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Creamy Black Garlic Potato Soup #sevendaysofsoups

Ingredients:

  • 4-6 medium potatoes, peeled & diced
  • 6 pearl onions, peeled & halved
  • 4 cloves black garlic, crushed
  • 8 oz heavy cream
  • 1 qt vegetable or chicken stock
  • EVOO
  • up to 1C dry instant potatoes (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot heat a few tsp EVOO over medium-high heat.
  2. Sweat pearl onions until translucent.
  3. Toss in the black garlic & toss until onions are coated & mixture is fragrant.
  4. Add potatoes and toss to combine.
  5. Pour in stock. If it doesn’t cover the potatoes, add enough hot water to cover.
  6. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover & lower to medium heat.
  7. Simmer over medium heat until potatoes are tender, 10-15 mins.
  8. Lower heat & purée mixture with a hand blender until smooth.
  9. Whisk in the cream. *Hint: If at this point you feel that the soup isn’t reaching your desired thickness, you can sprinkle in the dry instant potatoes, a little at a time, whisking constantly until you reach the desired thickness.*
  10. Heat soup gently, over medium-low heat until heated through. Serve with crusty bread.

Need some black garlic? Order 40 day aged Black Garlic from my Etsy shop, Mise en Place Gourmet

So you want to make a stock… #sevendaysofsoup

I’ve been making my own soups from scratch for quite awhile. Making soups is easy and FUN! The only reason I can think of for buying instant or condensed soups is because making soups can be a little time consuming. Typically, you don’t have to *watch* the soup as it simmers; you can do other things and just pop into the kitchen periodically to give your soup a stir!

The cornerstone to making good soups is obviously making good stocks. It’s a fairly simple process, but can be time consuming. Once you’ve made a batch of stock/broth you can can it, or freeze it in smaller containers if you don’t have a canner.

Any time you are making stock you will need to have carrots, celery, and onions on hand for making a mirepoix. You will also need them for most soups. When I’m chopping mirepoix for a stock, I use an equal amount of each & chop them coarsely. I don’t peel the carrots, and I leave the leaves on the celery. I peel the onion (usually I like to use white onions) and take the ends off, then chop coarsely.

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This is a pretty good example of what my mirepoix looks like.

There are 4 stocks that you should learn to make before you begin your soup voyage: chicken stock, bone broth, veggie stock, and fish/seafood stock. I’ve touched on chicken & fish stock here before (see links above) but not bone broth or veggie stock. So let’s tackle those, shall we?

Bone Broth has gotten a lot of great press lately as a natural cure-all for whatever ails you. Is it legit? Maybe. In general, I usually feel better when I’ve had some homemade broth. I think the real key here is using bones with marrow in them. Many moons ago (almost a year ago) I made some beef bone broth & posted this pic to Instagram.

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Here’s the method I like to use for my bone broth.

Beef Bone Broth 

Ingredients:

  • 1 package beef soup bones with marrow (they will look like the picture above)
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • half a bunch of celery (3-4 stalks), coarsely chopped, leave on any leaves
  • 3-4 carrots, coarsely chopped, unpeeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed & unpeeled
  • EVOO
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste

Instructions:

 

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Arrange bones in a single layer in a roasting pan. Surround with onions, carrots, celery, and garlic. Drizzle with oil and toss to coat.
  3. Roast bones and vegetables, turning and stirring occasionally until lightly browned (for about 45 mins).
  4. Smear bones with tomato paste & roast another 30-40 mins, until deeply browned.
  5. Transfer bones and vegetables to a large stockpot, spooning off any visible fat that you see. Make sure to pour any juices in the bottom of the pan as well as any brown sticky bits into the stockpot as well.
  6. Add enough water to cover the bones & vegetables, as well as a few inches extra. I like to use hot water from my electric kettle.
  7. Toss in your bay leaves and season with Kosher salt & black pepper, if desired.
  8. Bring stockpot to a boil, cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 6-8 hours, stirring occasionally and adding more water if needed.
  9. Strain stock through a cheesecloth and can or freeze until ready to use. Skim any fat off the top, as needed, but remember that a bone-broth may be more gelatinous than you expect, particularly after it is cooled. Despite skimming and straining it may still have a cloudy appearance when it is finished. This is normal & does not reflect on the quality of your broth.

Veggie stock is quick easy to make, especially since you don’t have to worry about fat clouding things up. It’s great to use in vegetable-based soups, or if you’re out of another stock.

Easy-Peasy Veggie Stock

Ingredients:

  • EVOO
  • 1 onion, peeled & coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 bunch celery, leaves left on, chopped coarsely
  • 1 lb carrots, unpeeled, chopped coarsely
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste

*Note: feel free to toss in any other veggie waste from other stocks/soups. I have even made veggie stock from trimmings (leaves, stems, etc) from other recipes.*

Instructions:

  1. Heat EVOO in a medium stockpot over medium until hot. Add chopped onion and cook, stirring often, until translucent. About 10 to 15 minutes. Add celery, carrots, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and golden, about 10 minutes.
  2. Pour in enough water to cover vegetables by 1 inch (8 to 10 cups) and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper, if desired, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook, covered, 1 hour.
  3. Pour stock through cheesecloth into a large bowl or another pot, pressing on vegetables to extract as much flavorful liquid as possible. Discard solids. Cool and store in canning jars, or freeze until ready to use.

 

Creamy Salmon Soup AKA “Lohikeitto”

Remember the Legit Fish Stock I made the other day? It made 4 quart-size mason jars full, and here’s what I made with 2 of them. This recipe is for a salmon soup, known in Finland as Lohikeitto. You pronounce it like this. It’s a simple, hearty soup that’s surprisingly filling. I actually adapted it from a recipe, translated from Finnish with metric measurements changed over. You’re welcome. If you’re interested, you can find the original recipe on my Pinterest board, Viking Grub.

Creamy Salmon Soup

makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 15-oz can Pink or Red Alaskan Salmon
  • 2 quarts fish Stock
  • 1/2 large white onion, diced fine
  • 4 cardamom pods, smashed open
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 medium red potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 C half-and-half
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • dill or chives for garnish (optional)
  • salt & white pepper (to taste)

Instructions:

  1. In a medium dutch oven or a large pot, bring stock to a boil.
  2. When the stock is boiling, add onion, cardamom pods, nutmeg, and bay leaves.
  3. Add the potatoes to the boiling stock and cook for about 10 mins.
  4. Remove the cardamom pods and bay leaves from the broth.
  5. Remove the salmon from the can. Examine it for any small bones or residual bits of skin, and remove these. The can that I used contained most of a spinal column and a few pin bones and I’m not really too into having that in my soup so I pulled them out.  IMG_1019
  6. Break the salmon into bite-sized chunks and add to the soup. Simmer soup at medium-high heat for about 5 mins.
  7. Add the half-and-half and the butter, heat for about 5 mins at medium heat, or until the butter is melted.
  8. Taste the soup and add salt and white pepper to taste. I found the fish & stock to be salty enough, so I didn’t feel that I needed to add any salt.
  9. Serve warm and topped with dill or chives, if desired, with a few slices of dark bread for sopping up the broth.

Cheaters Chicken Stock

This morning I’m making a little chicken stock using the carcass from a rotisserie chicken we had for dinner last week. You can do this any time you have a full chicken or turkey for a meal. No time to make stock in the day or two after the meal? Just put the carcass in a freezer bag & put it in the freezer until you’re ready to use it. I actually froze mine right in the rotisserie chicken container.

This recipe is kind of a short-cut stock, but it’s easy and cheap & you can use it in any recipe that calls for stock or broth.

Cheaters Chicken Stock

Ingredients:

  • Chicken (or turkey) carcass- don’t worry about any bits of meat or fat or skin, leave them on they will be strained out later
  • 1 pound of carrots, roughly chopped (leave on the tops and skin, they will be strained out too)
  • 1/2 a bunch of celery, roughly chopped (again, leave the leaves on)
  • 1/2 a large onion, roughly chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tbsp EVOO
  • Hot water to cover

Instructions:

  1. In a large stockpot or dutch oven heat EVOO over medium high heat.
  2. Add celery, carrots, and onion & sweat until translucent but not browned.

    When I'm making stock, I chop my mirepoix (celery, onion, carrot) very roughly and I leave on skins, stems, and leaves to be removed later.

    When I’m making stock, I chop my mirepoix (celery, onion, carrot) very roughly and I leave on skins, stems, and leaves to be removed later.

  3. Season with salt & pepper, if desired.
  4. Add your carcass to the pot and cover with water (I like to use hot water heated in my electric kettle).

    Store your carcass in the freezer until ready to use.

    Store your carcass in the freezer until ready to use.

  5. Bring stock to a boil, cover and reduce heat to medium-low.

    The longer you simmer, the more flavorful your stock will be!

    The longer you simmer, the more flavorful your stock will be!

  6. Simmer, covered 3-6 hours.
  7. Let stock cool for 1-2 hours, fish out the large bits of bone & veggies with a slotted spoon.
  8. Strain stock through a cheesecloth and can or freeze until ready to use.

I’m planning on rocking out some Matzoh Ball Soup with mine! Check the recipe here.

** Endnote: I don’t always, but today I added a little dry white wine to the stock just before I added the water for a little depth of flavor. **

Post Turkey-Day Matzoh Ball Soup

Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like coughing & sneezing and nothing cures whatever ails you like homemade matzoh ball soup. Today I’m battling bronchitis & I made some delicious matzoh ball soup using some of the turkey stock I made from out Thanksgiving carcass. You can make this soup with canned stock or broth, but it will always be more delicious with homemade stock. Homemade stock is easy to make & costs pennies. This recipe made 5 quart size mason jars.

Easy Turkey Stock

  • turkey carcass, picked as clean as possible
  • turkey neck, but no giblets
  • 3 small carrots, rough chop, don’t peel
  • 3 ribs celery, rough chop
  • half a white onion, rough chop
  • about 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 5 qts cold water
  • a pinch or two of Kosher salt
  1. Heat EVOO in a large stockpot over medium-high heat.
  2. Put in carrots, celery, and onions. Sweat over medium-high heat until onions are translucent, about 5-7 mins.
  3. Put in your turkey carcass and neck and add water to cover. Season water with a few pinches of Kosher salt.
  4. Add the bay leaves.
  5. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  6. When stock reaches a rolling boil, cover, let simmer over medium-low heat 2-3 hours.
  7. Allow to cool then strain through colander and cheesecloth before putting into containers to freeze or into jars for canning.

This is the song I sing while rolling matzoh balls. Meatballs too, for that matter. 🙂

My matzoh ball soup making set-up.

My matzoh ball soup making set-up.

Post Turkey Day Matzoh Ball Soup

  • 3/4 C matzoh meal
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil, or schmaltz (rendered chicken fat)
  • 2 qts turkey stock
  • 3 parsnips, peeled, and roughly chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled, and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 a yellow onion, cut in half and then sliced
  • fresh dill, for garnish, if desired
  1. In a small bowl, mix together eggs & oil or schmaltz. Schmaltz is the classic way to make matzoh balls, but nowadays most people don’t keep rendered chicken fat lying around the house, so vegetable oil is fine.
  2. Add matzoh meal, and a pinch of kosher salt, if desired.
  3. Cover mixture and chill at least 1 hour.
  4. Put stock in a large pot on the stove top and begin heating over medium-high heat.
  5. Meanwhile, take your mixture out of the fridge and start rolling your matzoh balls onto a wax paper-covered baking sheet. Matzoh balls should be about 1 inch in diameter.

Matzoh balls rolled out ready to take a bath in the stock.

Matzoh balls rolled out ready to take a bath in the stock.

6. When stock comes to a rolling boil, add the matzoh balls. Lower heat to medium-high, cover tightly, and cook at a simmer for about 10 minutes.

7. Add in the carrots, parsnips, and onion. Cover, and cook 10-15 mins at medium-high heat.

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Matzoh balls and veggies cooking together.

8. To serve, put 2-3 matzoh balls in bowl and a few veggies. Pour broth over and garnish with fresh dill, if desired.