Archive for the ‘Soup’ Category

Portuguese Kale Soup

Christopher and I have tried a bunch of times to copy restaurant recipes that we love.  They always turn out just so-so.  But not this time!

Over the weekend we shared a bowl of Portuguese kale soup in P-Town that was incredible!  So, we dissected the soup and purchased all the ingredients.  We were so happy with the finished product.  A little spicy, full of veggies and perfect for fall.  I’m so proud we were finally able to copy a recipe and have it turn out just as well as the original!

1 coil Linguica, spicy Portuguese sausage (casing removed)
4C. Chopped kale
5 Yukon gold potatoes, cut into small dices
1 large Yellow onion
2 cloves Garlic, pressed
1 can Dark red kidney beans
3/4C. chopped Carrot
4C. Chicken stock
4C. Water
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large dutch oven, heat 2T. oil over medium-high heat.  Add crumbled linguica and cook 4 minutes.  Add onion and carrot and cook until onion is soft – about 5 minutes.  Add garlic during the last minute of sauteing.

Add stock, water, kidney beans and potatoes.  Simmer 10 minutes, until potatoes are just barely soft.  Add kale and cook another 10 minutes.  Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly.

This soup is great served immediately, but is even better if you make it ahead of time and re-heat.  Enjoy!

Husband Rating – 5 out of 5 – “Absolutely delicious!


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This weekend my wonderful husband and I celebrated our 2nd anniversary with a trip up to Rockport, MA.  It’s one of our favorite places to vacation – heck we love it so much that we got married there!

While we’re in Rockport we like taking the short drive into Gloucester at least once or twice because, frankly, the restaurants are better in Gloucester.  This time we tried a place called Latitude 43 and are SO glad we did!  The food was just wonderful.  I had the seafood paella and Christopher had swordfish.  Both were magnificent.  But, it was Christopher’s appetizer of fish stew that blew us both away.

So, when we came home we decided we wanted to try and replicate the dish.  Just going by the menu description (Fisherman’s Tomato Stew – Local fish, saffron tomato broth, fennel, potatoes, crostini and garlic aioli), we tried our best.

It was good, but not quite the same.  I think I’m going to write to Bon Appetit to see if they can dig up the recipe (they have a section of the magazine where you can write in to get your favorite restaurants recipes).  I’ll let you know if it is ever published!

1lb White fish (we used cod because that is what was available and fresh)
1/2lb. Raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, please (this was not in the original dish, but I had some around and it was a nice addition)
10-12 Fingerling potatoes, cut into coins
1/2C. Fennel, diced
1 Medium Yellow onion, diced
2T. Olive Oil
2 Cans whole tomatoes, no skin
6C. Chicken or fish broth/stock
1 Pinch Saffron
2 Cloves Garlic, pressed
Salt and Pepper

French Bread
Garlic Aioli (recipe follows)

Add olive oil to a large pot and warm over medium-high heat.  Add onions and fennel.  Cook 7-10 minutes until soft.  Add garlic during last minute of cooking.

In a small dish or glass, add saffron to a few T. warm water for 10 minutes.

Add stock/broth and tomatoes to onion mixture and buzz lightly with an immersion blender.  Add potatoes, saffron, salt, pepper and simmer 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.

Add fish, in 2″ pieces to the simmering pot and cook 4 minutes.  Add shrimp and cook another 2 minutes until they are just cooked through.

To serve, ladle into a bowl and top with toasted bread slice and garlic aioli.  Enjoy!

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Garlic Aioli Recipe
1C. Garlic Confit (see note)
6 Egg yolks
4T. Lemon juice
1-1/2t. Ssalt
1/4t. Cayenne pepper
2-1/2C. Oil, a combination of olive and canola or grapeseed oils

In the bowl of a food processor, combine garlic, egg yolks, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Blend until well mixed. With motor running, drizzle olive oil slowly through the feed tube into the egg mixture until the aioli thickens and becomes smooth. Makes 1 quart.

Note: To make garlic confit, peel and separate two heads of garlic. Put in a pan and cover with oil. Cook over low heat until garlic is soft, about 30 to 40 minutes.

– –

Husband Rating – 3 out of 5 – “Not quite the same as Lat 43, but a good try.”

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You know how when you go on vacation you have that one meal that sums up the whole vacation and reminds you of being there whenever you have it? Well, this is going to sound nutso, but for me this Ramen dish reminds me of Paris.  I know, I know!  So wierd!

Here’s the story – The apartment we stayed in in Paris was surrounded by Japanese restaurants (there were at least 8 within a 3-block radius), and while on vacation we both got sick, and for two of our 7 nights in Paris all we wanted was soup…so we went down to one of the Japanese restaurants and had Ramen bowls with spinach and downed enough Green Tea to kill whatever was attacking our travel-weary bodies.

So, tonight I decided to bring Paris to CT with these Shrimp and Spinach Noodle Bowls (I had shrimp to use up and figured this would be a good way to do so).

These were great – simple and so cozy on this unusually cold May day.

3 Packets, Ramen noodles (doesn’t matter what flavor, you’re not going to use the packet)
8C. Water
2T. Homemade Oriental Seasoning – recipe below (tastes just like the Oriental flavor packet that comes with Ramen, without the MSG or added salt)
1C. Fresh spinach
1/2lb. Shrimp (uncooked, thawed, de-veined and de-shelled, please)

Oriental Seasoning
2T. Onion powder
2T Ground ginger
2T. Garlic powder
2T. Black pepper
Salt, to taste

Boil water.  Add seasoning and noodles.  Cook 3 minutes.

Add shrimp to the water and boil another 45 seconds to 1 minute.

Add a 1/2C. of raw spinach to the bottom of each serving bowl.  Ladle broth, noodles and shrimp over the spinach and let wilt 1 minute.


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As previously mentioned, our office holds a Soup-Off competition every year.  This was my entry for this year.  I found the recipe on A Year of CrockPotting (although, I put the soup together on the stove top and reheated in the CrockPot – see her site for the full-on CrockPot directions).  This soup was delish!  The recipe doesn’t make all that much, so I tripled it and had just enough for my coworkers to sample.

2C.  Shredded cooked chicken
1/2 Yellow onion, chopped
3 Stalks celery, chopped
1/4C. Unsalted butter
1/4C. Flour
2C. Fat free milk (no higher content than 2%, or it will curdle)
3/4C. Chicken broth (low or no salt is best)
4oz. Velveeta cheese
1/4C. Hot wing sauce
1/2t. Celery salt
1/2t. Garlic salt
Blue cheese crumbles and celery sticks for garnish

Melt butter in a large pot.  Add celery and onion.  Sweat about 8 minutes.  Add flour and make a roux.  Cook just a few minutes (to get the flour taste out of the dish).

Add all remaining ingredients.  Heat through, making sure the cheese melts.

That’s it!

Personally, I think this soup tastes best if you make it a day ahead and reheat.  It lets the flavors meld together quite nicely.  Although, if you have to eat it right away, that’s OK too!

crockpotsI just had to share a pic of all of our crockpots lined up in the conference room.  I love my job!  🙂

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, I came in 2nd this year. Better luck next time.

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Smokey Black Bean Soup

Every winter my office holds their annual Soup Off.  A few people bring in crock pots of soup and all the employees taste and judge.  Last year I won the coveted “Golden Ladle Award” (a cheesy spray painted award that the winner gets to keep in his/her office for the year) with this spicy black bean soup.  I saw the recipe on Dave Lieberman’s show “Good Deal with Dave Lieberman” and made a few tweaks.  Enjoy!

10 Slices Bacon, finely chopped
2 Medium Onions, chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
6 Garlic Cloves, pressed
1 (14 1/2-ounce) Can Reduced-Sodium Chicken Broth
1 1/2C Canned Chopped Tomatoes
2T Ketchup
2t Worcestershire sauce
1T Chili Powder
1t Ground Cumin
4 (15 1/2-ounce) Cans Black Beans, drained but not rinsed
Kosher salt and Freshly ground black pepper
1 Bunch Cilantro
Juice of 1 lime
2C Small Pasta of your choice (I like elbows)
Scallions, Cheddar Cheese and/or Sour Cream for garnish

Put the bacon into a large heavy pot and place it over medium heat.  Cook until it starts to give up its fat, about 4 minutes.

Stir in the onions and cook, stirring, until they start to turn translucent, about 4 minutes.  Stir in the garlic and cook until you can smell it, about 1 minute.

Add the broth, tomatoes, ketchup, Worcestershire, cumin and chili powder.  Stir in the beans, turn the heat to high and bring to a boil.  Adjust the heat so the soup is bubbling gently and cook 10 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, pick off all the thick stems from the cilantro. Wash it and shake dry. Chop the cilantro coarsely and stir it into the soup when it has been simmering 10 minutes. Add pasta and cook until the soup is thickened, about 7 minutes (until the pasta is al dente).

Stir in the lime juice. Serve with the garnishes.

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