Creamy Asparagus Soup

May 16th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

3 tablespoons butter
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 medium shallot, chopped
2 cups asparagus stems
1 tablespoon fresh lemon thyme leaves
4 cups vegetable broth (preferably onion-herb or neutral based)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ cup heavy cream
Salt
Black pepper

Directions

In a large skillet, over medium high heat, add butter. Cook the onions and shallots for a few minutes or until slightly translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the asparagus and sauté a few minutes. Add the lemon thyme and sauté until the asparagus is soft. Add the vegetable stock, lemon zest, and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Using an immersion blender, puree into a smooth soup. Slowly blend in the heavy cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

Goat Cheese, Watercress and Mixed Spring Pea Risotto with Pea Shoots

April 24th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

5 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, chopped fine
1½ cups Arborio rice
½ cup dry white wine
1 cup fresh peas, blanched
1 cup watercress, chopped
¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
Pea shoots, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

In a medium sized saucepot heat chicken broth until warm and simmer while making risotto. In a separate medium saucepot over medium heat, add olive oil. Cook shallot until translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add rice and cook and stir for 1 minute. Next, add wine and cook until all liquid is absorbed. Add 1 cup vegetable broth, reduce and then add another ½ cup liquid every 7 minutes or so until rice is almost cooked through, about 20. Add peas and watercress and cook 5 minutes more. Remove from heat, and finish with goat cheese. Season with salt and pepper and serve garnished with pea shoots.

Spring Pea & Mint Ravioli with Sweet Pea Flowers

April 24th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

1 shallot, minced
1 cup fresh English peas, steamed soft and mashed
¼ cup fresh mint, chopped
¼ cup ricotta cheese
¼ cup goat cheese
½ teaspoon lemon zest
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
Herbed pasta dough

For the sauce

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 shallot
½ cup vegetable broth
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon mint, chopped
2 tablespoons butter

Sweet Pea Flowers, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

Mix and mash all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl until all ingredients are well incorporated and smooth. Using fresh herb pasta sheets cut into about 2 square inches, add 1 dollop of filling. Cover with another 2 inch pasta square. Using wet fingers, seal all sides of ravioli by pinching down, making sure the raviolis are sealed well.

Place raviolis in a large pot of salted boiling water. Boil for about 3 minutes, or until the raviolis float to the top of the pan. Strain, place a few raviolis in each serving dish.

For the sauce

In a sauté pan over medium heat, add olive oil. Cook shallot until soft, about 3 minutes. Add vegetable broth and lemon and reduce. Add lemon zest and mint. Finish with butter and serve over cooked raviolis and garnish with sweet pea flowers.

Carrot Soup with Cilantro-Lime Cream

February 24th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 teaspoon cumin
4 cups carrots, chopped
4 cups vegetable broth or water
Juice of ½ a lime
Salt
Cilantro-Lime Cream, to garnish (recipe follows)

DIRECTIONS

In a heavy bottomed soup pot over medium heat, add canola oil. Add the garlic and onions, and sauté for a few minutes or until the onions start to get translucent. Add the cumin and cook, 1 minute. Add the carrots and vegetable broth or water, and bring to a gentle boil. Lower the heat, and simmer for 25 minutes or until the carrots are tender. Remove from heat, and cool for a few minutes.
Once soup has cooled, add lime juice, and season with salt. Puree soup with a hand blender or standing blender until smooth. If your soup is too thick, add more vegetable broth.
Finish soup with a drizzle of cilantro-lime cream, and serve.

Cilantro-Lime Cream

Makes a ½ cup

INGREDIENTS

½ cup sour cream
Juice and zest of 1 lime
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt

DIRECTIONS

Place all ingredients in a small bowl, and whisk. Set aside.

Creamy Parsnip Apple Soup

February 23rd, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink

Serves 8-10

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 shallots, chopped fine
1 medium yellow onion, chopped fine
6-8 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped fine
1 medium apple, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
5 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 cup half & half

DIRECTIONS

In a large soup pan over medium-high heat, add butter and oil. Cook shallots, yellow onion, parsnips, apple and thyme until onions are translucent and the parsnips and apple are lightly browned, about 7-10 minutes. Add broth, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes or until parsnips and apples are soft and can be pierced with a fork. Remove from heat and blend using an immersion blender. Slowly add the half & half while blending until smooth and creamy.

White Bean, Onion and Rosemary Soup

February 23rd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

½ pound (about 1½ cups) cannellini beans, soaked overnight and drained
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large yellow onions, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
3 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
2 fresh bay leaves
4 cups vegetable broth or water
Salt
Pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil

DIRECTIONS

In a large heavy bottomed soup pot, over medium low heat, add olive oil. Sauté onions until translucent, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes. Add the drained white beans, thyme, rosemary, bay leaves and vegetable broth. Cover, bring to a boil, and simmer for 40 to 45 minutes, until the beans are very soft. Remove the thyme, rosemary and bay leaves. Pass the soup through a food mill or use an immersion blender to puree. Return the soup to the pot to reheat and add salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil.

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

January 2nd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Make 4 to 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2½ pounds plum tomatoes, cored, quarter and deseeded
2 yellow onions, peeled and quartered
5 cloves garlic, peeled
½ cup fresh basil, stems and leaves (chop leaves and reserve)
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups vegetable (onion based) broth
2 fresh bay leaves (optional)
3 tablespoons butter (optional)

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 450°F.

In a large roasting pan combine olive oil, tomatoes, onions, garlic, basil stems, and thyme leaves and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes, or until soft and caramelized. Discard basil stems.

Once out of the oven, transfer to a large heavy bottomed soup pot and place on the stove over medium heat. Add 2 cups of vegetable broth and bay leaves (if using), increase heat and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add more salt if necessary. Remove bay leaves and discard. Using an immersion blender, add butter (if using) and reserved basil leaves and blend soup until smooth. Add more vegetable broth if too thick. Serve immediately.

Curried Yellow Lentils and Sweet Potato Soup (Yellow Lentils)

January 2nd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped fine
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1½ teaspoons garam masala
1½ teaspoons curry powder
1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
4 cups vegetable broth
1 cup yellow lentils
1 fresh bay leaf
1 teaspoon salt, more to taste
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of ½ lime

DIRECTIONS

In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, garam masala, and curry powder. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add sweet potatoes and cook with spices, 5 minutes. Add vegetable broth, lentils and bay leaf. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium, partially cover, and simmer for until lentils are tender about 30 to 45 minutes.

Just before serving, add cilantro and lime juice. Serve immediately.

Classic Italian Lentil Soup (Brown Lentils)

January 2nd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, chopped small
2 small carrots, peeled and chopped small
2 celery, chopped small
2 tablespoons thyme
1 (15 ounce) can whole plum tomatoes
4 cups vegetable (onion based) broth
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup brown Italian lentils
2 fresh bay leaves
Parmigiano Reggiano cheese rind
Grated Parmigiano Reggiano, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

In a heavy bottomed Dutch oven, over medium heat, add olive oil. Add onions and cook until translucent, 7 minutes. Add carrots, celery and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 7 minutes more. Reduce heat to medium low and add tomatoes, cook until flavor becomes concentrated, stirring to makes sure tomatoes and vegetable don’t burn, 15 minutes. Next, add vegetable broth, salt, lentils, bay leaves and Parmigiano Reggiano rind. Increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cook until lentils are tender. Remove cheese rind and serve garnished with more cheese.

Roast Pumpkin Soup with Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin Seeds

November 9th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large carrots, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 (2-pound) pumpkin, peeled, seeded and chopped (about 6 cups) and roasted
6 cups vegetable broth
3 whole star anise
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
½ cup heavy cream
¼ cup maple syrup
Autumn Spiced Pumpkin Seeds, for garnic, recipe follows

PREPARATION

Melt butter in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add carrots and onion, sauté until tender, about 8 minutes. Add pumpkin, vegetable broth, star anise, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. Cover and simmer until pumpkin is very tender, about 25 minutes. Discard Star anise. Purée soup in batches in blender and return back to Dutch oven. Stir in cream and maple and bring soup back to simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
(Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill. Bring to simmer before serving, thin with more stock, if desired.)

Autumn Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

INGREDIENTS

½ cup raw pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons maple syrup
½ tablespoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon allspice
¼ teaspoon cayenne

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Toss pumpkin seeds with butter, maple syrup and spices and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown and toasted. Let cool.

Spinach and Fresh Herb Risotto

November 9th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

2 cups water
1 cup vegetable broth
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1½ cups baby spinach
½ cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
½ cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
¼ cup fresh chives, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh marjoran, chopped
1½ cup Arborio rice
1 cup white wine
1 tablespoon butter
¼ cup Asiago cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste

PREPARATION

In a medium sized saucepot heat water and vegetable broth until warm and simmer while making risotto. In a separate large saucepot, sauté onions and garlic in oil until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add spinach and herbs and sauté, 1 to 2 minutes. Then add rice, cook stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Next add white wine and reduce until rice absorbs all the liquid, 3 to 5 minutes. Next, add ½ cup liquid, reduce liquid and then add another ½ cup liquid every 7 minutes or so until rice is cooked through and tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat, finish with butter and cheese and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Pumpkin Maple Soup with Autumn Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

October 11th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 large onion, chopped
1 teaspoon all spice
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
½ teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
2 (2-pound) pumpkin peeled, seeded, chopped (about 6 cups)
½ cup whipping cream
4 cups vegetable broth
¼ cup maple syrup
2 star anise Salt and freshly ground pepper

For garnish, recipes follow
Autumn Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
Cranberry Sage Pecan Pesto
Red Basil Ginger Almond Cinnamon Pesto

PREPARATION

Melt butter in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and carrots, sauté until tender, about 8 minutes. Add pumpkin, 6 cups stock and star anise, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. Cover and simmer until pumpkin is very tender, about 25 minutes. Discard star anise. Purée soup in batches in blender. Return to Dutch oven. Stir in cream and maple syrup . Bring to simmer and season to taste with salt and pepper.

(Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill. Bring to simmer before serving, thin with more stock, if desired.)

Autumn Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

INGREDIENTS

½ cup pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons butter, melted
½ tablespoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon allspice
3 tablespoons maple syrup

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 400ËšF.
Toss pumpkin seeds with butter and spices, place in oven, 15 minutes or until crisp and golden. Let cool.

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