Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cooking My Way: NO SOUP FOR YOU!

Just kidding! In case you're wondering about the title of my post, I'm referencing one of my favorite Seinfeld episodes. The owner/chef at the soup shop in town is referred to as "The Soup Nazi."  He serves the best soup in town but if you want it you have to follow his orders to get it. There is certain protocol that you must follow while in his shop. If you don't, he yells, "No soup for you!" and you are out of luck.

Thankfully, I am NOT "The Soup Nazi" and on this recipe Wednesday, I am going to share with you two of my favorite and healthy soup recipes. Sadly, I do not have any pictures of either soup so you'll just have to take my word for it. Both recipes come from my granddaddy Strickland who I still believe should have opened a restaurant!

Tomato Basil Soup (Probably my favorite soup EVER)

4 tbs of butter (you can substitute evoo or do half butter and half evoo. I use the whipped version of the Smart Balanced Low-Sodium butter.)
2 cups onion, finely diced
1 cup celery, finely diced
1 cup carrots, finely diced
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
1 cup of heavy cream (I believe that Land of Lakes makes a fat free heavy cream)
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
Salt and pepper to taste
Pinch of sugar
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil, divided - use 1/2 in soup and other 1/2 to garnish.

In a stock pot or dutch oven over medium heat, melt the butter. Add onions, celery, and carrots and saute 10-15 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add flour and cook and additional 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Add tomatoes, cream, and broth and bring to a light simmer for 30 minutes. Taste and season with salt, pepper, and sugar if desired. Remove from heat and add 1/3 cup of basil. Use submersion blender to combine (you can also do this in batches in a regular blender). Serve immediately. Garnish with remaining basil.

Cauliflower Soup

1 head of cauliflower, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 limb of celery, chopped
4 cups of low sodium chicken broth
pepper to taste
1 can of fat free evaporated milk

In a stock pot saute onion and celery in a little evoo, about 5-6 minutes until tender. Add chopped cauliflower, chicken broth, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover with lid. Simmer for 20 minutes or until cauliflower is tender. Remove from heat and add evaporated milk. Blend until smooth with a submersion blender. *Disclaimer* This is a fairly thin soup so more than likely you'll want to eat it as a side. We like grilled chicken or sandwiches with it.

OK. I know that I said I was going to give you two of my favorite soup recipes but I'll give you one more as a little bonus! :)

I was never a big soup eater growing up. I detested vegetable soup which was a common dish in our house during the winter months. There were only two soups that I actually liked and both were made by my granddaddy Strickland. The first was his homemade chicken noodle soup (I'll give you guys this recipe later but I don't have it on hand right now without spending forever looking for my missing recipe book. Have I ever mentioned how much I hate moving? Ha!) The other was his split pea soup. It was probably my favorite as a kid and he didn't make it often. Back then, before he developed diabetes and became more health conscious, it wasn't very healthy considering it had ham hock in it! Ha ha! But like many of his other "famous" recipes, he tweaked them to make them healthier but no less yummy. It's funny how all of my favorite soups were/are made by him. Most of the men in my family can attest to their love of cooking and their skill at it because of him. Until I was about 15 or so, he worked for the Georgia State Prison. He taught inmates how to build things. He made it home early in the afternoons before my grandma did so he cooked supper almost every night. We ate with them for lunch on Saturday's and even on the weekend, he was the primary cook. I always look forward to going home and eating with my grandparent's. You never know what he's going to make! So without further ado, here is the split pea soup recipe...

Split Pea Soup

1 small onion, chopped
1 1lb bag of split peas
Pepper to taste
2 packs of ham flavored Goya
5 cups of water
1 can fat free evaporated milk

Saute onion in a bit of evoo. Add peas, Goya, water, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Remove from heat and add milk. Blend with submersion blender.

For all three recipes you need a submersion blender. You can blend in batches in a regular blender but it's a pain. Depending on what brand you buy, submersion blenders aren't too expensive and it's a great tool to have.

Hope you enjoy these soups! I am now a soup lover and I don't care what time of year it is, summer or winter, I'll be eating soup! :)

Peace, Love, and Healthy Living,


1 comment:

  1. I'm going to have to try the tomato recipe. I love tomato soup, courtesy of my dad.