Soup’s on…

Soup’s on…the holiday menu.
Not just any soup.  But rustic seasonal solace.
…perhaps a creative appetizer soup at your holiday feast.
…possibly, a rustic nosh awaiting the holidays…or let the holidays wait
…and quite probably a very soup-er leftover idea.

Pureed Cranberry Soup: Elegant as a holiday appetizer, this swirl of deep rich burgundy, is both slightly sweet and slightly tart–or sweeten to taste.  It’s divine, warmed or chilled. Try serving in vintage sherbet cups. Dress with a crumble of bleu cheese and possibly a dash of sherry.

  • 3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, rinsed well and stemmed
  • 5 cups organic cherry juice or cran/cherry juice
  • 1 cup granulated sugar or sugar substitute
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
  • 1 tsp. almond extract, optional
  • 2 Tbs. cornstarch mixed with 2 Tbs. water
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat sour cream for garnish, optional
  • 10 small mint sprigs, optional
  • In a 3-quart saucepan, add cranberries, juice, sugar, cloves, cinnamon, pepper and almond extract. Bring to a boil over medium heat, cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer 15 minutes.
  • Purée. Strain into saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add cornstarch mixture; stir well. Add dried cranberries, and cook 5 minutes.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Smoky Bacon: Invigorated with the seasonal nuances of sweet roasted butternut squash and plump carrots. Its golden hue trimmed smoky-sweet crumbled bacon makes this a simple but savory holiday interlude. Serve with an artisanal loaf and chutney of your choice.

  • 1 large peeled butternut squash, chunked
  • 3 whole peeled carrots, chunked
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 lb. chopped raw bacon
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tbsp. black pepper

Toss squash and carrots with olive oil. Arrange in baking dish and roast uncovered in preheated 350°F oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender.

In large soup pot, cook bacon until crisp; remove bacon with slotted spoon and reserve for the soup trimming. Add onions to soup pot and sauté in bacon drippings over medium heat until tender, about 5 minutes. 
Add roasted vegetables and chicken broth to soup pot and bring to a boil; remove from heat. Working in several small batches, blend soup in food processor or blender until smooth. Return to soup pot, bring to a simmer and season with salt and pepper.
Serve  in pottery bowls dressed with crisp crumbled bacon.
Smoked Turkey, Navy Bean, and Kale Soup: An excellent holiday leftover idea.

1 smoked turkey leg
1 1/3 cups navy beans
1 celery stalk, diced petite
1 med. yellow onion, finely diced
1 carrot, thin dice
1 bunch kale, torn into bite-sized pieces
1 bay leaf
1 tsp garam-masala* or a pinch of curry
1/2 tsp cardamom
1/2 – 1 tsp cayenne, depending on your spice index
7 sprigs of thyme ( the whole bunch )
1 chicken bouillion
2 tbsp oil, (olive, canola, peanut…your choice )
6 – 8 cups water ( or to desired consistency)
salt and pepper * for an extra touch, a dash of liquid smoke.

Heat pot over medium, add oil. Once the oil is hot add the diced onions, carrots, and celery (the mirapoix) to the pot. Saute the mirapoix over medium heat until the onions have become translucent, stirring frequently. Next, add the bay leaf, thyme, garam masala, cardamom, cayenne, and beans to the the pot. Stir the mixture and saute for about 30 seconds to toast the spices in the oil. Add 6-8 cups of water, the smoked turkey leg, and chicken base. Stir the soup then turn the heat to high and bring it to a boil. Once the soup has reached a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer the soup for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. After an hour and a half, add the torn kale to the pot. Remove the turkey leg and add the meat if wished. If you don’t want the actual meat in the soup, that’s fine too. Just leave the leg in and continue to allow it to simmer with the rest of the soup. Allow the kale to cook in the soup for another 20 to 30 minutes.  Stir in wild rice or quinoa for a distinctive holiday porridge.

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This entry was posted in chefs, recipes, restaurants, seasonal, soups and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Soup’s on…

  1. Yes it is! These look great, thanks for sharing.

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