chopped green onions on top to serve.

* I use regular russet potatoes for this recipe, mainly because I like the texture of the skins. A friend suggested yukon golds would be good — they do have a nice creamy texture and would be an interesting variation

Quick Soup Slow Soup (Hot Soup Cold Soup)

I’ve taken to categorizing the soup recipes here as slow soups and quick soups — I think both types of soup has its place. Sometimes, you might want to spend an afternoon roasting vegetables and chopping garlic and simmering for hours on end. And sometimes you just want something easy, quick, and delicious. Both types of soup priorities are perfectly legitimate, and I’ll be covering both on this site… but I think it’s an important to make the distinction.



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