Soup Recipes

Roasted Broccoli Soup

by Anne Maxfield on December 4, 2014

Accidental Locavore Roasted Broccoli SoupWhen the Accidental Locavore saw this recipe, it looked like a no-brainer and then when my cousin offered me the pumpkin seeds (they’re the garnish) from her Halloween effort, it became a must-try. This made about a quart of soup. The list looks long, but half of it is for the pumpkin seeds which can be made in advance.Accidental Locavore Roasted Broccoli

 

For the soup:

  • 2 pounds broccoli, stalks cut into ½” slices and quartered, and heads cut into florets
  • 10 tablespoons olive oil, divided use
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, run through a garlic press
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 quarts chicken stock
  • Salt

Accidental Locavore Pumpkin SeedsFor the pumpkin seeds:

  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • Salt

Soup:

Preheat oven to 375°. Spread the broccoli on a large baking sheet and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Roast until broccoli is tender and browned, about 25 minutes.

In a Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in the coriander and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add roasted broccoli, buttermilk, and just enough stock to barely cover vegetables. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat. Working in batches if necessary, transfer vegetables and liquid to a blender. Blend broccoli until a smooth puree forms (be careful and don’t over-fill the blender). Slowly add 4 tablespoons of the olive oil while blender is running. Return the soup to the pot and add as much of the remaining stock as necessary to thin to your desired consistency. Season with salt to taste. Serve with pumpkin seed garnish and enjoy!

Pumpkin Seeds:

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a mixing bowl, toss the pumpkin seeds with 2 tablespoons olive oil, coriander, cumin, mustard seeds and turmeric. Season with salt. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Let cool. Taste and add more salt to taste.

My verdict: There are things that work and things that don’t. In this case, the pumpkin seeds are definitely worth doing (although I added a lot more salt than the recipe called for), and make a great snack! Any kind of winter squash seeds will work as well. The soup on the other hand was a big disappointment. Even with multiple blending, it still had little tough bits of broccoli – probably from the stems – that were annoying. Surprisingly, there wasn’t a big broccoli taste either. I would have thought that roasting it would have given it a lot of flavor. Frank thought there was too much oil in it and I thought it badly needed seasoning, but even salt, cumin and lemon zest didn’t go far enough.

 

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Turkey Leftovers? 4-Chile Turkey Chili!

by Anne Maxfield on November 27, 2014

Accidental Locavore Turkey ChiliAfter the first round of sandwiches, the Accidental Locavore is always looking for interesting uses for turkey leftovers. Since there was an early influx of leftovers from making gravy with a bunch of wings, I shredded the meat and used it for a (not-very-authentic) version of chili. This was pretty free-form, so use it as a starting point (and don’t let all the ingredients scare you, I just used what was in the house). Made about 3 big bowls.

 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 1 poblano chile, diced
  • 1 serrano chile, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ancho chile
  • 1 chipotle chile
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 cup dark beer (Guinness)
  • 1 small can tomatoes (14 oz)
  • 1 ½ cups shredded turkey
  • 1 small can kidney or black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder or 1 tablespoon grated unsweetened chocolate
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano (Mexican if you have it)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped cilantro and grated cheddar for garnish

In a Dutch oven or large pot, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onions, poblano, serrano chile and garlic and stir to coat with the oil. Cover and cook for 10 minutes until the onions are translucent. Remove the cover and sauté until they are well caramelized and reduced by about ½.

While the onions are cooking, briefly toast the ancho and chipotle chiles in a small fry pan over medium heat, about a minute on each side. Remove from heat and rehydrate in a small bowl of boiling water for 20 minutes. Slice into 1/8” strips.

Add the chile powder, cumin and coriander to the onion mix and sauté for about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add the beer and deglaze the pan, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom. Cook for about 5 minutes until the alcohol has cooked out.

Add the tomatoes (breaking them up if you use whole tomatoes), turkey, beans, brown sugar, chocolate and oregano. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.

Bring to a boil, then to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve garnished with cilantro and grated cheddar and enjoy!

My verdict: Not at all authentic, but tasted great and satisfied my craving for chili! As I said in the introduction, this looks like a lot of ingredients, but it was all stuff I had in the house, so I just tossed it in. I think it was a little sweet with the brown sugar, so I added about a tablespoon of cider vinegar to cut some of the sweetness. The chocolate and beer add a nice depth of flavor, but, again, you can leave them out—although I’d probably add a little chicken broth to replace the beer.

 

 

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Roasted Potato Leek and Garlic Soup

by Anne Maxfield on November 13, 2014

Accidental Locavore Roasted Leek and Potato SoupAfter a few wonderful bowls of soup at this year’s Soup-a-Bowl (the annual benefit for the Poughkeepsie Farm Project), the Accidental Locavore’s husband was heard muttering about how he’d like some of that potato leek soup with the roasted garlic. And when he came back from the farm with leeks and potatoes, I knew he was serious! This is mostly from a recipe of Ina Garten’s I found. Serves 6.

 

  • 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 3 leeks, white and light green parts, cleaned, cut in half lengthwise and then in ½” slices
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine, plus extra for serving
  • 6 to 7 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces crème fraîche
  • 1-2 heads roasted garlic (see below)

Accidental Locavore Leeks and PotatoesPreheat the oven to 400°.

Combine the potatoes and leeks on a sheet pan in a single layer. Add the olive oil, salt, and pepper, and toss to coat. Roast for 40 to 45 minutes, turning them with a spatula a few times, until very tender and lightly golden.

Remove the pan from the oven and place over 2 burners. Stir in the wine and 1 cup of chicken stock and cook over low heat, scraping up any roasted bits sticking to the pan.

In batches, transfer the roasted vegetables to a food processor or blender, adding the pan liquid and about 5 cups of the chicken stock in batches and purée. As you finish a batch, pour it into a large pot or Dutch oven. When it’s all in the pot, add the remaining 1- 2 cups of stock to make a thick soup. Add the cream, crème fraîche, and salt and pepper as needed. Heat over medium-low heat until heated through. Serve and enjoy!

Accidental Locavore Roasted Potatoes and LeeksMy verdict: I’ve never made vichyssoise with crème fraîche before and if there wasn’t some in the fridge, I probably wouldn’t have used it this time either – which would have been a big mistake! It gave this very rich soup a nice depth of flavor that’s sometimes missing. Roasting the potatoes and leeks was a great idea and the next time I do it, I’d just toss some garlic cloves in the mix. If you were doing this in the summer and didn’t want to heat up your oven, grilling them would most likely be great! If you like a finer purée, use a blender, for a chunkier version the food processor is fine.

Accidental Locavore Roasted GarlicIn preparation for this I roasted 4 heads of garlic separately (cut 1/2″ off the tops, put in an oven-proof dish, sprinkle a little olive oil, cover with foil and roast at 400 degrees for an hour), not knowing how many I’d need (about 1 1/2 heads) to flavor but not overwhelm the leeks. Frank was wondering about adding bacon which would be fine, but not necessary – maybe as a garnish? This is great hot or cold, so depending on the season…

 

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Gazpacho, As if You Needed a Recipe

by Anne Maxfield on August 28, 2014

Accidental Locavore Gazpacho With CroutonsWhile it may not seem possible to have too many tomatoes, there are times (like now) when you might be facing a pile of very ripe tomatoes that would be a shame to waste. The Accidental Locavore ended up with five pounds from the CSA this week and knew there were a few more than I could (or should) comfortably use for salads. This being August, recipes for gazpacho are a dime a dozen, from Mark Bittman’s spread for the Times to an interesting one from Food & Wine that my friend Mary adapted for her blog. But gazpacho, like its summer cousin, pesto, really doesn’t need a recipe. It does need a blender or food processor and some great tomatoes (although there’s a hack for that too – see below). This is what I tossed together this morning:

  • 2 pounds tomatoes, cut into big chunks
  • 1 garlic clove (size depending on your love for garlic)
  • 2 slices of bread
  • ½ cucumber peeled and cut into chunks
  • ½ jalapeno, seeded
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Salt & pepper

Put the tomatoes, garlic, cucumber and jalapeno in the food processor and pulse until well chopped. Add the bread, olive oil and vinegar. Process until it’s just shy of your desired consistency. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Process to your desired consistency and chill for at least 30 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and top with your favorite garnishes, serve and enjoy!

My verdict: I always loved the gazpacho at City Bakery, mostly because you could mix in a whole host of garnishes: cilantro, croutons, chopped tomatillos, etc. It also allowed you to control the consistency, making it as smooth (fewer garnishes) or as chunky as you like. When you make it yourself, you can do that with or without the toppings. If you use a blender, you will get a finer blend; with the food processor it will always have a little more texture. I’m not a fan of green peppers, so I leave them out and really only added the jalapeno because it was left over from a batch of salsa (that may garnish the soup). Other great garnishes or add-ins could be avocado, bacon, some toasted pine nuts.

The hack for not-so-good tomatoes, I learned from Carla Hall. If you have pallid tomatoes, use more of whatever you have that’s tastier. So, if you have some good peppers or a nice cucumber, add more of them and just adjust the taste to suit yourself.

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