As the latest instance of the polar vortex moves away, I am left to re-ponder my understanding of the concept of ‘cold’, as the temperatures now seem almost spring-like in comparison! But more seriously, the seeming antithesis of everything warm and green has left me increasingly anxious for spring. (I do enjoy living in the Midwest… I do enjoy living in the Midwest…)
We are just leaving soup month, but winter is still staring intently at us for the near future. So- perhaps we need a de facto extension to soup season! As I have written before, I love soup. What a better way to fight off a vortex than with a bowl of hunger-sating warmth? Chef Fabio has some options for soup, as well. I just defrosted some eggplant chili and some mixed vegetable soup from this summer. What’s your favorite soup to beat the cold?
I love soup. It’s not the first time nor the last time I will say that on this blog. I enjoy eating different soups as much as I enjoy making soup. I like that it’s easy, aside from much chopping (sometimes)! The above picture is of a curried squash and wild rice soup that I made a little while ago with the last of our squash we had from our Community Shares Agriculture (CSA) share. I often make soups with the abundance of vegetables we get, especially in the middle of summer. It tends to freeze well for winter, when CSA vegetables are nowhere around. I tend to use spices instead of salt, almost to the point of under-salting, though the broth adds much of what I don’t.
The recipe turned out fairly well. I followed some of the comments and caramelized the onions in brown sugar, as well as using tomato sauce for an acid instead of orange juice. I also upped the curry powder a bit. I baked the squash beforehand, which made it easy to mix together and used an immersion blender before adding the rice to cook. We didn’t have any butternut squash left, but some buttercup squash combined with other squash worked just fine and gave it a nice color. The wild rice (from our Minnesota trip) held up well in the soup and added to the texture. It was nicely toothsome even in the tasty leftovers. I would make this again, as we had been looking for some good squash recipes.
Chef Fabio provides his take on grilled cheese on Chow Ciao! An abundance of excellent local cheese is something I am thankful for, living in Wisconsin. It’s one of those foods that’s a personal favorite, with all the different flavors and varieties. Fabio offers a cheese primer… I’d also add that reduced fat cheese, while still good in some recipes (to keep flavor and cut a few calories), won’t produce the necessary melting one might hope for.
And don’t miss it- cooking with a brick! And I’m not talking about brick cheese… but you could make a cheese sandwich with a brick and brick cheese…