a flight of blended soups

October 22nd, 2007 · 22 Comments

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3 soups in one day?  ambitious?  perhaps.  but i was hell bent on getting through this mountain of produce that was somehow all mine.  and soups are a good way to go when faced with an overbearing bounty.  i opted first for the bittman pear zucchini, then a riff off an aubergine soup i’d seen that i refer to as mediterranean eggplant and finally a buttermilk butternut squash creation that was inspired by JO (you know who you are…).  even in a baking recipe, i rarely can follow along verbatim although i did stay loyal to mark.  mark, i hang on your every ingredient.  you are so my kinda cook.

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the pear in the zucchini soup is more subtle than i expected.  it gives it a certain mellow sweetness and flavor that marries well with the zucchini.  it’s a sautee of onion, carrot and potato, the latter giving it it’s creamy texture – and of course pears and zucchini.  a lot of zucchini…  i opted to serve it room temperature as i felt it brought out the flavor of the pear more.  to finish i sprinkled this soup generously with fresh chopped mint. 

there is not one zucchini left in my house.  thank you jesus.

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next up was the eggplant soup.  a quick sautee of shallots and garlic in olive oil and then the diced eggplant is added to the pan on low heat.  cook this down for about 30 minutes or so and then add salt and chicken stock.  cool it down, transfer to a blender and puree until it’s smooth.  then add it back to your pan along with the juice of half a lemon, full fat greek yogurt and chopped parsley. 

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i opted to top this with the suggested gremolata and added a fine chop of tomato for color and flavor.  i saw it presented with a healthy slice of buffalo mozzarella – one of my favorite cheeses in the world – but i opted to keep it lighter.  the original recipe also calls for butter and cream.  and i’m sure it’s amazing.  but this version was meant to be a bit more lean while still staying big on flavor.

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and last, i love butternut squash.  which is lucky for me because before i began this soup i had 8 of them in my house.  i am currently down to 4.  i like to think of this as progress.  i diced a few of them up and they were added to a sautee of onion and garlic.  i added chicken stock and seasoned with fresh thyme, salt and pepper. 

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i let the squash soften and after cooling down, pureed the mixture with a cup of buttermilk.  to serve i garnished with a swirl of greek honey and some fried sage leaves.

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and i’ve got to hand it to cary, a truly good boyfriend who not only shopped with me, took a bunch of the final photo’s AND cleaned the entire kitchen – but he ate 3 bowls of soup for dinner.  happily.

and that right there deems him a keeper.

Tags: soup · vegetables

22 responses so far ↓

  • 1 cookiecrumb // Oct 22, 2007 at 1:24 pm

    A “flight” of soups!!! I love you.
    I love soup.
    Love, love, love.
    Wow, how pretty and ambitious, and… honey?
    Wow.

  • 2 Summer // Oct 22, 2007 at 1:25 pm

    Beautiful. Today is our first true fall-feeling day (58 degrees) and I’ve had soup on my mind all day!!!

  • 3 newscoma // Oct 22, 2007 at 1:35 pm

    I love butternut squash soup. Now, I might just try to make it myself, however, I am known to burn toast.

  • 4 Klinde // Oct 22, 2007 at 2:00 pm

    I love soup weather (though we are still kinda not quite at what I consider soup weather). I must learn to make the butternut squash soup as it looks divine!

  • 5 lcreekmo // Oct 22, 2007 at 7:22 pm

    You weren’t kidding about the soups. But I think these all look worthy of the time and attention. :)

  • 6 ponyboat // Oct 22, 2007 at 7:50 pm

    Mmm, mmm good! I can’t wait till my next invite! (Um, I’m free Monday night and I’ll bring you all the squash you want. I’ll even roast em for you!)

    Cary is a treasure alright, a real good man!

  • 7 alec // Oct 23, 2007 at 5:58 am

    OH man. I love flights of anything. This looks awesome. I may try them one at a time … but they all look delicious!

  • 8 Music City Bloggers » Blog Archive » Blame It On The Rain // Oct 23, 2007 at 10:03 am

    [...] (sick, I swear, truant officers!) from school and we’re going to have potato soup for lunch (though I am totally digging Claudia’s soups and wish she was here to cook) and play Muppet Party Cruise and have a good ol’ time. Klinde’s not so keen on the [...]

  • 9 Lesley // Oct 23, 2007 at 10:10 am

    The soups look delicious. And I bet they’d be great with a vegetable stock instead of chicken stock. ;)

  • 10 Butta Buns // Oct 23, 2007 at 10:17 am

    What a great triple whammy! They all look so good.

    Question about the eggplant…..are the skins noticable if you don’t peel them? I’ve never had eggplant before and wonder if they’re like pepper skins, a real pain in the arse if they’re not removed before being pureed.

    Great job!

  • 11 nm // Oct 23, 2007 at 10:48 am

    They all look and sound gorgeous. Do you think the butternut soup and the zucchini soup would taste right if swirled into each other a bit? I ask because I’m always looking for two soups that could be sort of marbleized into each other to look lovely without tasting wierd. And I’ve never found them….

  • 12 claudia // Oct 23, 2007 at 11:36 am

    cookie – glad you appreciate my attempt at classiness… !

    summer – and low fat and low calorie and high fiber – etc etc etc

    newscoma – hard to blow a soup

    klinde – so easy – so many variations

    lcreekmo – i have a handy dandy chopper thing that made this exercise pretty painless

    pony – you show up here with a vegetable and i’ll beat you to death with it…

    alec – i’m home this week and the temp dropped and it’s rainy… this worked out for me!

    lesley – the zucchini pear was vegetarian and the squash was made 2x – one with vegetable broth and one with chicken. my friend was here and she’s a veggie…

    butta – skins stayed on. a vitamix has some serious rpm’s…

    nm – hmmm – i’d have to think about a good duo. that one would definitely be ok. and it would look gorgeous… excellent idea. i might have to use that sometime.

  • 13 jim voorhies // Oct 23, 2007 at 11:52 am

    The pear and zucchini one sounds great and so does the butternut one. Eggplant and portabella mushroms might go well together – if you don’t clean the ‘shrooms well, they’d both provide a dismal gray color to the soup. :)

  • 14 nm // Oct 23, 2007 at 12:00 pm

    Claudia, it’s not my idea. I came across it as a throwaway piece of stage setting in a science fiction novel, of all places, and have been trying to create it ever since. I originally wanted to have a thin soup mixed into a thick one, but that unquestionably didn’t work. It just made the thick soup watery, and the thin one disappeared. So now, when I remember, I think about combining two thick soups. I have actually tried combining zucchini and pumpkin soups, but that was too bitter. The zucchini and pear soup might be sweet enough, though.

  • 15 Julie // Oct 23, 2007 at 1:47 pm

    there is not one zucchini left in my house. thank you jesus. Heh!

    The butternut squash soup is gorgeous.

  • 16 amybakes // Oct 23, 2007 at 2:24 pm

    I noticed a few of your post’s on the nashville scene bites website…I’m also a Jewish northeasterner who loves food…would love to eat one with our men one night!

  • 17 FireDog // Oct 23, 2007 at 3:32 pm

    Beautiful…. gorgeous……. Elegant!

  • 18 Christina // Oct 23, 2007 at 11:18 pm

    I’d say both the recipes and the boyfriend sound like keepers, boyfriend especially.

    Nice collection of soups–thanks for sharing them!

  • 19 clumsy // Oct 24, 2007 at 8:02 am

    Oh, I was scoping out that Bittman recipe but didn’t try it because I thought the pear would be overpowering. Now with your good review, I’ll have to give it a go!

  • 20 trixy // Oct 25, 2007 at 10:25 am

    Beautiful photos and a lovely site.

  • 21 claudia // Oct 25, 2007 at 3:05 pm

    thank you trixy – i’m so glad that you stopped by. i hope to see you here again!

  • 22 Websites tagged "markbittman" on Postsaver // Mar 22, 2009 at 2:02 pm

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