Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Taking It All Too Seriously

I am without a doubt taking all this cooking too seriously. I am continually trying to outdo myself (of all people to be in competition with, I chose myself) and I find meal planning, grocery shopping, and dinner preparation to be taking an inordinate amount of my time. Tonight's dinner took about two hours to cook, and there weren't even any leftovers.

This time of year I start nesting more fervently than usual. The threat of an onrushing winter sends me into comfort mode, even though the cold weather generally lasts no more than eight weeks. This is even more absurd this year since its early October and we're still enjoying 80 degree afternoons. Regardless, I found myself searching for soup recipes this week. Soup is the ultimate comfort food for me and I have always enjoyed the slow simmering of beans and vegetables that steams up the windows in January.

Since winter is still a ways off, I picked a fairly light soup for tonight's dinner. This recipe is from Baraonda in Atlanta. I clipped the recipe last year from the AJC Food Section and tend to modify it slightly depending on what peppers I find in the crisper drawer. Tonight I was short a green bell pepper, so after a minor temper tantrum I used two additional poblanos in place of the green bell.

THREE PEPPER SOUP (an odd name considering there are four peppers in it)

  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and julienned
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and julienned
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and julienned
  • 1 small poblano pepper, seeded and julienned
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 Tbs butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Salt & pepper
  1. In a stockpot over medium heat, saute the onion in the olive oil until softened.
  2. Add peppers and bay leaf, and cook on low heat for 20 minutes.
  3. Add wine, increase heat to high and cook until evaporated, stirring frequently.
  4. Add broth and bring to a boil.
  5. In a bowl, combine butter and flour to make a paste, and slowly add to soup.
  6. Cook on medium heat for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add cream, and cool soup briefly.
  8. Discard bay leaf, and puree soup in food processor, leaving it a little chunky.
  9. Season to taste with salt & pepper.

I served the soup this evening with Risotto Col Sedano and a salad of mixed greens, crumbled feta cheese and homemade vinaigrette (though it was quite difficult to stir the risotto for 30 minutes while simultaneously tending to the soup and preparing the salad.

And, since I can never leave well enough alone, I julienned an additional slice of each of the different peppers to use as a garnish for each serving of soup. Sadly I could not figure out how to make the slices float, so they sank miserably to the bottom of the soup bowls. Will add this to my list of things that need improvement...

1 comment:

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