Monday, January 25, 2016

January Soups

Artichoke and Potato Soup


3 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup dry white wine
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 14-oz jar of artichoke bottoms, drained and cubed
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped parsley as garnish
Saute the onions in olive oil over low heat for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and continue sautéing another minute. Add the wine, cover and cook over low heat for 5 more minutes. Add the potatoes and artichokes, cover, and continue cooking on low for 5 minutes. Add the broth, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil for 5 minutes, then reduced to a simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and serve topped with parsley.

Chickpea a la Provencale

Chickpea a la Provencale
Ingredients
1 can chickpeas
¼ cup olive oil
2 leeks, thinly sliced
5 cups water
¼ lb of chopped spinach
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ tsp thyme
1 ½ tsp rosemary
1 ½ tsp oregano
1 ½ tsp marjoram
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
Fried croutons for garnish
Saute the leeks in the olive oil over medium heat. Add the water, chickpeas, spinach, garlic, herbs, and seasonings. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce to medium-low. Cook covered for 30 minutes. Blend soup in a Vita-Mix or food mill. Serve topped with croutons.

Mushroom Soup a la Marie Louise

Mushroom Soup a la Marie Louise 

1 celery stalk
1 carrot
4 oz mushrooms
½ onion
4 Tbsp oil
2 ½ cups water
1 bay leaf
1 bouillon cube (I used mushroom from Polish grocery store)
½ tsp dried thyme or tarragon
Salt and pepper to taste


Cut the celery, carrots, mushroom, and onions in thin slices. Saute 4 minutes. Pour the water into the pot. Add the mushrooms, bay leaf, bouillon, thyme, salt, and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil and then simmer for 40 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and serve. [I added English Worcestershire sauce also]

Brussels Sprouts Soup

Brussels Sprouts Soup

½ lb Brussels sprouts
2 leeks
1 quart water
1 bouillon cube
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 ½ Tbsp flour
Salt and pepper to taste
1 egg yolk
3 slices of French bread

Cut the Brussels sprouts into thin slices. Slice the leeks and cook in half of the water for 5 minutes. Add the bouillon, olive oil, and the remaining water. Continue cooking another 40 minutes. Mix the flour and 2 Tbsp of soup broth, making a smooth paste. Add this paste to the soup. Add salt and pepper and continue cooking for another 5 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat. Beat the egg yolk in 3 spoonfuls of soup broth. Place a slice of bread in the center of a soup bowl, add 1 tsp of the egg mixture on top of the bread, then pour several ladlefuls of the hot soup on top.

Black-Eyed Pea

Black-Eyed Pea Soup

Ingredients
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 leek, chopped
1 15-oz can or ½ cup dried black-eyed peas
3 ½ cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/3 cup rice
Salt and pepper to taste
1 bay leaf
Pinch of cumin
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, minced

Pour the oil into a soup pot and saute the onions for 2-3 minutes, or until golden. Add the black-eyed peas, broth, salt, pepper, rice, cumin, and bay leaf and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to med-low, cover the pot, and simmer for 30 min. Remove bay leaf an add lemon juice and parsley if desired. [Adding cooked rice separately or reducing the rice amount by half would be superior.]


Spicy English Parsnip Soup

Ingredients for Spicy English Parsnip Soup

Spicy English Parsnip Soup plated

Ingredients
2 parsnips, peeled and sliced
1 medium sized potato, peeled and cubed
½ onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tbsp butter or oil of choice
½ tsp curry powder
¼ tsp ginger powder
3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
½ cup heavy cream or coconut milk or cashew milk
Salt and white pepper to taste
Finely chopped parsley to garnish

Melt butter or oil and saute chopped vegetables on medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle on spices and stire. Add stock and bring to a boil. Then, reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes. Blend the soup in a Vita-Mix until thick and creamy. Add the milk or non-dairy and repeat. Serve garnished with parsley.


Cotriade Bretonne

Cotriade Bretonne fish served in the broth

potatoes dressed in the vinaigrette

Ingredients
4 Tbsp olive oil
1 ½ onions, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
5 cups of fish stock (I used Penzey’s concentrate)
Bouquet garni (thyme, bay leaf, parsley, and chervil or tarragon tied together)
4 potatoes, sliced in quarter or the equivalent of fingerling potatoes
¾ lb cod fish, cut in chunks
Pinch of saffron
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup white wine
3 Tbsp chives, finely chopped

Vinaigrette
¼ cup olive oil
2 Tbsp white balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Pour the olive oil in a pot and saute the onions for 2-3 min. Add the garlic, stock, bouquet garni, and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes, cover, and cook gently for 30 min. Add the fish, salt, pepper, and wine and cook on low for 15 more min. Remove from heat and separate the solids. Serve the bouillon garnished with chives and croutons. Then place fish and potatoes on the plate and dress with the vinaigrette served warm with chopped parsley.


Saint Basil Soup

St. Basil the Great
St. Basil Soup

3 Tbsp oil
½ onion, sliced
¼ lb mushrooms, sliced
1 celery stalk
1 carrot, sliced
4 cups water
1 bouillon cube (mushroom)
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped parsley

Saute the vegetables for 2-3 minutes. Add the water and bouillon cubes. Cook over low for 30 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add salt and pepper and chopped parsley.

September Soups

 Tomato Soup Florentine


¼ cup olive oil
½ onion, finely sliced
4 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp fresh basil
1 bay leaf
½ tsp thyme
1 bouillon cube
3 cups water or chicken stock
1 package frozen or 1 bunch fresh spinach
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated

Heat the oil and add the onions and tomatoes. Saute vegetables 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic cloves, celery, carrots, and herbs. Stir well and saute another 2 min. Add the bouillon cubes and water/stock and bring to a boil. Cover the pot and simmer for 1 hour. Remove the bay leaf. Add the spinach, salt and pepper and cook another 10 min. Stir well. Turn off the heat, and let the soup stand covered 5 min. Serve hot topped with grated cheese.

Creamed Tomato Broccoli


½ lb broccoli
2 garlic cloves
3 cups water
3 parsley sprigs
2 strips lean bacon or one anchovy
3 Tbsp olive oil
3 oz tomato paste (1/2 6-oz can)
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash the broccoli and peel the stem. Chop the broccoli. Separately chop the parsley, garlic, and bacon. Pour the olive oil in a soup pot, add the broccoli, garlic, parsley, and bacon and saute a min or two. Add the tomato paste and water. Stir well and cover for 5 min. Add the remaining water and cook over med for 30 min. Add salt and pepper. Before serving blend the soup. Garnish with cheese right before serving.


Russian Cream of String Bean Soup



 ¼ lb haricot verts fresh or frozen
1 leek, sliced
2 potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 ½ Tbsp butter
3 cups water
1 cup of milk, soy milk, or coconut milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Finely chopped fresh chives or dill


Top and tail the green beans. Prepare the leeks and potatoes. In a large pot, melt the butter and saute the vegetables for 1 min. Stir often. Add the water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to low-medium, cover the pot, and cook the soup slowly for 40 min. When the vegetables are cooked and tender, pass the soup through a sieve or blend it in a blender. Return the soup to the pot and add the milk and seasonings. Stir the soup well and bring it again to a light boil. Turn off the heat and let the soup stand for 10 minutes. Serve the soup hot, and garnish it with small cut string beans that have been cooked separately. Some finely chopped chives or dill may be sprinkled on top.

October Soups

Carrot Soup ala Normandie

1 onion
4 carrots
3 cups water
½ cup milk or unsweetened soy milk
1 ½ Tbsp flour
Pinch of thyme
3 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
3 Tbsp lemon juice (add 1 Tbsp at at time)
Finely minced parsley

Chop onions and carrots finely, put in soup pot, and add water. Cook slowly, bringing the water to a boil. Then let the soup sit, covered, for 20 minutes. Add the milk, flour, thyme, oil, salt, and pepper. Blend in a blender and pour the soup back into the pot. Add the lemon juice, tasting after each Tbsp. Cook slowly for 10 minutes, until hot. Serve the soup with parsley on top. It can be served hot or cold if refrigerated for several hours.

Also pictured are Broccoli Fritters: http://healthiersteps.com/broccoli-fritters/

Cannelini Bean Soup

1 can cannellini beans
6 cups water
1 onion
1 carrot
1 leek
1 celery stalk
A few leaves of spinach
2 garlic cloves
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 bouillon cube
Salt and pepper to taste
Finely chopped thyme

Cut the onions, carrots, leeks, celery, and greens into thin pieces. Mince the garlic. Add them to the beans, water, olive oil and bouillon cube. Cook covered on medium heat for 1 hour. Add salt, pepper, and thyme.

 Brodo Ala Romana



Ingredients
4 cups water
1 cup white wine
1 bouillon cube
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, peeled and cubed
Salt and pepper to taste

Pour the water and wine into a soup pot. Add all the ingredients and let it boil over low-medium heat for 30 minutes. Cover the pot and let the soup simmer for at least 1 hour 15 minutes. Strain the vegetables and serve the broth hot. This serves as a stock base for other soups or stews.


Ossobuco Soup


Ingredients
¼ cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and cubed
1 heart of celery, thinly sliced
1 ½ cups dry white wine
Rind of half a lemon, grated
1 ½ tsp dry sage
1 tsp rosemary leaves
1 tsp thyme
2 garlic cloves
5 pitted olives
4 cups stock (vegetable or fish)
½ cup Italian rice
3 tsp capers
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh Italian parsley, chopped for garnish


Heat the olive oil in a good-sized pot, and gently saute the onions, carrots, and celery for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the wine, cover the pot, and continue cooking for about 10 minutes. Put the lemon rind, sage, rosemary, thyme, garlic, and olives through a food processor. Add this mixture to the soup pot. Blend and stir thoroughly. Add the stock, rice, capers, salt, and pepper. Stir and cover the pot. Cook over medium-low for 45 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the soup rest, covered, for 10 minutes. Sprinkle fresh chopped parsley on top of each bowl and serve with Parmesan for topping.

 French Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients
3 cups water
2 cups pumpkin peeled and cubed or boxed puree
1 large potato, peeled and cubed
1 large carrot, sliced thin
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove
Pinch tarragon
Salt and pepper to taste
1 bouillon cube, chicken or vegetable
1 cup milk or unsweetened soy milk
2 Tbsp sunflower or safflower oil
¼ cup parsley, chopped finely

Pour the water in the pot. Add the pumpkin, potatoes, and carrot and bring to a boil. Add onion, minced garlic, tarragon, salt, and pepper and continue on low boil for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat and simmer another 20 minutes. Blend the soup in a blender and pour it back into the pot. Add the milk/soy milk and oil, stir well, and simmer for another 10 minutes. Serve garnished with chopped parsley.

Portuguese Kale Soup


Ingredients
1 can white beans or 1 cup of dried white beans
5 cups of water
1 large onion, chopped
½ lb kale, chopped (one bag)
1 large potato, peeled and cubed
3 oz tomato paste
4 garlic cloves
1 chorizo sausage, sliced
1 garlic bouillon cube
1 pork bouillon cube
Salt and pepper to taste

Soak the beans overnight if using dried beans. Rinse in cold water. Add the water to a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the beans, onions, kale, potatoes, tomato paste, chorizo, and garlic. Cook slowly over low-medium heat for 2 hours uncovered. Add more water if necessary. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pot. Season to taste.

Chinese Cucumber Soup


3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 hothouse cucumber, peeled and diced
4 mushrooms, washed and sliced thinly
2 scallions, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
4 tsp sesame oil
½ Tbsp rice wine vinegar
Pinch of dried ginger
Place the broth in a soup pot and bring it to a boil. Add the cucumbers, mushrooms, scallions, salt, and pepper. Cover and cook on medium low heat for 15-20 minutes. Blend the soup in a blender. Add the sesame oil, vinegar, and ginger. Chill in the refrigerator for a few hours and serve cold or serve it hot.

Potato Dumpling Soup


Ingredients
½ onion, diced
1 carrot, sliced
1 celery stalk, sliced
2 mushrooms
3 Tbsp oil
2 ½ cups water
1 cube of vegetable or chicken bouillon
Salt and pepper to taste

Dumplings:
¾ cup of mashed potatoes
½ tsp salt
1 egg
1 ½ tsp chopped parsley
1 tsp chopped fresh chives
¼ cup flour

Slice the vegetables thinly and saute slowly in oil for a few minutes in a soup pot. Add the water gradually, stirring. Add salt and pepper. Cover the pot and cook over medium-low for 30 minutes. While the soup is cooking, combine all the ingredients for the dumplings. [Note: Be sure that the mashed potatoes are well-seasoned before combining with the remaining dumpling ingredients.] Roll the paste into a thin, long cylinder. Cut into 1-inch lengths and roll them in the palms of your hands. Drop the dumplings into the soup and continue cooking covered for another 8-10 minutes. Serve hot.

Ham and Rice Soup

Ingredients
2 Tbsp butter or olive oil
1 leek
1 tomato peeled and diced
1 ham steak, cubed
3 cups water
1 cube of ham bouillon (e.g., Goya brand)
½ cup cooked medium grain rice
1 pinch saffron
½ tsp dried or fresh thyme

Saute the leek, tomato, and ham in butter or oil for 2 minutes on medium low. Add the water, bouillon, and spices. Simmer over medium heat 20-30 minutes.

Italian Owl spoonrest


November Soups

Minestra Toscana


Ingredients
¼ cup olive oil
½ of a yellow onion, chopped
3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 cup white wine
1 bouquet garni (thyme, oregano, bay leaf, tied together)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 carrot, sliced julienne
½ red pepper, sliced julienne
1 small zucchini, diced
8 spinach leaves
¼ cup olives (black or green, pitted)
¼ cup Italian rice or small noodles
Grated Parmesan or Romano cheese for garnish


Pour the olive oil into a large soup pot and saute the onion slightly for about 2 minutes over medium heat. Add the broth, wine, bouquet garni, salt, and pepper and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the carrots, pepper, zucchini, spinach, and olives. Cover the pot and cook slowly for 1 hour. Add the rice and more broth if necessary, and simmer the soup for 15 to 20 minutes more. Remove the bouquet garni. Serve hot and garnish with grated cheese.

 Yellow Lentil Soup


Ingredients
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 medium turnip, diced
4 cups water
½ butternut squash, peeled and chunked
¾ cup yellow split lentils
1 sprig of thyme
1 bay leaf
Fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Pour oil into a soup pot. Saute onions over medium heat until soft. Add celery, carrot, and turnip. Saute another minute. Add the water, squash, lentils, thyme, bay leaf, and parsley. Bring to a boil and reduce to medium for 30 min to an hour until the lentils completely break down. Salt and pepper to taste. Remove the bay leaf before serving.

 Polish Pearl Barley Soup


2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 ½ leeks, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and sliced
1 celery heart, chopped
1 turnip, diced
4 cups beef broth
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup parsley, chopped
Sour cream

Pour the oil into the saucepan and gently saute the leeks, carrots, celery, and turnip for 3 minutes stirring often. Add the broth, barley, salt, and pepper and bring the soup to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 45-50 minutes. Add the parsley, turn off  the heat, and rest the soup for 10 minutes. Serve the soup hot with a teaspoon of sour cream if desired.

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

Ingredients
4 cups water
5 Jerusalem artichokes, washed and sliced
3 medium waxy potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 leek, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
3 Tbsp oil or butter
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup milk or unsweetened soy milk
Fresh parsley or chives for garnish

Pout the water in a soup pot and add the Jerusalem artichokes and potatoes. Cover the pot, bring the water to a boil, and then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer gently for 45 minutes. Slice the leek and onions, and mince the garlic. Place them in a separate pot, add the oil or butter, and saute over low heat with the pan covered for 3 minutes, maximum. Stir frequently, and see that the vegetables don’t burn. Add the leek-garli-onion mixture to the soup and continue cooking for and added 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow the soup to cool. Blend the soup in a blender or food processor or pass through a sieve. Return the soup to a clean pot and add the seasonings and milk. Mix well and reheat the soup, bringing it to a boil. Turn off the heat and rest covered for 5 minutes. Garnish with fresh parsley or chives. Can also be refrigerated and served cold.

December Soups

 Saint Lucy Soup Sicilian Style


St. Lucy was martyred by having her eyes torn out but later becomes the Saint that welcomes the Christmas season for Skandinavians



Ingredients
8 cups water
½ cup olive oil
½ lb whole-grain dried wheat (farro)
½ lb dried chickpeas or 1 8-oz can
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, sliced
2 bay leaves
Salt and pepper

Pour water and oil into a pot. Add the other ingredients and let it boil slowly covered for 3-4 hours, stirring occasionally. Check the seasonings, remove bay leaves, and serve topped with Parmesan cheese.

Bearn Country Soup





Ingredients
1 can of navy beans
2 quarts water
1 leek, julienned
1 yellow beet, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
½ small cabbage, coarsely chopped
10 green beans
3 potatoes, peeled and left whole
Bouquet garni (1 bay leaf, 2 sprigs thyme, 4 sprigs parsley)
3 sweet Italian sausages
1 garlic clove, minced
1/8 lb salt pork
Salt and pepper

Soak the beans overnight. Drain and rinse. Pour the water into a large soup pot and all the vegetables except the potatoes, bouquet garni, and garlic. Cover the pot and cook on medium-low for 1 ½ hrs. Add water if necessary. Add the potatoes, herbs, sausages, garlic, and bacon and continue cooking for another 1 ¼ hrs. Taste and add seasoning. Remove the potatoes, sausage, and bacon and hold warm. Simmer 15 minutes longer and remove bouquet garni. Serve hot with French bread and then serve the potatoes and sausage on a separate plate accompanied by a green salad with some vinaigrette over the potatoes.

 

Saint Nicholas Soup






1 oz butter
1 leek
2 medium carrots
2 turnips
2 potatoes
½ head of cabbage
½ tsp salt
2 quarts water
Croutons
1/6 cup chervil, chopped

Wash and peel vegetables and slice into small pieces. Melt the butter in a large soup pot. Add the vegetables and salt and stir a few times. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let it rest for 15-20 minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium low and cook for 30 minutes covered, stirring occasionally. Blend the cooked soup in a blender until creamy. Serve topped with croutons and chopped chervil.


Zuppa Toscana








Ingredients
1/6 cup olive oil
½ onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
½ Tbsp minced sage
1 Tbsp thyme
8 slices Italian bread
4 tomatoes, peeled or 1 16-oz can of tomatoes
2 cups vegetable stock
2 cups white wine
Salt and pepper
Grated Parmesan cheese

Heat olive oil in a pot. Add onion, garlic, and herbs and saute for 1-2 minutes without browning. Add stale bread slices and continue cooking for a minute or two while stirring and turn off the heat. In a separate pot, cook the tomatoes for 4-5 minutes if fresh. Add the stock, wine, salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium-low and add the bread mixture. Continue cooking 12-15 minutes. Lower the heat and simmer another 15 minutes. Serve hot topped with Parmesan cheese.


Acorn Squash Soup




Ingredients
1 large acorn squash, cubed (I used two delicata squash)
½ large onion, chopped
½ cup precooked Arborio rice
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 cups water
1 cup milk or unsweetened soy milk
Pinch sugar
Salt and white pepper to taste
Chopped parsley


Peel and cube the squash. Place cubes into a soup pot with onion, cooked rice, celery, and water. Cook the soup, covered over medium heat 30 minutes. Blend the soup and pour back into the pot. Add milk, oil, sugar, salt, and pepper. Bring almost to a boil and reduce to simmer for 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

Lagniappe: Kimchee Jigae



I boiled pressed tofu marinated in gochujang paste, boy choy, chicken stock, sweet potato starch noodles, and sliced Danish bacon (I like the texture between ham and bacon).

Vintage Meringue Pies

Recently, I was in my local independent bookstore (Blue Willow Books in west Houston) and I spotted a book dedicated to vintage pies. 


http://www.amazon.com/Easy-as-Pie-Vintage-cookbooks/dp/1595833765

Meringue topping is popular in Texas, but usually on coconut, chocolate, lemon, or banana cream fillings. Here are three of the odder meringue pies I've seen. The Jelly Pie is probably a product of the rationing during WWII.

Mint Ice Cream Meringue Pie

Mint Meringue Ice Cream Pie
 This pie calls for a crumb crust filled with 1 quart of chocolate chip mint ice cream. Freeze the ice cream again for an hour. Then topped the ice cream with a meringue made from 3 egg whites whipped until stiff and then incorporated with 1/2 cup of sugar. Bake at 500F for 2-3 minutes.

Cranberry Meringue Pie

Cranberry Meringue Pie
Cook 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar with 1/4 cup water until it forms a syrup. Add cranberries and cook until the stop popping. Mix 2 Tbsp flour,  1/4 tsp salt, with 4 egg yolks until smooth. Add 3 Tbsp of cooked cranberry filling. Then transfer the thickener to the cranberry filling and cook 3 minutes. Stir in 2 Tbsp butter and 1 tsp vanilla extract and let filling cool. Beat the 4 egg whites until stiff and add 4 Tbsp powdered sugar. Fill crumb crust with cranberry filling and top with meringue. Bake at 450F until the meringue is set and lightly browned.

Jelly Meringue Pie

Jelly Pie
Cream 1/2 butter. Add 1/2 granulated sugar and cream together. Add 3 Tbsp flour and 1 tsp salt and beat until light and fluffy. Beat 3 egg yolks and add to the mixure. Slowly add juice of 1/2 lemon and
3/4 cup of red currant jelly. Make a single pastry crust and fill with jelly filling. Bake 450F for 10, then decrease to 350F and bake an additional 20 minutes. Beat 3 egg whites with 6 Tbsp powdered sugar and top the pie with the merigue. Bake for an additional 15 minutes at 350F.