Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Pizza Soup

Snow Drops

This first week of spring was warm and what a joy it was finding the snow drops. There are several different types of snow drops, each with a unique name. We only have this one at the farm. They have grown here for at least forty years and as of yet, I have not been able to find out their name. If anyone knows, please leave me a comment, I would love to hear from you.

I was missing all our families this week, especially our grandchildren. When we get together, quite often we have pizza. With that in mind, Souper Lynda’s Pizza Soup recipe came to my attention. She could not be with us, as she is the baking queen at Purity Ice Cream, does income taxes at H&R Block, plus is working on a master’s degree in her spare time!! She mentioned that not only did this soup have great flavor, but it was fun to make. We took Saturday afternoon, had a pizza party making the soup and wow it really does taste like pizza!! This soup is great for anyone over 60, under 10 and anyone in between. I know my grandchildren could even make this!
Souper Lynda - Purity's baking queen

Pizza Soup

Souper Lynda

Souper Eric & Souper Sarah

This is simple to prepare, yet full of that delicious spicy pizza flavor. The melted mozzarella cheese on top makes this soup.


Serves 4-6

½ log Pepperoni, quartered and cubed
1 medium onion, diced
3 large garlic cloves diced
1 can (10 3/4oz) tomato soup (condensed)
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 cup dried macaroni, cooked and drained

8 oz shredded mozzarella
1 tablespoon olive oil

oregano, parsley and basil


1 – Heat oil in soup pan. Add the onions and garlic and cook for 3 minutes.

2 – Add pepperoni and simmer for 15 minutes until the mixture has softened.

3 - Add tomato soup, diced tomatoes, and herbs and simmer for 10 minutes.

4 – Add macaroni and season to taste. Heat and serve in hot bowls, with mozzarella layer on top.


Cubed pepperoni

Simmering onions, garlic and pepperoni

Cooked and drained macaroni

Simmer until flavored through

Serve hot with mozzarella cheese

The next day the flavor of this soup was awesome! It just keeps growing the longer you have it. The next time you think of pizza, try this soup, I’m sure it will be a crowd pleaser! Thank you Lynda for sharing your great recipe.

The thought for the week -

When you commit your dreams to paper, you give them a place to take root.

Happy souping until we meet again!

Souper Sarah

Monday, March 22, 2010

Leek, Parsnip, and Ginger Soup

Phantom photographer with a stone heart!

Spring is here this week and the parsnips are calling us. My souper hubby Eric not only was the photographer, but he dug the parsnips too. Last summer we had a bumper crop of parsnips, so we have lots to dig! They have such a fresh smell to them. The soup we are making is Leek, Parsnip, and Ginger Soup from The Soup Bible/Debra Mayhew. This is a flavorful spring soup with the spiciness of fresh ginger. The leek haystack garnish is interesting looking and the crunchy texture contrasts well with the smoothness of the soap.

Leek, Parsnip, and Ginger Soup

Souper Eric/Souper Sarah

The sweet flavor of the parsnips is excellent in this soup along with the savory flavor of the leeks and ginger that enhance the taste.

Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups sliced leeks
2 tablespoons peeled and minced ginger root
5 cups roughly chopped parsnips
1 ¼ cups dry white wine
5 cups chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
fromage blanc

Leek Haystacks:
1 large leek – cut in 2 inch fine strips
2 tablespoons flour

1 – Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the leeks and ginger and cook slowly for 2 to 3 minutes until the leeks start to become soft.

2 – Add the parsnips and cook for 7 to 8 minutes longer until they begin to become soft.

3 – Pour in the wine and stock and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the parsnips are tender.

4 – Puree with a hand blender until smooth. Season to taste. Reheat slowly until hot.

5 – Place the 2 inch fine leek strips in a bowl, sprinkle the flour over, and toss to coat.

6 – In a pan heat butter and drop small spoonfuls of the floured leeks and cook until golden. Drain on paper towels.

7 - Serve at once, garnish with a swirl of fromage blanc and a light dusting of paprika. Strew the leek haystacks on top of the soup in the center.

Souper hubby Eric digging parsnips

Parsnips in the ground

Enough parsnips for the soup

Slicing the leeks

Sliced leeks and minced ginger root

Chopped parsnips

Cook leeks, ginger and parsnips until they become soft

Making leek haystack garnish

Sautéing the leek haystacks

Golden haystacks

Serve soup with haystack garnish and fromage blanc
with a light dusting of paprika

I could not find the fromage blanc that was called for with this soup. Here is what Wikipedia had to say – that it is a dairy product, originating from Belgium and the north of France. The name literally means “fresh cheese” or “white cheese” and used in savory dishes. I used sour cream thinned with a little half & half; making a delicate pattern on the soup and I think it tasted great.

This was an easy soup to make and you can see I had Eric doing all the heavy work! Thanks Eric, it was a great afternoon. We both said how much we love parsnips. As Julia Child would say – our body hummed with contentment!!!
Happy Birthday
Jamie, Mom & Eric
It was a great week - Mom's 95th birthday along with Eric's and Jamie's - just 30 years differenc with their ages. We had 4 of our 7 families home and spring arrived. What more could you ask for!!!
The thought for the week-
The future of health care will draw on the wisdom of many traditions.
Happy souping until we meet again!
Souper Sarah

Monday, March 15, 2010

Lobster Bisque

Sapsucker Woods Pond

We went to Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary this week for a walk on the trails and to watch the birds. If you haven’t been there, you should stop and look around. The visitors’ center is beautiful with an inside bird watching place, lots of literature and movies on wild life. Check out their web site -www.birds.cornell.edu, I’m sure you will find it interesting.


Souper Rachel is here to make Lobster Bisque with me this week. She is an integral part of Purity Ice Cream management team. She manages and handles making the muffins at the crack of dawn, is in charge of the ice cream cake department (she is so artistic) and is in charge of the events that Purity has. I think she knows how to do just about anything at Purity! She is also a licensed massage therapist and a couple nights a week is busy doing massages. Rachel loves lobsters¸ so she picked this soup out of The Soup Bible/Debra Mayhew to make for the blog. The lobster is essential for this distinctive fine- flavor soup. Plan on making enough of this recipe, which serves 4, because the three of us ate the whole recipe!

Lobster Bisque

Souper Rachel/Souper Sarah

The blue and black clawed lobster is known as the king of the shellfish. When cooked, its shell turns a brillant red. This is an extravagant soup, worthy of a celebration dinner party.

Serves 4
1 cooked lobster, about 1 1/2 pounds
2 tablespoons vegetables oil
½ cup butter
2 shallots, minced
Juice of ½ lemon
3 tablespoons brandy
1 bay leaf
1 sprig of fresh parsley, plus extra to garnish
¼ teaspoon of mace
1 ¼ quarts of fish stock
4 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoon heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
A dash of cayenne pepper, to garnish

1 – Preheat the oven to 350. Lay the lobster out flat and split in half lengthwise. Remove and discard the little stomach sac from the head, the threadlike intestine, and the coral, if any.
2 – In a large soup pan that can be put in the oven, heat the oil with 2 tablespoons of butter. Sauté the lobster, flesh-side down, for 5 minutes. Add the shallots, lemon juice, and brandy and roast for 15 minutes.

3 – Remove the lobster meat from the shell. Place the shell and the juices in a large saucepan and simmer with the bay leaf, parsley, mace, and stock for 30 minutes; strain. Finely chop 1 tablespoon of the lobster meat. Process the rest with 3 tablespoons of the butter.

4 – Melt the remaining butter. Add the flour and cook slowly for 30 seconds. Add the stock gradually and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Stir in the processed lobster meat, the cream, and seasoning to taste.
5 – Ladle into warm soup bowls and garnish with lobster, parsley springs, and a sprinkling of cayenne. Serve at once, piping hot.

The lobster wave!

Handsome creature!

Sauté lobster in butter and oil

Remove lobster meat from shell

Simmering for 30 minutes

Strain the stock

Add lobster meat , cream and season to taste

Serve at once, piping hot!

Served with spinach salad

We used Ground Mace this week in our soup. The recipe originally called for a blade of mace. I had quite a time finding out what a blade was and what we should use in the soup. The internet info - use 1/4 teaspoon of ground mace. Mace has a warm,spicy flavor that is subtler, but similar to nutmeg's with a more delicate flavour. Mace is often preferred in light dishes for the bight orange, saffron-like hue it imparts. Maceis produced by the Myristica franrans, a member of the mayriticaceae family. This plant, native to Indonesia, grows into a tropical evergreen tree of up to thirty feet tall. This same tree produces the better known nutmeg spice.

Rachel & I had fun attacking the lobster and there were parts and pieces flying around! It was all worth it. The combination of shallots, brandy and the mace simmering with the lobster gave it a delicious edge. It left a wonderful taste in your mouth. Thank you, Rachel for picking this great soup and cooking with me!!!
The thought for the week -
Only you can decide the path worth taking.
Happy souping until we meet again!
Souper Sarah

Monday, March 8, 2010

Turkey Rice Soup

Waiting for spring!!

I have been hungry for turkey lately and it seems like a long time since Thanksgiving. This was the perfect week for a roasting a turkey breast, plus they were on sale! I used a rub of thyme, garlic, cayenne pepper, olive oil and soy sauce to roast it. It was basted with sherry wine. The house just smelled sooo good. The turkey was golden brown and done to perfection; not to mention a dinner to die for! The roasting pan gave the soup a good beginning. About 2 cups of the gravy from the drippings went into the soup. The brown skin of the turkey, with all the garlic and thyme helped make this home-made stock so rich. The soup is brimming with rice and colorful vegetables that combine the flavors. I love this soup and I’m sure you will too!

Turkey Rice Soup
* * *
Souper Sarah

The use of the turkey carcass turn this ordinary soup into a full-flavored one that has a rich variety of vegetables and rice simmering along with it.

Serves 10-12

Turkey stock:
1 turkey carcass
3 quarts water
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon thyme
3 celery ends and pieces
4 carrots ends
1 onion peel and ends

Soup ingredients:
3/4 cup long grain rice
1 small onion chopped
1 1/2 cup celery chopped - stems, heart and leaves
2 cups carrots chopped
1 - 8 oz baby bella mushrooms -sliced and cut in half
4 cups turkey bite size
2 tablespoons butter
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon thyme
Dash cayenne pepper
White pepper

1 - Cut off any extra meat from the turkey carcass in bite size pieces and save for soup.

2 - In large stock pot, cover turkey carcass with water. Add to pan bay leaves, thyme, celery pieces, carrot ends, onion peel and ends. Simmer for about 2 hours. Drain stock and chill. Pick out the meat from the strainer and shred into bite size pieces: save for soup. Discard the bones, skin and scrap vegetables.

3 - When stock is cold, carefully remove the layer of fat.

4 - Bring stock to a rolling boil and add rice; reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

5 - In a large fry pan over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter and add onions, celery and carrots. If you need more butter or liquid, add 1/4 cup of stock and stir in. Cook for 10 minutes or until the vegetables become soft. Save for soup.

6 - Melt rest of butter in fry pan and add baby bella mushrooms and 1 tablespoon lemon juice; cook gently for 3 minutes.

7 - Add to the simmering stock all the vegetables and season with thyme, cayenne pepper, salt, and white pepper. Season to taste. You may need to add lemon juice to enhance your flavor. Simmer for 25 minutes.

8 - Serve piping hot.


Chopped onion

Long grain rice

Onion, celery, and carrots

Turkey bite size pieces

Baby Bella mushrooms

Simmering pot

Serve piping hot

Served with sour dough bread

There is something delicious about combining the flavor of turkey and rice. What a great soup!

We have now had 3 soups with onions, celery and carrots. You could buy in bulk and freeze for later. You can freeze diced carrots, onions, bell peppers, and celery in large batches on baking sheets. Store the frozen vegetables in resealable plastic bags in the freezer – when you need some for cooking, thaw under cool water and pat dry with paper towels. “Cuisine at home”

The thought for ther week -

Allow yourself the chance to really savor each moment!

Happy souping until we meet again!

Souper Sarah

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Broccoli Soup

March 1st
Eppie, our troll did not see his shadow
4 more weeks of winter!

Souper Family - Sam, Will, Jamie & Stacey

This week we have Souper Stacey and family making Broccoli Soup with us. This is Will's favorite soup. Stacey has always had a love for food and cooking; she become an expert cook and learned her culinary art at the Connecticut Culinary Institute. When ever I have a cooking question or need a food subsitute for a recipe, she has the answer! This soup has a thick body and rich flavor derived from pureeing the soup. Not only is it nutritional, but it's delicious. I know you will enjoy it!

Broccoli Soup
Souper Stacey, Jamie, Sam & Will
Souper Sarah

The Broccoli Soup has a hint of Spring with it's green color. The soup makes a perfect cold winter meal with it's full body and rich texture.

Serves 6-8
1 small onion coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups celery - chopped
6 broccoli - stems and flowerets
- chopped separately
1/4 pound cheddar cheese - shredded
2 quarts chicken broth
1/2 cup half-and-half
6 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons thyme
white pepper

1 - Wash broccoli, separate flowerets and stems. Cut, blanch and save about 2 cups of the flowerets for garnishing the soup. Coarsely chop the rest of the broccoli for the main base of the soup.

2 - Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large soup pan over medium heat. Add onions, celery and brocoli stems: cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft. About 10 minutes.

3 - Add rest of butter (4 tablespoons) and let melt. Stir in flour for roux and cook until blended.

4 - Add chicken stock and thyme and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes.

5 - Leave the soup to cool slightly. Pour into a food processor and puree until smooth. Pour soup back into pan.

6 - Add half-and-half to pan. Season to taste with salt and white pepper. Reheat slowly after adding blanched flowerets for about 10 minutes.

7 - Serve soup hot and topped with shredded cheddar cheese.

Separate flowerets and stems

Bowl of flowerets

Good job - Sam washing the celery

Should we put this carrot in?

Cooking vegetables until soft

Cutting the butter - Great job Will

Add flour for making the roux

Add chicken stock and thyme -
simmer 10 minutes

Pour into food processor
and puree until smooth

Add half-and-half and season to taste

Bowl of shredded cheddar cheese

Soup topped with cheese

Serve hot

How long do I have to wait to eat?

Fresh fruit served with soup

We served the broccoli soup with fresh fruit and sweet potato oven fries with avocado dip. The best part about this soup is the melted cheddar cheese! It was sooo decilious that many of us had 2 bowls!!

We used the herb thyme to season the soup. Thyme is a good source of iron and is widely used in cooking to flavour meats, (pork tenderloin) soups and stews (beef). The thyme is slow to release it's flavors, allowing it be added early in the cooking process. The ancient Greeks used it in their baths and burnt it as incense in their temples, believing that thyme was a souce of courage. In the European Middle Ages, the herb was placed beneath pillows to aid sleep and ward off nightmares."Wikipedia" This is my favorite herb and I used it quite often.

Stacey made a roux when making the soup (step 3 in the directions) and here are her pointers in making a great roux. Use equal amounts of butter to flour and use cold liquid when adding to the hot roux. Thanks for the great cooking techniques! There isn't anything better than having your family with you and cooking together. Thank you souper family!!

The thought for the week -
Spring is coming, make it a point to heed your need for solitude.

Happy souping until we meet again!
Souper Sarah