Posts tagged ‘soups & stews’
In a previous post I mentioned that on my list of favorite soups, broccoli cheese and french onion rank right up at the top. I’m not the type to really crave soups, but when I do it’s predictably one of those two. While I love experimenting with new recipes, I pretty much figured if there was another soup as reliably cravable as those two I would’ve come across it already! But then I picked up a copy of Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics from our local library, and just looking at the pictures of her version of Italian Wedding Soup, I knew it had the potential to join those two in my soup hall-of-fame. There is something magical about the combination of delicious little meatballs with pasta, fresh baby spinach, and other tasty veg in a savory chicken broth, and now that we’ve tried it it’s definitely earned a place in my top three!
This was going to be a double header post of soup awesomeness detailing my two favorite kinds of soup in the whole wide world: french onion soup, and broccoli cheese soup. Unfortunately, due to a little camera snafu I have lost all proof of the amazingness that was The French Onion Soup, so we will have to say farewell to winter with just the one recipe for the amazingness that was The Broccoli Cheese Soup (and I’ll have to get back to you sometime with the onion soup, hooray for an excuse to make it again!).
Until recently I had never tried making broccoli cheese soup for myself, but I had definitely tasted many unspectacular batches at the hands of others, so I was a little apprehensive about finding a really good recipe that would live up to my expectations. Broccoli cheese soup can easily be too thick or too thin, or overly cheesy or velveeta-y tasting. I like it to be thick but not chunky or gloopy, runny enough to still be soup but not brothy, and with a hefty fresh broccoli taste while simultaneously having the strong taste of good cheddar. Lucky for me, the first recipe I tried proved to be a fabulous one and I don’t think I’ll need to look any further.
After a rather unannounced blogging hiatus (the string of events went something like this: Stephen’s camera accompanied him to Tennessee for a week, then I was attacked by The Dish Pile To End All Dish Piles, then I had my will to cook sucked away by Christmas-rabid preschoolers, by which point The Dish Pile had grown to near unconquerable proportions), I am finally back in business, with a backlog of recipes to share before the holidays!
Julia Child’s posthumous comeback seems to have a lot of people buzzing about her classic boeuf bourguignon, and as winter weather has taken hold of late, I’ve found myself thinking fondly of the slow-stewed, wine-drenched richness of that classic recipe. However, when I go to the trouble of making a big, warm, slow-cooked meal like that, it always seems a good time to invite friends over to share in the stew (I mean come on, who halves the recipe for beef bourguignon?), and I happen to have a frequent dinner guest who is vegetarian, so what’s a girl to cook? Enter the mushroom bourguignon– somehow, even without the meat, it delivers a rich, warming quality that is perfect for a cold evening, with or without veggiephiles.
I realize that we are FAR from peak tomato season (it’s cold enough in my kitchen that the produce i forgot to put away last night has been enjoying a nice crisper treatment just being out on the counter), but recently I have rediscovered the simple deliciousness of the BLT. Well, to be honest, I have actually rediscovered the joy of the BT, because I am one of those freaks who loves lettuce in salads but positively detests it in a sandwich (it’s usually sort of limp, and let’s face it, it is really just distracting my taste buds from the bacon). But I digress…the point is, the combination of tomatoes and bacon is undeniably delicious.