Browsing Tag

Soups

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THE MODEST CABBAGE – THE UNSUNG HERO AMONG ALL VEG

braised red cabbage

THE MODEST CABBAGE – THE UNSUNG HERO AMONG ALL VEG And yes, we are still cooking. Let’s be honest – some of the “oh crap” kitchen mistakes have turned out (for the most part) to be something outstanding. With the cost of food skyrocketing, most of us are trying to incorporate affordable ingredients. So why not make something altogether different for dinner? Consider the humble yet stalwart cabbage, which is one of the unsung heroes in the veggie arsenal. It…

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THE INDOMITABLE AND TRENDY KALE

KALE AND SAUSAGE CROSTINI

Oh kale, I love thee, let me count the ways. Kale, the veggie titan that’s killing it in every Farmer’s Market and produce department. Thousands of pounds are consumed and purchased worldwide, as it’s the trendiest and most hyped leafy green on the veggie Vogue parade in recent years. Once unappealing and certainly given the bypass, it’s now the number one contender and much revered by all. Packing a big wallop nutritionally, it’s a giant among veggies, as it’s brimming…

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WHITE BEAN HAM SOUP WITH CHORIZO

WHITE BEANS WITH HAM AND CHORIZO STEW

The holidays are formally over with the ringing of the new year.   After vast consumptions of high caloric foods, which were officially launched at Thanksgiving, a mountain of sweets later and the invariable intake of more than our fair share of cocktails, wine and bubbly, we’re riddled with usual post-festivities-guilt over the number of calories ingested.  The typical diet favored resolutions come into play, along with that extra hour at the gym.  Yet some of us need some hearty fare to counter…

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ROOT VEGGIE SOUP

Root Vegetable Soup

This simple and extremely satisfying soup can be made with whatever root veggies you have on hand.  Rutabagas, celery root, parsnips, carrots, sweet and regular potatoes, turnips.  There’s really no exaggerated usage here as all are quite content cooking side by side.  Together with onions, garlic and a few condiments, you have created an earthy and satisfying meal to remove the chill on a frosty winter’s night.   Give the carnivore in you a rest and try this robust veggie…

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BOUILLABAISSE

Bouillabaisse, soups

Much is expected from fish stews, but what makes this version of Bouillabaisse anything but insipid is the combination of Provençale herbs, spices and the touch of Pernod or Pastis (licorice flavored liqueur) in the broth.  A traditional Provençale seafood stew originating from the port of Marseille, Bouillabaisse is a distant relative of the Cioppino and may even be related to our Gumbo.  The present delight in this stew-like soup is the abundance of fish and shellfish in it.  Every…

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VICHYSSOISE – CREAM OF POTATO AND LEEK

Vichyssoise

The irreproachable character of Vichyssoise makes this fair and virtuous soup one of the most elegant around.  The simplicity of the unadulterated ingredients create a clandestine appearance, making you wonder how this delicate soup can turn out so wickedly good. When potatoes, leeks, onions, chicken broth and cream have developed a close bond, a velvety cream is born that’s not only delectable, but incomparable in excellence. This is another of those soups that’s typically served chilled, but I’m adventurous and…

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CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP

Chicken Noddle Soup

From youthful recollections, you know your ma’s and grandma’s Chicken Noddle Soup was one of the best things you ever tasted.  Those are gratifying memories of comfort and home associated with this classic which removed the chill from a frigid winter’s eve and also provided essential TLC when you were feeling poorly. We have succumbed to the relentless gravitational pull of processed foods and with the diurnal 24 hour countdown, it’s easier by far to reach for a can of…

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GREEN CHICKEN POSOLE

Posole Green

Typical posole doesn’t include potatoes, but I had this version made by of my friends in California and it was such a show stopper I had to steal her recipe.  Originally from Mexico City, Marucha knows Posole doesn’t call for potatoes, but her family has made it this way for generations.   The chicken, potatoes and hominy here are a triumvirate dream. 1 ½ medium onions 4 garlic cloves – rough chopped ½ TSP of anise seeds 1 TSP cumin…

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MEXICAN RED POSOLE

MEXICAN RED POSOLE

Posole is not the “fix it and forget it type of soup”.  If you have delved into my blog, you’ll know that I am not a tremendous supporter of the crockpot, as I use it rarely.  There is preparation involved in posole, but the adventurous journey is well worth the effort.  The broth has tremendous complexity and depth, as this soup is definitely large and in charge, with a bit of a kick which can be made as spicy as…

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ITALIAN WEDDING SOUP

Italian Wedding Soup

If you are occupying idyllic thoughts of a bride and groom delicately sampling this soup to give them “vigor” for their upcoming wedding night, cast them aside.  Nothing remotely close am afraid.  The term “minestra maritata” delves around the marriage of flavors attained when all the ingredients really get to know each other as they cook. There are plenty of classic Italian flavors recognized throughout this satisfying, yet light tasting soup, which appears at almost every Italian restaurant in the…

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BAY CIOPPINO

Soups, Cioppino

Alcatraz may be one of the many legendary and attention-grabbing attractions making San Francisco a colorful destination, but Ciopinno is positively an icon there.   With a name like Cioppino, it has a heavy Italian influence permeating from the Genoese settlers in the 1800’s.  It is a sought after culinary sensation, offered at almost every restaurant in the Golden City, with countless chefs giving it their own spin. This is a savory and superlative brothy soup, which is very adaptable…

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PASTA E FAGIOL – BEAN AND PASTA SOUP

PASTA FAGIOL

Pasta e Fagioli (Fagiol) another brilliant dish hailing from the incomparable Emilia-Romana region of Italy.  The beans here are Great Northern, Cannellini or Borlotti and they are accompanied by small round pasta called Ditalini. No matter the different ways of pronunciation, Fasola, Fagiol or Fazool, it’s so swanky a dish, even Dean Martin’s “That’s Amore” has lyrics in its favor: “When the stars make you drool, just like Pasta Fazool, that’s Amore”.  And drool is exactly what happens when inhaling…

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SOUP’S ON

SOUPS

“I live on good soup, not on fine words”.  Moliére There’s no doubt it – soup’s approachable topic of discussion. Who doesn’t crave or give unswerving devotion to a bowl of steamy, sexy, stick-to-your-ribs soup? Hailing as far back as far back as 20,000 BC, give or take a few years, soup’s been a companion to early man and deeply embedded in the history of cooking. In French the word is “soupe” and in Latin “suppa” means “bread soaked in…

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TUSCAN BEAN SOUP – LA RIBOLLITA

Ribolita

Countless Tuscan dishes have peasant origins and this recipe is no exception.  Ribollita means “re-boiled” and in the old days, the previous day’s Minestrone was invigorated and given some additional girth with the addition of old bread. The classic ingredients are cannellini or Great Northern Beans, vegetables and bread, although there are countless variations – however, without the bread it is just veggie soup and not genuine.  One of the secrets to an authentic Ribollita is to puree some of…

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Pantry Rat