I LOVE my immersion blender. What a wonderful Valentine's Day present from my favorite boyfriend! ...Okay, let's be honest: I picked it myself. And damn, can I pick them! :D Excellent purchase.
Puree soups, obviously, are the result of this. Turns out it's pretty easy - cook some veggies in some stock, puree, add cream, season, and TADA! I like to make my own stock and coincidentally I had a carcass of a roasted chicken with some meat on it left over from a previous (lazy store-bought) dinner, so I threw together a quick stock. The roasted chicken really added flavor to the stock, so if you have that available, do use it.
Home Made Chicken Stock
Chicken bones and meat (cooked or raw)
2 carrots, cleaned and cut in half (I used yellow carrots)
1 large yellow onion, cleaned and quartered
3-4 black pepper corns
1 bay leaf
Salt to taste
1. Put everything into a big pot and cover with water. Bring to a rolling boil. Skim off any foam that comes up. Once it stops foaming, turn down the heat and simmer for around 2 hours.
2. Spoon out the oil that collects on the surface. Fish out the large pieces of veggies and chicken, and pour the rest of the stock through a fine meshed strainer. Then pour it through the strainer again.
Easy enough, right? Yes. Yes, it is. The recipe for the soup I got from "Joy of Cooking" by I.S. Rombauer, M. Rombauer Becker, and E. Becker that was given to me as a Christmas gift by Nick's step-mom. This book is really great - it has recipes for practically everything! Love it.
Cream of Asparagus Soup
About 5 cups
4 tbsp butter
1 cup coarsely chopped onions (1 large or 2 medium onions should do)
1 1/2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups hot chicken stock, chicken broth or other light stock or broth
1/2 to 1 cup heavy cream, half-and-half or milk
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Melt butter in a soup pot over medium heat. Add chopped onion and cook, stirring, until tender but not browned.
2. Stir in asparagus. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the flour. Turn the heat to high. Slowly stir in the chicken stock and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, until the asparagus is very tender, about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Using a food processor or an immersion blender, process until smooth. Return soup back to the pot and stir in the cream or milk. Heat through but not to boil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Notes: You never want to add cold stock to soups. Trust me, I heard that on the Food Network :) Also, might as well heat up the cream before adding it - then you don't have to heat it through again. As for garnishes, I grated some Parmesan cheese, a hard boiled egg cut in half, and some finely chopped green onion. You can also make a grilled cheese sandwich with it. Could you really go wrong with a grilled cheese sandwich?
It's all pretty straight forward. Watch your heat as to not burn the veggies.
The Verdict: Nick REALLY liked this one. I made it in the beginning of March, and a few weeks ago he actually told me he was craving it again. It's a winner.
Do you know a good cream of sweet potato or carrot soup recipe? Let me know! Comment, like, and share the delicious joy :D Seriously, though, share. I need more followers!
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