Category Archives: Soup

Cauliflower Cheese Soup

This post really goes hand in hand with one I had recently – there is just so much to do with cauliflower.  Combine that with this rainy, cold, dreary, dark weather, and it is definitely soup season.

Cauliflower Cheese Soup

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 head cauliflower, trimmed and chopped
  • 8 cups veggie or chicken broth or stock
  • 1 cup cream
  • 8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese

In a large pot, sweat celery, carrots, and onion and a pinch of salt with butter over medium heat for about 12 minutes.  Sprinkle with flour and mix very well and let cook about 2-3 minutes.  Slowly pour in broth/stock and cauliflower and bring to a light boil.  Season with some salt and pepper.  Let cook with a very low boil about 40 minutes.  Once veggies are tender, puree soup either in a blender in batches or in the pot with an immersion blender until very smooth.

Return to stove and turn heat to medium  to medium low (you don’t want soup to boil at this point because the cream could make it break).  Add cream and cheese and whisk together and let melt.  Season with any additional salt and pepper and let flavors come together.  Serve with a little grated cheese on top.

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Clam, Grouper, and Oyster Bouillabaisse (or, at least, my version of it)

This is one of my favorite go-to seafood recipes when I want something super flavorful and fulfilling, but relatively quick and easy. (Is it even a bouillabaisse?  Or more of just a seafood stew?)  Regardless, I like it and its versatile.  Use whatever fresh seafood is available, and sometimes I even like to add sausage to it.  Fennel can be a nice addition, too.

Clam, Grouper, and Oyster Bouillabaisse

Serves 4

  • 1/2 pound oysters
  • 1/2 pound grouper, cut into chunks
  • Clams (I don’t know the pound, but I know we bought it as a bag of about 50 clams)
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 green or red pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup white wine + 1 other cup of white wine
  • 1 cup broth/stock (veggie, chicken, fish, whatever you have) + 1 more cups broth/stock
  • 1/2 pound small/new potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • Handful of chopped fresh mixed herbs if you have them

Cook potatoes in a pot of salted boiling water until just cooked through, about 8 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

In a large pot (I use an enameled cast iron pot), sweat the onions, peppers, and garlic  with the butter and olive oil over medium heat for about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.  Add white wine and let reduce by about half.  Add 1 cup of stock/broth and add oysters and fish.  Season with salt and pepper. Let cook about 3 minutes minutes and add potatoes and let cook another minute longer.

In meantime (like while peppers are sweating), get clams started. Combine one cup wine and one cup broth in large pot with clams over medium high heat.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Let cook for about 4-6 minutes until clams open.  (If you have a steamer insert for the pan, use that for the clams – it makes transferring them to the big stew much easier.)  As clams open, transfer them to big pot of stew.  Some clams will take longer than others to open, but discard any that don’t open at all.

Steamy, delicious stew

Add about 1-2 cups of the clam’s broth to the stew.  Add herbs if using and season with any extra salt and pepper.  Serve in big bowls with good crusty bread to sop up all the juices.

Gazpacho, Version #2

Fresh vegetables, summertime, yada, yada, yada, it’s all I talk about, I know. And I know I just did gazpacho, but seriously how can I possibly get sick of it this time of year? But I think that everyone is on the same page as me with this!

Gazpacho with Cilantro and Avocado Cream

Gazpacho with Avocado Cream

  • 8 tomatillos, halved
  • 5 medium sized tomatoes, rough chopped, set in a colander to drain for about 20 minutes
  • 2 green peppers, rough chopped
  • 3 jalapenos (remove seeds and ribs if you prefer less spice), chopped
  • 1 small red onion, rough chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, seeds scraped out, rough chopped
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, stems picked out
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Avocado Cream, recipe below

In a large bowl, combine tomatillos, tomatoes, green peppers, jalapenos, onion, garlic, and cucumber. Mix all up so evenly distributed.  Add half of veggie mixture to food processor.  Process until somewhat smooth and frothy. Add 1/2 of the cilantro, 1/2 of lime juice, 1/2 of vinegar, and half of olive oil.  Season.  Transfer to serving bowl, and put all remaining ingredients (except Avocado Cream) into processor and process until smooth-ish and frothy. Combine with other gazpacho.  Chill at least 20 minutes.  Serve in bowls with a big dollop of avocado cream and a few sprigs of cilantro.

Avocado Cream

  • 1 avocado, removed from skin, pit removed
  • 2 heaping tablespoons sour cream
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Mix avocado, sour cream, lime juice, and cilantro in food processor.  Slowly pour in olive oil. Season with just a bit of salt and pepper.

Gazpacho with Ricotta Crostina

Ever since having gazpacho the other weekend at the Hubbard Inn and posting about it, I have been craving it.  We finally have ripe tomatoes in our garden, so I decided it was time to make a batch.  I essentially just decided to copy the whole idea and presentation from Hubbard Inn since I loved it so much.

Gazpacho just like Hubbard Inn's!

Gazpacho

About 4 servings

  • 3 large tomatoes
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and seeds removed
  • 1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed
  • 1 green or red bell pepper, stem and seeds removed
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Herbed Ricotta Crostini (recipe below)

Core tomatoes and cut in half long-wise and then into quarters.  Pull/squeeze out seeds and juicy pulp. Roughly chop, throw in a colander, and season with some salt.  Set colander with tomatoes in sink and let excess water drain from tomatoes for about 15 minutes (the salt will help to draw out the excess water).  Shake tomatoes around in colander as needed to help get out the excess water.  (Leaving all those seeds and extra watery pulp in the tomatoes just makes the gazpacho more thin and watery than what it should be).

Roughly chop cucumber, jalapeno, bell pepper, and onion, and toss into bowl of food processor.  Toss in tomatoes, too.  Process in food processor until fairly smooth, but not 100% liquified.  Mix in vinegar and olive oil.  Transfer to a bowl and whisk in salt and pepper.  The gazpacho will take a decent bit of salt as tomatoes can absorb lots of salt. (If there are too many veggies to do all at once in the food processor, mix all veggies up in a bowl so they are evenly distributed, and then puree them in processor in two batches, using half the vinegar and olive oil for each batch).

Pop the soup in the fridge for about 20 minutes to chill it.

Serve in bowl with a drizzle of olive oil and the crostini

Herbed Ricotta Crostini

  • 1/2 cup ricotta
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 baguette, sliced on the diagonal

Mix ricotta, herbs, and olive oil, and season generously with salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Toast bread slices in 350 degree oven for about 5 -6 minutes.  Smear with ricotta mixture when they come out and serve with gazpacho.