Posts tagged ‘Soup’

February 4, 2014

Happy Homemade Soup Day!

Happy Homemade Soup day! A great day for soup in Boulder since we’ll have a high of 16 degrees today.

It makes me sad if I don’t have some homemade chicken stock around. There’s so much you can do with it. Adding to sauces, a base for other sauces, chicken noodle soup.

Of course there are a million recipes for this, but you don’t really need one. Whenever you trim vegies or bone a rotisserie chicken freeze these things in a container or zip lock bag. Then when you get enough trimmings, rinse with water and put in a pot with more quartered onion, a couple cloves of garlic, a bay leave and some black peppercorns add a few cloves if you like that depth.

Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Skim off the foam and keep doing this for a while. The more you do this the clearer looking the stock and the cleaner tasting. If you move the pot a little off the burner, it’ll make it easier. Sometimes I forget and if you do…it’s still better than the canned!

Strain and cool. When the stock is cooled put in the fridge.

The next day, you can skim the fat off the top and use in Chicken & Sausage Bites or Risotto. For a quick and easy dinner get some store bought tortellini and simmer in your stock for Tortellini Soup!



September 15, 2013

Pho at Home


I got inspired to cook Pho in two ways. The first was from a WSJ article on the subject. The second was Ali and Geff who like this dish at a favorite restaurant for a weeknight dinner.

Another one I liked while researching this was this one below. I liked their opinions and details;


I don’t know of any great places for Pho in Boulder, but I did go to a noodle shop once in LA so I had a bit of a concept. Geff and Uncle Stacy provided a gift of some beef bones to get me started, but I have to say it was a bit overwhelming with my limited knowledge of the end game. So I started with the broth with the intention to freeze…Which I did. I wasn’t crazy though about the weird gray color of the stock. So, I kept that but started again with a more traditional stock with roasted bones. Think a cross between Ad Hock and Jacques Pepin. Anyway, I prefer roasted bones and veg for my beef stock. Still added the crazy roasted ginger and other spices. We did not use fish sauce as it’s not a fav in our house, but use it if you like it.

Yum…even though it was in the heat of summer Pho was great and fun to try. But, be prepared; it’s an adventure and lots of work!



May 27, 2012

CSA Soup

As we told you earlier this week, we got our first CSA box of the season! Participating in CSA is amazing for so many reasons: it means fresh local food all summer, you get to support local farmers, and you get a surprise in a box every week! Because we don’t know what is coming each week, it presents a challenge of creating something out of what you bring home. This week’s box included braising greens…LOTS of greens. I have wanted to make white bean and escarole soup for a while, so was born my CSA version. Fresh greens + spring onions + spring garlic + a few pantry items = healthy bean and veggie soup! Great for a cool spring evening. Add whatever veggies are your favorite for some variety. You can make this a day or two ahead and it makes great leftovers for lunch. J


White Bean and Braising Greens Soup

Inspired by Bon Appétit via Epicurious

1 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup chopped onion

2 large carrots, cut into small dice

6 spring garlic bulbs, peeled, finely diced (or 5 cloves of garlic flattened to be removed after sauté)

4 cups (packed) 1-inch pieces braising greens

4 cups (or more) canned vegetable broth or low-salt chicken stock

2 15-ounce cans cannellini (white kidney beans), rinsed, drained

1 14 1/2- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained

2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese (for garnish)

Heat oil in heavy large Dutch over medium-low heat. Add onion, carrot and garlic and sauté until onion is golden and tender, about 7 minutes.

Add braising greens; stir 3 minutes.

Add 4 cups broth, beans and tomatoes and bring to boil.

Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until escarole is tender and flavors blend, about 20 minutes. Thin with more broth, if desired. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve with an arugula salad dressed with lemon and enjoy!

February 19, 2012

Chicken Noodle Soup

I have a confession; I have a fear of making soup. Why, I am not really sure. I think it has something to do with the fact that I have so many memories of my mom and my grandmother making wonderful soups. It really is a family tradition that comes from out Eastern European ancestors. I have just recently tried to make soup on my own, but this is the first that I really feel is mine. I will even pat myself on the back and give myself credit for this one. It was good. Really good. I was even surprised because I am picky about chicken soup. I think it is tarragon, I don’t think I like it. So, I used what I like instead, thyme, it made all the difference for me.

Since my mom is under the weather today, I got inspired and decided to conquer my fear. There is nothing more classic than chicken noodle soup and nothing better to nourish you out of a cold. There are many variations, but really it just consists of chicken stock, mirepoix, chicken and noodles. So simple. And yet, some are better than others, so what gives? To me, the key is in the ingredients. Starting with a great stock is key. We have already made chicken stock together, remember? Next, make sure to cut your vegetables in even pieces, the onions small and the chicken in bite sized pieces. My grandma swore that there is no need to sauté the vegetables before adding to the stock and I think she is right. Skipping that step eliminates the fat element and the vegetables still end up tender. Finally, make your own noodles. I know, I know, it seems like a lot of work, but I promise it is easy and they make a huge difference. Just try it! This will rock your socks off! I can’t wait to hear what you think.


Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients for Soup:

2 quarts chicken stock

1 yellow onion, finely chopped

3 ribs celery, sliced

3 carrots, sliced

2 chicken breasts, cubed

Small handful fresh thyme, stems removed

2 bay leaves

Salt and pepper

Ingredients for Noodles:

1 cup flour

2 eggs

Generous pinch of coarse salt

Tablespoon fresh thyme, stems removed


Bring chicken stock to a simmer over medium heat. Add the thyme, bay leaves, onion, celery and carrots. Allow to simmer about 10 minutes until the vegetables are slightly tender.

Add chicken to the pot making sure not to allow the pot to boil, but maintain a simmer (it will keep the chicken tender.) Allow to cook about 20 minutes. If the stock has reduced too much, add additional water about a cup at a time, season with salt and pepper then reduce to a low simmer. To prepare the noodles, add all ingredients to a food processor with the blade. Pulse until the dough just comes together forming a ball, do not over mix. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead 3-5 times until the dough is smooth. Gently form into a ball and cover with a towel and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Roll out the dough until it is very thin making sure to sprinkle with flour to keep from sticking and loosening the dough from the board and turning often. You should be able to nearly see through the dough when it is ready.

Sprinkle again with flour and roll the dough up lengthwise so you can cut the dough into strips easily. Cut the dough into desired width.

Unroll each noodle and make them into a nest to allow them to dry a bit while the soup simmers. Make sure to toss in a bit of flour to keep them from sticking.

When they are ready to go into the soup, shake them through a strainer to remove the extra flour.

Add to the boiling soup just before you are ready to serve and allow to cook approximately 3 minutes. Remove bay leaves, taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.

Scoop into bowls and enjoy!


**P.S. If the stock and noodles really scare you, use prepared stock and egg noodles. It will still be good J

February 12, 2012

Peruvian Ground Beef Stew

There are some recipes like beef stew (or in our family, ground beef hash) that are comfort food staples. Just the smell brings back memories of home and family. There are others, like this stew, that are derivatives of those classics and may be (Gasp!) better than the original. This one came about when we started making Grandma’s traditional beef stew but found ourselves without all the ingredients. It became a game of saving the stew, and I think it came out amazing. It is both hearty and light at the same time and saves really well. In fact, I ate it for three days. The sweet potatoes helped to thicken it without any flour (a great option for those of you who are gluten free!) Let us know what you think!

Kelly & Mary

1 ¼ lb 85% Ground Beef

1 large onion

2 t Hungarian Sweet Paprika

Salt & Pepper

1 quart beef broth

2 T Ancho chili powder

1 t Guajillo chili

1 Yellow Pepper, chopped

½ cup petite frozen peas

2 sweet potatoes, chopped

1 pasilla negro chile

1 clove garlic

Brown the ground beef, making sure to break the beef up forming small crumbles.

When you have a good amount of liquid and fat coming out of the meat, use a paper towel to remove some of the fat. Add the chili powders, paprika and salt and pepper and continue to cook until browned. When the beef is browned, add the onion and cook until fragrant and translucent.

Add sweet potatoes. Pour in the beef broth and then add water to cover.

Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer for about an hour. Meanwhile, toast the whole pasilla chile over an open flame (or a frying pan) until slightly toasted and fragrant, about 1-2 min. Break into pieces into a blender add 1 cup of water and 1 clove of garlic and blend about 30 seconds.

Strain puree into a pan and simmer until reduced by about half. Add to the stew along with the rest of the vegetables. (You don’t HAVE to do this step since it is a bit of a process, but I loved the smokiness and depth that this added.) Allow to simmer 15-20 more min to marry the flavors and allow the peppers to soften.

Top with a bit of goat cheese, Greek yogurt or sour cream and enjoy with a salad and tortillas or bread.

Yum Yum Yum.

February 4, 2012

Super Bowl Chili

Chili is always good, any time of the year but if you add 18″ of snow on the ground AND the Super Bowl, you have the perfect combination. This is such a great Super Bowl compliment because you can prepare it ahead and leave it simmering and let people enjoy it as they are ready. We like to lay out a variety of toppings and accompaniments and leave it to our guests. It is low key and always delicious. We tend to like our chili a little spicier than some people, so we might tone this down a little for company and leave some Tabasco out for adjustments. You could make up some cornbread to serve with the chili or go easy and stick to chips, saltines or tortillas. Now grab a bowl and enjoy the game (or the commercials)!

Mary & Kelly


Serves 6

1 ¼ Lbs 85% Lean Ground Beef

1 large can Hunts tomato sauce

1 large can Kuners chili beans

1 large onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 T Gebhardts chili powder

3 T Ancho chili powder

1-3 T Guajillo chili powder

1 t Oregano

Salt & Pepper

Brown the ground beef, making sure to break the beef up forming small crumbles.

When you have a good amount of liquid and fat coming out of the meat, use a paper towel to remove some of the fat.

Add the chili powder and salt and pepper and continue to cook until browned.

When the beef is browned, add the onion and garlic and cook until fragrant and translucent. Add the tomato sauce. Pour off some of the excess chili sauce from the beans, then add to the pot.

Allow to simmer for about an hour, adding water if necessary. Taste for seasonings and adjust as necessary. The color should be deep red.

If you are making this for children you can add 1-2 tablespoons of sugar as my grandma did. If the flavor is flat, add a little vinegar (red wine, sherry or apple cider are best). You can continue to simmer and add more water or seasoning as you like. You can always add some water if you like a thinner consistency or to stretch this if more people show up!

June 17, 2011

Sopa Azteca (Tortilla Soup)

Tortilla soup is something that takes many forms now-a-days. You can have chunky or silky, low-fat or not so much. This particular version is a new favorite of ours. This is a soup made super smooth with the use of a blender with all the chunks added to the bowl. I love that you can pick your own toppings and everyone gets what they want. I tend to like this a little spicier, so I add a couple different chili (ancho and guajillo) powders to the original recipe. Not everyone loves it that way, so if you stick with the traditional dried pasilla (negro) chile, you will get a smoky, sweet, mild heat. We make chicken stock on a regular basis and I often make this using that. I really do think the homemade broth makes a big difference, but you can absolutely use store bought with great results. Add this healthy comfort food to your arsenal!


Sopa Azteca

Adapted from Rick Bayless‘ Mexican Everyday

Serves 4 to 6

Recipe from Frontera Grill/Topolobampo

1 large dried pasilla (negro) chile, stemmed and seeded

One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice (preferably fire-roasted)

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium white onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick

3 garlic cloves, peeled

2 quarts chicken broth

1 large epazote sprig, if you have one (I have not tried this yet but it’s on my radar)

4 (about 1 1/4 pounds total) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 large ripe avocado, pitted, flesh scooped from the skin and cut into 1/4-inch cubes

1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded Mexican melting cheese (like Chihuahua, quesadilla or asadero) or Monterey Jack, brick or mild cheddar

A generous 4 cups (about 6 ounces) roughly broken tortilla chips

1/2 cup Mexican crema, sour cream or creme fraîche for garnish

1 large lime, cut into 6 wedges, for serving

Quickly toast the chile by turning it an inch or two above an open flame for a few seconds until its aroma fills the kitchen. (Lacking an open flame, toast it in a dry pan over medium heat, pressing it flat for a few seconds, then flipping it over and pressing it again.) Break the chile into pieces and put in a blender jar along with the tomatoes with their juice. (A food processor will work, though it won’t completely puree the chile.)

Heat the oil in a medium (4-quart) saucepan over medium-high. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, about 7 minutes.

Scoop up the onion and garlic with a slotted spoon, pressing them against the side of the pan to leave behind as much oil as possible, and transfer to the blender. Process until smooth.

Return the pan to medium-high heat. When quite hot, add the puree and stir nearly constantly, until thickened to the consistency of tomato paste, about 6 minutes.

Add the broth and epazote, if using. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and season with salt, usually about a generous teaspoon (depending on the saltiness of the broth).

Just before serving, add the chicken to the simmering broth. Divide the avocado, cheese and tortilla chips between serving bowls.

When the chicken is done, usually about 5 minutes, ladle the soup into the bowls. Garnish with the crema. Pass the lime separately.


January 2, 2011

Grandma Del’s New Year’s Day Vegetable Soup

Growing up we spent most holidays at my grandparents house in Southern California. It always meant lots of people gathered around and on New Year’s, it always meant football. My Grandma Del always made soup as an easy way to feed the crowd after having festivities for several weeks.

This year, my dad decided he wanted to attempt the soup. Even though he is not the cook in our family, he followed the recipe to the letter. I think it came out just like hers. I never would have gotten it that way because I would have fiddled with it along the way. This is an old fashioned home-style Midwestern soup. It is delicious in its own right, but it we thought it needed some more oomph for today’s tastes. The ever-present bottle of Tabasco and Parmesan didn’t hurt and neither did the homemade french bread (courtesy of Peter Reinhart).

Grandma Del’s New Years Day Vegetable Soup

Shop on the 30th of December.  On New Years Eve Day morning put ½ gallon of water in big soup pot.  Cut in small pieces 2 ½ lbs of any good beef.  Round, chuck or Rump.   Add to water.  Include any bones.  Cut off green leaves of 2 stalks celery.  2 onions cut in ½ and pepper, garlic, basil,  rosemary.  Simmer all day, adding water.  Drain stock into big bowl.  Discard all except meat.

New years day while watching parade.  Return stock and beef to clean soup pot.  Cut small the two stalks celery, 2 more onions, 4 potatoes, 1 bunch carrots, salt and pepper to taste.

when first football game comes on add 1 lg can tomato sauce, salt pepper and basil.

2nd game add water – Stir.

3rd game add ¼ c rice.

At half time Rose Bowl Game add large package frozen mixed vegies.  Do not boil.  Serve w/ French bread butter cheese and leftover fruitcake and cookies.

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