This month Dom has challenged us to make a vegetarian soup that can be shared on the Belleau Kitchen's Random Recipe challenge and on Tinned Tomatoes' No Croutons Required monthly challenge. Dom and Jacqui have chosen the perfect challenge for those of us entering 'soup season!
This is an easy challenge, if you have a copy of The Soup Bible. I picked this cookbook up this summer when our local Borders was having its closing sales ... sniff, sniff. I hated to see a bookstore closing, but was eager for the deals ... don't judge me. I felt bad picking through the cook book aisle, kind of like a gleaner at the end of harvest time. Many other images come to mind too , but we'll leave it at that.
Anyway, I've been leafing through the book and before it becomes impossible to get good peppers without selling your car to pay for them, I'm making this soup. Normally, I would exchange the vegetable broth and use chicken broth just because I'm a chicken broth kinda girl, but I'm playing by the rules here. It's still going to be a smooth, soft, slightly sweet soup. The only thing I'm adding is just a touch of basil, lemon thyme and a good dose of black pepper to bring in a zing.
This is an easy soup to increase or decrease ... I've reduced the amount, as I'm cooking for one while SB is on his hunting jaunt. While I love soup, I don't usually do more than one day's worth of leftovers unless I can turn them into something dramatically different than the original meal. What can I say? Soup's soup!
Tonight, I'm making some Ciabatta toasts, rubbing them with garlic, and drizzling olive oil over them when it comes time to dish up a bowl of the soup. I have a nice bottle of wine to break into and a favorite cheese to have with the toasts. Easy easy easy ... and meanwhile, the kitchen is smelling great and I am busily tending fires, sewing on my projects, and puttering away!
Roasted Pepper Soup
slightly adapted from The Soup Bible recipe
3 red peppers
1 yellow pepper
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large clove garlic, minced
3 c. vegetable stock
1 tbsp. flour
pinch dried basil
big pinch black pepper
leaves from two sprigs of lemon thyme
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
slivered yellow and red pepper for garnish
sour cream for garnish
Making the Soup:
1. Line a cookie sheet with foil and pre-heat the broiler.
2. Halve the peppers and remove the veins and seeds. Place the peppers skin sides up and broil until the skins blacken and bubble up.
3. Transfer the peppers to a plastic bag and seal it up for about ten minutes ... then, remove the peppers when you can handle them and peel the skins away. Roughly chop them and set them aside.
4. Put the onion and garlic into a soup pot with a large pinch of black pepper and 1 tbsp. olive oil ... cook over medium heat until the onion and garlic are sweated.
5. Add the flour and stir to make a rough roux, add the stock and stir to begin to thicken slightly.
6. Add the peppers, turn the heat way down and simmer the soup until the vegetables are very soft.
7. Strip the leaves from two sprigs of lemon thyme and add to the soup with the pinch of dried basil.
8. Turn the heat off and let the soup remain covered overnight in the fridge.
9. Reheat the soup gently and use a hand blender to create a smooth, soft consistency. Add the salt and a good amount of black pepper, to taste.
10. Sliver a small amount of red and yellow pepper for garnish.
11. Scoop some soup into a deep bowl and top with the slivered peppers and a dollop of sour cream. Serve with ... or without croutons!