Soup Archive

Friday, January 4, 2008


goulash over egg noodles

If you’re like most people at the tail end of this frigid first week of January, you’re likely torn between wanting to “do good” for yourself by cooking healthy foods with your eye on the long-off prize of bathing suit season (no matter how improbable it seems as your fingertips numb after spending only half a block exposed) and wanting to “hibernate” with indulgent food that sticks to your ribs, promising to keep you warm and padded until spring comes, and sadly thereafter.


Fortunately, not every meal picks sides. And since I know you didn’t believe that we only ate a cucumber salad for dinner a few nights ago, it is clearly time to tell you about that evening’s other Austro-Hungarian dispatch: goulash.

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Wednesday, November 7, 2007

black bean pumpkin soup

pumpkin soup

I know this sounds like the tiniest of triumphs in a world of people who have respectable accomplishments to be proud of, but nonetheless, it brings me great pleasure to announce that I have found a pumpkin soup that meets my approval.

Yes, I know, who talks about pumpkin soup in November? It seems like strictly an October affair. Pumpkins crowd the markets, and the people gather round with an evil glint in their eyes, eager to carve them up and roast their innards, mwa-ha-ha. You can barely turn your head without finding another half dozen pumpkin recipes, and oh, I know, I’ve spread my share around.

Alex and I bought three smallish pumpkins to carve this year, but the weeks leading up to Halloween were chaotic and we never got to them. Feeling guilty that they were about to go to waste, I roasted and pureed one and a half of them (and stupidly deleted the pictures before, uh, downloading them from the camera), before deciding it was an absolutely excessive amount of work and entirely not worth it. I hear everyone goes through this same process once in their lives.

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Sunday, October 28, 2007

sweet potato and sausage soup

sweet potato and sausage soup

Because I am, in all likelihood, about seven years old on the inside but old enough on the outside to know that this might never change, I’m just going to admit from the start that the concept of sausage soup makes me giggle. It also sounds kind of gross, don’t you think? Sausage soup.Hee hee. In fact, when it appeared a few weeks ago as Epicurious’ Recipe of the Day, I sent the link to my husband who, also being seven or maybe seven and a half on the inside, would totally get a kick out of it. But then–and I hope that this doesn’t mean that he is growing up on me, because that just will not do–he actually said that it sounded good, and that we should make it for dinner.

mise en placechorizo

Well his taste buds–which cry for only tomatoes, salt, cured meats and chocolate–haven’t led us astray in the past, have they? Now that the weather has finally plodded into something resembling fall, soup season is officially on and what way to ease ourselves into it but with something hovering in the delicious middle-ground between broth and stew.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

red pepper soup

red pepper soup

I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time. You see, I’ve told you about a lot of soups–I mean, a lot of soups–but I haven’t gotten to share with you this awesome red pepper soup I plucked from the New York Times nearly two years ago because I started this site just a little bit past pepper season.

red bell pepper

So, for ten months, I have tap-tap-tapped my feet until peak peck-o-pepper-picking time came round again and I could tell you about what a find this soup really was. And yesterday, yesterday when I hadn’t planned to make dinner because I was tired and completely uninspired, on the way home it hit me that there is no more legitimate time of year to buy pepper than the present, and suddenly I was enticed into cooking again. So, I swung into Garden of Eden–which by the way, charges the same atrocious prices for bell peppers whether they’re in season or not–got the two ingredients I didn’t already have and burst into the apartment with a “Ta-da!” and a “Guess what!” and a “I finally get to make the red pepper soup tonight!”

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Thursday, January 4, 2007

balthazar’s cream of mushroom soup

balthazar cream of mushroom soup

A couple months ago, I briefly mentioned making a wild mushroom soup from Gourmet magazine that was, you know, good, but also, eh. But shame on me, really, because last year we found the perfect, best-ever, fail-proof, tastiest recipe so why did I fall for the shiny new thing? Isn’t that the point of all this trial-and-error, anyway? I’m always trying to catalogue Recipes That Work, also called Recipes to Share you know, the ones that you try and you think “This is it. This is everything I have ever wanted from a [insert beloved grub here],” even if yes, I know, most people probably do not share my fanaticism about beloved grub. Lemon cake? Done. Banana bread? Found that too. Easy-peasy rustic loaf? Yup, and hooray for that. Chocolate cookies so good, it may bring tears to your eyes? That’s for tomorrow, because I am a tease, and also because I think about them again, I might eat five. Best-ever mushroom soup? I will never doubt you again.

2 lbs, 1 oz of mushrooms

What was missing from the bland mushroom soup was bulk. So many varied soup recipes come down to a similar process: a sauté of onions, leeks or garlic and herbs, a pile of vegetables simmered in stock until soft, then pureed and topped with cream, grated cheese or a splash of booze or if you’re super-lucky, all three. But if you want to make it taste like more than watery vegetables, you’re going to need some volume. Balthazar’s cream of mushroom soup has over two pounds of sliced mushrooms with a relatively small volume of broth coaxing it gently into soup form — there’s nothing more worthy of your spoon. You might, ahem, even determine that it tastes so good, that no, you will not share it and will instead eat it standing over the pot, hungry husbands be damned, even when they catch your selfishness on film. But then again maybe not, as you’re probably a nicer person than me. One can only hope.

will not share

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