All posts filed under: Soups

Italian Wedding Soup with Kale

  Winter, why oh why won’t you go away and come again some other day?  It’s been a brutal few months, oh so cold and covered in snow.  With another forecast in sight for MORE snow, what’s a girl to do but warm up her tummy.  Nothing ever seems more cozy to me than a hot bowl of soup.  I’ve been rotating between this recipe for Italian Wedding Soup with Kale and a super easy Split Pea with Ham Soup (might post on that later) all Winter.  My version of Italian Wedding Soup sometimes contains escarole and sometimes kale.  When using escarole, I chop up the tough dark green leaf tips to use in the soup and save the heart/lighter green leaves to be served raw in a salad.  To keep this super fast, I purchase pre-made teeny meatballs from our local Italian speciality foods market.  If you can’t find those, you can easily make your own.  Just Google it–or do your favorite mix of ground pork, dark meat turkey, or beef with egg, grated …

Split Pea Soup

This is a soup I’ve made every year since I moved to New York.  I don’t know if its the chill in the air that calls me to make it or the autumn craving for earthy goodness, but either way, this soup has been a wonderful standby.  I like to make a big pot, spooning individual servings into my Tupperware for lunch all week and then freezing the rest.  This version is made with ham hocks (vs. bacon as you often see,) which gives it all of its character.  I suppose you could try it without the ham hocks, but don’t yell at me if it doesn’t wow you. The process for making this soup couldn’t be simpler.  In some butter in a large pot, I added the chopped celery, carrot, and onion until softened. Next I placed the ham hocks on their vegetable bed and added the marjoram.  A quick minute in the pot, and then I added the dried split peas and water.  Yes, water.  Not chicken or vegetable stock.  Trust me: the …

White Bean, Bacon, and Pork Soup with Thyme

  When life gives you leftover pork chops, make this wonderfully silky and rich soup.  I have actually made this soup twice: once with the addition of leftover pork chops and once with the recipe as is (except without carrots as I didn’t have any on hand.)  Both had wonderful results.  But the addition of leftover pork chops (or any leftover pork you have) adds another dimension of flavor and umph.  The soup becomes a meal in itself.  I ended up topping each bowl of soup with some grated parmesan which added even more richness and bite.  Super delicious. I started by soaking the beans overnight.  Please don’t skip this step and substitute canned beans.  Here’s why.  When you cook with dried beans that have been soaked, they still have a lot of firmness to them.  As they cook in the soup and soften, they release their starch–which thickens the soup. After chopping thick bacon into lardons, I placed them in a lightly olive oiled cast iron pot.  Once browned, I removed the bacon and …

Pea Soup with Tahini Sauce and Crispy Onions

Do you ever try to challenge yourself by creating a recipe based on the seemingly random ingredients sitting around in your fridge/freezer/pantry?  I usually end up scratching my head and making an omelette or pasta with olive oil and garlic.  Inspired by the Food Network’s Chopped, when challengers are forced to make dishes in a short time frame with completely random ingredients in a basket, I decided to push myself–to make do with what I had on hand–no matter how crazy it seemed. It was a Saturday afternoon, one of the chilliest early days of Fall yet, and I found myself with a craving for split pea soup.  I usually make it with dried split peas and smoked ham hocks–and had neither on hand.  But I did have a bag of beautiful peas in the freezer.  Any pea soup, in my mind, needs some sort of flavor enhancer–usually the smokiness of ham or bacon.  Then I spied the tahini sauce in the fridge.  I knew this would add an extra tang/nuttiness to the bowl.  And …