Friday, January 9, 2009

Comfort Soups

Some wonderful, nourishing soups to brighten up these dreary winter days...

notes
- cook and freeze extra portions of the roasted butternut squash to use later
- if freezing the soup, don't add the whipping cream (it tends to separate after freezing
- if using a blender instead of a food mill, remember to only fill up the blender to half full, remove the top cylinder and then put a tea towel over the hole (prevents burns and scalds)
- another combo to try in substitution would be roasted sweet potato for the squash, or apple for the pear... voila! now you have 4 soup recipes (adjust seasonings to taste)
- serve a chilled glass of whatever dry white wine you chose to cook with to accompany the soup (but don't go too high-end if it is a very special wine, don't cook with it)

(from my Vegetarian Cooking course)

Roasted Butternut Squash and Pear Soup

- 1 butternut squash (about 2 - 2.5 lbs, halved lengthwise, seeds removed
- 1 Tbsp of olive oil, divided
- 1 medium cooking onion, diced
- 3 Bosc pears, peeled, pitted and cut in 1/2" chunks
- 2 x 946 ml cartons of Imagine brand "No Chicken" stock
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 tsp. fenugreek powder (or mild curry powder)
- 5 Tbsp whipping cream
- salt and pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

  2. Lightly brush both sides of cut Butternut squash with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Place on a non-sticking baking sheet, cut side down and roast in the oven for about 40 minutes or until tender. Remove from oven and when cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh from shell, put in bowl and set aside

  3. In a large stockpot heat remaining Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, pears and sweat for ten minutes (until soft but not brown). Increase heat to high and add the stock, white wine, fenugreek and the roasted butternut squash. Reduce heat to low and simmer 20-30 minutes.

  4. Pass through food mill on the finest setting. Return to heat and stir in whipping cream, if using. Adjust seasoning, garnish with chives and serve.


Creamy Tofu Pea Soup with Crispy Shallots

Crispy Shallots
6 shallots
Light vegetable or peanut oil, for frying

Soup
2 tbsp light vegetable oil
1 cup minced shallots
¾ tsp garlic puree
8 oz new potatoes, diced
1 x 946 ml vegetable stock
¼ tsp salt
3 cups frozen baby peas
3 tbsp minced fresh parsley
4 oz silken tofu
salt and white pepper to taste

Garnish
Crispy Shallots
Minced fresh parsley


1. Make the Crispy Shallots: Slice the shallots crosswise into very thin rings. Heat the vegetable oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until it begins to lightly bubble; add the shallots and fry until they are browned, a minute or two. Stir the shallots occasionally while they are cooking to make sure they brown evenly. Remove from oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle lightly with salt, if desired.

2. Make the Creamy Tofu Pea Soup: Sweat garlic and shallots in oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add potatoes, “No Chicken” stock and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, 8-10 minutes. Add baby peas and parsley and cook another 2-3 minutes. Puree in a blender with tofu. Return soup to pot and heat through. If you desire a thinner consistency, add a bit more stock or water. Adjust season to taste with salt and white pepper.

3. To Serve: Ladle soup in bowl and garnish with crispy shallots and minced fresh parsley.


- Recipes Sara Harrel, The Veg Company

1 comment:

annika said...

Myself and Cora, my 14 year old daughter, made the butternut squash soup today, and we really enjoyed the taste of it. The recipe was simple enough for my daughter to follow and it was enough soup for 1 plate each (5 of us) and just as much in the fridge for "left over". We will definately make this again, but will double the recipe next time.