Five-Spice Beet Soup

Beetsoup Five Spice Beet Soup

Beet Soup

 

This soup has been on my to-do list since last summer/fall when I had a few beets in the garden. I wish I had tried it sooner because this soup is so easy and so good. We’ll be eating a lot of it if the beets behave like they did last summer. They would come in kinda slowly, a few at a time and I was frustrated because I didn’t know what to do with a meager haul of four 2-inch beets. Now I do, and so do you!

It’s striking soup too, because beets are such a vibrant color. This soup would also be good for an Easter meal. I love bright happy colors right now, they remind me that the days are getting longer, the ground is getting warmer and soon, it will be time to start planting again.  The five-spice also adds a nice warm, earthy favor that perfectly compliments the beets.

Five-Spice Beet Soup from Bon Appetit 2009
Prep: 35 minutes 4 Servings

Ingredients
4 2- to 2 1/2-inch-diameter beets, scrubbed, trimmed, unpeeled, each cut into 6 wedges (about 3 1/2 cups)
3 cups vegetable broth, divided
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium-size red onion, thinly sliced (2 cups)
1 celery stalk with leaves, stalk chopped, leaves sliced
2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon (or more) Chinese five-spice powder*
Sour cream or plain yogurt

Preparation
1. Place beet wedges in 4-cup glass measuring cup. Add 2 cups broth; cover with paper plate and microwave on high until tender, about 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, heat oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and chopped celery stalk; cover and cook until almost tender and translucent, stirring often, about 12 minutes.

3. Add beet mixture and 1 cup broth to onion mixture; cover and simmer 4 minutes. Mix in ginger and 1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder. Transfer to blender; cover and puree. Season soup to taste with salt, pepper, and additional five-spice powder, if desired; rewarm if necessary. Ladle soup into 4 bowls. Top with dollops of sour cream and dill (if you want)

*A spice blend available in the spice section of most supermarkets.

pin it button Five Spice Beet Soup

Garbanzo Bean Soup

GarbanzoBeanSoup Garbanzo Bean Soup

 

First, let’s take a second to just say the word Garbanzo. Garbanzo. This word brings a smile to my face before I even start making this recipe. I don’t know why I ever called these little legumes “chickpeas.” That is also a cute word, but not nearly as fun to say. Rose kind of growls this word out. I don’t think she knows what she is trying to say, but she likes the sound of Grrrrr-banzo, better than chickpea.

Anyway, this soup is delicious and pretty quick to make! I modified the original recipe a bit, because I don’t love leeks in soup and I wanted to add a little more spice. When I served it last week, Nick thought it would be even better with a little pasta. The next night I boiled some pasta and he was right. If you plan to add pasta, then cook that separately and add it as you go. The pasta will get really mushy in any left over soup if you just boil it all together.

Garbanzo Bean Soup—Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 zucchinis, diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 14 oz cans diced tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
1-2 tsp of Aleppo pepper or chili flakes
1 tsp smoked paprika
3 ¾ C vegetable stock
1 14oz can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
8 oz spinach (this can be frozen or fresh)
salt and pepper

1. Heat the oil in large pot, add leeks and zucchini and cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

2. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant.

3. Add the tomato paste, spices, diced tomatoes, stock and garbanzo beans. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

4. Shred the spinach finely, add to the soup and cook for 2 minutes. Season to taste.

5. If you want pasta, add it to the dish as you serve the soup. Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Or this can be a vegan dish if you leave out the cheese.

 

pin it button Garbanzo Bean Soup

Carrot Soup with Orange And Tarragon

CarrotSoup Carrot Soup with Orange And Tarragon

Carrot Soup with Orange and tarragon

The past week was stressful. Rose had a stomach virus that kept her home from the babysitter all week. As a result, Nick and I were scrambling just to keep our heads above water. And to top things off, I had to report for jury duty on Friday. In the end, I didn’t get selected and I did not take it personally (just like the judge in the video said.) But by the time I got home, Nick was exhausted from taking care of a whiny baby, I was exhausted from listening to a bunch of whiny adults and we were all starving.
I didn’t have a plan, but then I remembered a recipe I saw in Bon Appetit a long time ago and it was perfect. We had everything we needed in the house and it was fast– Carrot Soup with Orange and Tarragon. Rose loved it, Nick loved it and we were all happy. It was a nice respite from the chaos of the week, even though it only lasted as long as the pot of soup…
Carrot Soup with Orange and Tarragon

1 tablespoon butter
1 1-pound bag carrots
3/4 cup chopped onion
3 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon brandy
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
Fresh tarragon sprigs

Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add carrots and onion; sauté until onion is soft, about 8 minutes. Add broth; cover and bring to boil. Reduce heat, uncover, and simmer until carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.

Working in batches, puree soup in blender until very smooth. Return soup to pot. Stir in orange juice, brandy, and chopped tarragon. Simmer 5 minutes for flavors to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish soup with tarragon sprigs and serve.

pin it button Carrot Soup with Orange And Tarragon

Asparagus, Leek and Potato Soup

asparagusoup 614x410 Asparagus, Leek and Potato Soup

The different shades of green that announce the coming of spring have inspired several of my recipe choices over the last few days. The days are growing longer, the temperature keeps going up and people are returning to the streets of the city. Every spring I find it surprising how many people actually live in my neighborhood because over the winter people dart in and out of their homes as little as possible. The weather gets nice and then I remember that there are millions of people in the city, not just the two of us. Anyway, one of my favorite spring vegetables is asparagus. It has such a delicate flavor and is a beautiful green. I have been buying loads of it lately and can’t wait until the farmers markets have it. My favorites are asparagus and peas, but more about peas later. For today, we’ll focus on the asparagus.

Kathy and Martin had me over for dinner a few weeks ago and they had made an asparagus soup that was quite tasty. I had several bunches of it home so I decided to make a batch for us too! I found this version of the recipe online. The recipe was great as it is written. I used white pepper in the soup to keep it smooth and uniform in color. One other change was with the presentation. When dicing the asparagus for the soup, cut the tops off the asparagus set them aside. Use the stems in the soup and then just before serving, steam the asparagus tops for about 5 minutes (or until tender) then garnish the soup with them. It just makes it a little prettier and the tops of the asparagus are the most delicious part anyway so it’s nice to save for last.

I hope you enjoy the soup and lots more posts to come this week! With Easter, the dinner party, and a general flurry of cooking, I have about 10 recipes/stories to post!

Asparagus, Leek and Potato Soup

This makes around ten 1 cup servings and would go well with the crackers found in this post.

Ingredients

3 lbs. fresh asparagus

2 large leeks

1 medium onion, finely chopped

3 Tbsp. butter

2-3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into half inch cubes

3 cups vegetable stock

1 cup light cream or milk

salt and pepper to taste

chopped chives for garnish

Directions

Trim leeks, rinse well and coarsely chop them.

Sautee leeks and onions in butter until almost tender in a medium pot.  Add potatoes, asparagus and vegetable stock.  Simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

In small batches, puree the mixture until smooth.  Return mixture to the saucepan and add cream and heat just to the boiling point. While watching the main pot, steam the asparagus tips in another small saucepan with a steamer insert. When these are tender,  season the soup to taste and serve topped with chives and asparagus tops.

pin it button Asparagus, Leek and Potato Soup

Two winter soups

BeanSoup 03 614x410 Two winter soups

Vegetable Soup

As some of you guys might know, I go through periods of time where I worry that I’m not getting enough protein, enough, fruit, enough veggies, enough calcium/dairy, etc. This past week, I got a little concerned that I wasn’t getting enough vegetables. I know that sounds crazy because I’m a vegetarian, but I felt like I was mostly eating oats, cornmeal, wheat, all kinds of delicious grains, but they lacked for veggie content, obviously. I always struggle in the winter to make dishes that have a variety of vegetables and that can be served multiple times in a week. After surveying the contents of the frig and deep freeze I made two awesome soups from stuff we had on hand! The first one was a mushroom rice soup and the second was a tomato based vegetable soup that featured leftovers from the noodle party.

The beautiful thing about both the soups was there wasn’t really a recipe, just throwing stuff in until it tasted right, but here is a list of ingredients and the order I added them so you can use it as a jumping off point for your own soups!

WildriceSoup 02 614x410 Two winter soups

Mushroom Rice Soup

Mushroom Rice Soup – Makes 6-8 servings and takes about an hour to an hour and a half depending on how fast you chop your vegetables and how soft you like your rice.

Onion

Garlic

½-1 c rice mix (wildrice and white—depends on how much soup you want or how thick)

3 or 4 carrots

2-3 parsnips

1-2 C mushrooms

3-4 C veggie broth

4 stalks of celery

herbs: celery salt, white pepper, black pepper, and a little red chili

Start by sautéeing the onions and garlic in butter until fragrant then add the carrots, parsnips, mushrooms and celery. After a few minutes add the broth and the rice. Simmer over low heat until the rice is tender.

If the broth gets soaked up by the rice just add more and adjust your spices. Peas probably would have been good in this too, but I didn’t have any in the frig.

Vegetable Soup –This made about 12 servings and took about 2 hours with prep and cook time.

5 bags of tomato puree (about 10 cups)

Onion

Garlic

3 or 4 carrots

2-3 parsnips

4 stalks of celery

1-1 1/2 Cups Kidney Beans

1-1 ½ Cups Chick Peas

2 Cups corn

2 Cups of cooked noodles

For Seasoning

Basil

Marjoram

Oregano

Onion powder

Garlic powder

Rosemary

Thyme

If you are using canned beans just throw them in the soup, but if you are using dried beans, make sure they are mostly cooked before throwing them in with the rest of the soup or you will over cook the vegetables while you try to get the beans to soften up.

Start by sautéeing  the onions, garlic, carrots, celery and parsnips. Then add the tomato puree. Let that simmer for awhile and then add the beans, chickpeas, corn and noodles. Simmer until all the flavors have come together, about an hour.

pin it button Two winter soups

Vegetarian Chili

MG 8052 614x410 Vegetarian Chili

Vegetarian Chili with sweet cornbread

I don’t really know where we got the base recipe for this chili, but over the years (we started making it in college) we have changed it so much that I feel comfortable saying this is our chili recipe. We make it at least twice each winter. Once for Christmas Eve dinner and again during the long Chicago winter. We usually double the batch since it is easy to make, freezes well and reheats perfectly! When you reheat it, just add a little water because it tends to get thick. This chili, as you can see in the photo, is quite substantial. Add more water or beer if you like soupier chili.

Vegetarian Chili— My favorite winter dish!

3 large cloves of garlic, minced

1 large onion, chopped

1 Tbsp of oil

2 14 ½ ounce cans of chili style chunky tomatoes

1 15 ½ ounce can of each: red kidney beans, pinto beans, and white kidney beans (if you are using dried beans use about ½ cup of each of the beans.

1 ½ C of corn

1-1/2 C TVP

1 8oz can of beer (I like PBR)

1 8oz can tomato sauce

1 C water

1 Tbsp chili powder

1 Tbsp dijon mustard

1 Tbsp oregano (crushed)

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp black pepper

hot sauce of your choice

Saute the onions for about 4-5 minutes, add the garlic and sauté for another 1-2 minutes. Stir in the un-drained tomatoes, beer, tomato sauce,  water, spices and hot sauce. Let these simmer for a little bit, then add the beans and TVP. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 30-60 minutes.

That’s it! The key to good chili is to make it a day or two ahead of when you want to eat it. We made our chili on the 23rd for Christmas eve and when you reheat, taste it because the beans and TVP will soak up all the spices and it will likely need more. We made one really mild pot for our parents and we probably tripled the spices above in the pot for us. It can be as spicy or as mild as you like, just adjust the 6 spices to your taste. Enjoy! Oh and if you aren’t a vegan make sure you but some shredded cheese on top! We served the chili with sweet corn bread. I found the recipe online and adjusted the sugar to a reasonable level. The recipe follows, but I didn’t take any pictures of it because we all ate it too fast.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spray or lightly grease a 9 inch pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder. Stir in egg, milk and vegetable oil until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
MG 8051 614x410 Vegetarian Chili

Christmas Eve Spread

This is what we ate before we went to mass. The jellies are half home-made, and the crackers are from a previous post, the cookies on the right are my mother-in-laws. Very tiny and very delicious. I hope everyone had a great New Year’s celebration and I hope that 2010 is great for everyone!

pin it button Vegetarian Chili

Potato Leek Soup with Homemade Crackers

MG 5334 614x410 Potato Leek Soup with Homemade Crackers

Potato leek soup with Homemade Crackers

I’m sure all of you have noticed the frequency of my posts has dropped off a bit this month. It is not for lack of cooking, but lack of time to photograph it. I’m a little disappointed with myself on that front, so I’m trying to fix that. And we the holidays approaching I will certainly be in the kitchen more often.

To start: I have not, to my knowledge, used a Julia Child’s recipe before. But when I did a quick search for potato leek soup recipes, this one kept coming up! I can’t tell you how happy I was with both the results and the ingredient list. This soup is further evidence of how simply food can be cooked if you start with quality ingredients. I added corn to the soup when I made it this time, not because the recipe needs it, but because I had a bunch of leftover corn that needed to be used. It was a nice addition, but optional to the point that I didn’t put it in the recipe.

The simplicity of the soup was compliments by little homemade crackers I made while the vegetables were simmering. The crackers are equally easy and do not contain trans fats, high fructose corn syrup or any other crazy stuff. AND they taste great. Some would say better than store-bought, I just say different. These little guys will be in every bowl of soup I make this winter.

Julia Child’s Potato Leek Soup

Ingredients
3-4 cups of diced peeled potatoes (1 lb.)
3 cups thinly sliced leeks, including the tender greens
2 quarts water
1 Tablespoon salt
6 tablespoons heavy cream or 3 tablespoons softened butter
3 tablespoons minced chives or parsley
Then:

1.  Simmer vegetables, salt, and water together, partially covered for 40-50 minutes in a 3-4 quart saucepan.

2. Mash the vegetables into the soup with a fork as you adjust salt and pepper.

3. When ready to serve, bring soup back to simmering. Then off the heat, stir in the cream or butter (if you want) and top with chopped chives or parsley.

Makes 2 quarts of soup for 6-8 servings.

Now the Crackers. So good, so easy.

Simple Crackers

2 Cups flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

2/3 Cup warm water

1/3 cup olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400.

  1. Lightly grease two large cookie sheets. Combine the dry ingredients, and then stir in the water, oil and mix until a smooth dough forms.
  2. Divide the dough in half and flatten each half on a cookie sheet. Use a small rolling pin or even your fingers for a rustic, uneven look. Once the dough is spread thin, use a sharp knife or a pizza cutter to cut the dough into squares. The elasticity in the dough will make the crackers shrink slightly and pull away from each other; this makes them easy to bake without sticking together.
  3. Brush lightly with olive oil.
  4. Sprinkle with the topping of your choice. I used chopped rosemary, sea salt, garlic, onion powder, fennel and cumin.

Bake for 10-12 minutes until the crackers are golden and crispy.

Tomorrow will feature another Thanksgiving recipe.

pin it button Potato Leek Soup with Homemade Crackers

Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup

MG 3868 614x410 Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup

Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup

Apparently, this has been one of the wettest/coldest Octobers in 84 years. So Nick and I have been dipping into our soup recipes a little early this year. This soup, like all the soups I post about, is more of a stew. I’m not sure how this always happens, I think it has something to do with the blended potatoes, but it does. I’m not really complaining though, because I like thick soups. When I was younger and my mom would serve us Campbell’s chicken noodle soup and I would add enough crackers so there would be very little actual broth left. Now that I cook for myself, I just add less water or stock, which is a little more calorie friendly than dumping several dozen crackers into your soup.

This soup/stew offeres everything you want in a winter stew. The ingredients are simple, but compliment each other very well, it is seasonal and the soyrizo (or Chorizo if you eat meat) adds a depth that most veggie soups don’t have. Normally, bread would be a good compliment to soup, but this Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup is so thick, we found that a salad and an array of pickles was more fitting as a side.

Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup

yield: Makes about 10 cups, serving 8 to 10

Ingredients
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped onions
  • 3/4 cup sliced carrots
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 pound russet (baking) potatoes (about 2 large)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 3/4 pound soyrizo
  • 3/4 pound kale, stems discarded and the leaves washed well, spun dry, and shredded thin (about 8 cups packed)
  • 1 pound red potatoes
Preparation

In a kettle cook the garlic, the onions, and the carrot in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until the vegetables are softened. Add the potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces, the broth, and 4 cups water, bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer the mixture, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. While the potatoes are cooking, in a skillet cook the soyrizo over moderate heat, stirring, until it is browned lightly. Set aside a little soyrizo so that it can be used as a garnish. Then, with the slotted spoon transfer 1/2 the cooked potatoes to a blender, add about 1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid and purée the mixture until it is smooth. Don’t worry if you get some of the carrots and onions into the mix too. Stir the purée into the broth mixture, add the soyrizo, the kale, and salt and pepper to taste, and simmer the soup, covered, for 10 minutes.

pin it button Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup

Creole Corn Bisque

Cornmuffin 614x410 Creole Corn Bisque

Creole Corn Bisque with Corn Muffin

This post contains three recipes: Corniest Corn Muffins, Creole Corn Soup and Smoky Tomato Butter. It’s a bit long I know, but worth the effort if you try any or all of the recipes.

On Friday, when I opened the refrigerator door I was greeted by 8 ears of corn, still in their husks, which had been waiting for my attention since last Sunday. It was time to do something with the stuff before it went bad. This corn is incredibly sweet and fresh. I was eating it raw a couple weeks ago because it was so sweet and tender. This time though, I wanted to make something a little more complicated. This soup is fairly simple to make and is quite good, but what really makes it taste wonderful is the Smokey Tomato Butter. I had enough corn left over from the soup to make Dorie Greenspan’s Corniest Corn Muffins. All three recipes follow. Tonight is the Tomato Festival dinner party, so those photos will be posted soon!

Creole Corn Soup

I’m not sure where I got this recipe, it was in my files and so I made it. If you find a source for it, let me know!

1 1/2 tablespoon corn oil
1 cup yellow chopped onion
1 1/4 cup carrots, chopped
1 1/2 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup dry sherry – I used some plum brandy and it worked out nicely.
3 cups corn kernels
2 bay leaf
2 quarts vegetable stock
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tsps marjoram,

¼-1/2 tsp red crushed pepper flakes

Directions:

Heat oil in a stockpot and sauté onion, carrot and celery until soft. Add sherry and reduce by 1/2. Add corn and bay leaf. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are very tender.

Puree soup in a blender or food processor and return to clean stockpot. Add cream, salt and pepper. Return to stove, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Let cool and add tarragon. Garnish hot soup with 1 tsp of smoked tomato butter and dehydrated sweet corn.

Smokey Tomato Butter

This one has a source, but I’m hesitating on posting it because it is from a book I want to give as a gift to someone who reads the blog. Sorry!


1 pound ripe plum tomatoes

3 large cloves garlic; unpeeled

1 ½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

4 scallions, white and tender pale green parts, finely sliced

2 sticks of unsalted butter

juice of one lime

½-1 tsp smoked paprika

Sea salt

Pre-heat the oven to 475 then place the tomatoes in a single layer in a baking dish and roast, turning them occasionally until the skins are blackened and the flesh is soft, 20-25 minutes. Let cool, then peel and discard the blackened skins. Halve the tomatoes and scoop out and discard the seeds.

While your tomatoes are roasting, over medium-high heat in a dry skillet, toast the garlic cloves for 10-15 minutes, until the skins are blackened. Let cool, peel and discard the skin.

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the scallions and cook gently for about 4 minutes, or until they are tender and translucent. Add the tomatoes and garlic and cook over high heat for 3-5 minutes, or until any excess juices have simmered off and the mixture looks thick. Stir often to prevent scorching. Cool.

Transfer the tomato mixture to a food processor. Add half the butter, the lime juice, ¼ tsp paprika, and ½ tsp sea salt. Process briefly to combine, then add the remaining butter and process until you have a smooth mixture. Taste and add additional paprika and salt if necessary.

Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or until the butter mixture is firm enough to handle.

Corniest Corn Muffins

- makes 12 muffins -
Adapted from Baking From My Home To Yours

Ingredients

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
6 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg (optional)
1 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 tablespoons corn oil
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 cup corn kernels (add up to 1/3 cup more if you’d like), fresh, frozen or canned (in which case they should be drained and patted dry)

Procedure

Getting ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter or spray the 12 muffin molds in a regular-size muffin tin, or fit the molds with paper muffin cups.

Working in a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. In a large glass measuring cup with a spout or in another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, melted butter, oil, egg and yolk. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and, with the whisk or a rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. Don’t worry about being thorough – the batter will be lumpy and that’s just the way it should be. Stir in the corn kernels. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin molds.

Slide the pan into the oven and bake 15 to 18 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a knife inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Pull the pan from the oven and carefully lift each muffin out of its mold and onto a rack to cool.

Serving: The muffins are great warm or at room temperature and particularly great split, toasted and slathered with butter or jam or both (if they’re not in breadbasket at dinner, that is).

Storing: Like all muffins, these are best eaten the day they are made. If you want to keep them, it’s best to wrap them airtight and pop them into the freezer, where they’ll keep for about a month; re-warm in a 300°F oven, if you’d like, or split them and toast them—do that and they’ll be that much more delicious with butter.

pin it button Creole Corn Bisque

Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup –Meggyleves

Cherry Borsht 004 614x410 Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup –Meggyleves

Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup

I’m not sure if you have noticed, but this year’s cherry crop has been abundant and cheap. Where a pound of red Bing cherries would have cost you $5-6 last year, this year, they are $2.99. If you paid $7-8 for Rainer cherries last year, they are about $5.00 this year.

There was a story on Weekend Edition about why this is the case: All the cherries in Washington and Oregon bloomed prolifically, at the same time and the weather was perfect for producing ripe, plump, perfect little cherries. The story can be found here if you want to listen. While over abundance, ironically, is a bad thing for farmers, since it drives prices down, it is a beautiful occasion for the rest of us.

I have been taking full advantage of the abundance this year. There hasn’t been a week this summer when we didn’t have cherries in our refrigerator either from the farmers’ markets or from the grocery store. This soup has been one of my favorite cherries experiments to date. It is a chilled cherry soup. We used a combination of sour cherries and sweet cherries. Nick thought the cherry soup was too sweet, but I really enjoyed it and it was a surprising dessert. As a main course? Maybe not; unless you are serving some salty, savory cheese and crackers along with it. Now without further delay, the recipe for the wonderful cherry soup!

Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup –Meggyleves

This recipe is from Saveur Magazine.

2 24oz jars of pitted sour cherries (recipes prefers Morellos) with their juice
OR you can use 1 ¾ lbs of fresh bing cherries, pitted and stemmed, or 1 ½ lbs of frozen bing cherries with 2 ¾ cups sour or regular cherry juice
½ tsp Kosher salt
1 cinnamon stick
1 ½ inch thick slice of lemon
1 8 0z container sour cream

Add the cherries, whichever ones you choose, to a 4 quart saucepan. Add salt, cinnamon stick, and lemon. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until the cherries are soft, about 5 minutes

In a small bowl, whisk together sour cream and ¼ cup of hot cherry liquid from pan. Remove pan from heat, stir in sour cream mixture. Chill then enjoy your chilled cherry soup!

Tomorrow: More cherries. This time, preserved so you can enjoy the taste of summer during the dead of winter.

pixel Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup –Meggyleves
pin it button Hungarian Chilled Cherry Soup –Meggyleves