Sunday, March 16, 2008

My Year In Soup-Week 11


This week's soup is a lighter/healthier soup. I checked out a bunch of recipe books featuring soups from the library and stumbled across this week's soup, Celery and Tomato Soup Aurore. Being a huge fan of celery, I thought it would be worth a try. Aurore, I learned, is a term associated with sauces that have tomato puree or concasse (chopped veggies) added to it.

Before I begin, I have to give a "shout out" to being able to buy in bulk. Check out how much I paid for the celery seed in this recipe:
4 cents!!! And I bought way more than I needed. It is so nice to just buy the amounts needed for herbs and spices not often used.

Celery and Tomato Soup Aurore

Source: The Dairy Hollow House Soup & Bread: A Country Inn Cookbook
Serves: 2 -3
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:
Pam Cooking Spray
1 tablespoon of butter
1/2 large onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/2 bunch celery, washed well and coarsely chopped
leaves from 1/2 bunch celery, chopped
1 ripe tomato, coarsely chopped
1 tart apple, unpeeled, cored, and coarsely chopped
2-3 cups chicken stock
2 tablespoons brandy
2 teaspoons honey
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 tablespoon water

Sour cream, yogurt; or Creme Fraiche (optional)
sprigs of celery leaf for garnish

1. Spray a heavy 10 inch skillet with Pam, and in it melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the celery seeds and celery leaves and stir fry just until coated with butter (about 1 minute). Add the tomatoes and apples and raise the heat slightly, cooking and stirring until the tomatoes have begun to give up their juice, about 5 minutes.

2. Spray a large heavy enameled pot with Pam and transfer the saute to it. Add the chicken stock, brandy, and honey. Deglaze the skillet with a little stock, and scrape the pan contents into the pot. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat to medium-low, and let simmer, covered until the vegetables are quie soft, about 30 minutes. Let the soup cool slightly, then drain, reserving both the solids and the liquids.

3. Put the solids in a food processor and puree, then strain the puree. Return this very smooth puree to the strained liquid, and reheat to a neat boil. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

4. Combine the cornstarch with the water, smashing the mixture with your fingers until it's absolutely smooth. Ladle a bit of the hot soup into the cornstarch paste, whisk, the whisk the mixture into the hout soup. Cook, stirring constantly, until the soup is slightly thickened and all the raw cornstarch flavor is gone. If the soup is very hot, thickeneing may take place almost instantly; otherwise, it will take 2 to 3 minutes.

5. Serve immediately garnished with sour cream and a sprig of celery leaf.

My Notes:
  • I wrote the recipe as it was stated in the book, (although halved the ingredients) but I strayed a bit while making it. I did everything in one pot and didn't use the separate skillet for sauteing. I also didn't think my tomatoes were tomato-ey enough and added some tomato paste which I think caused it to be more red in color than it was suppose to.
  • When it came to the straining part, I just used my immersion blender and blended the soup in the pot and then strained the solids out using a fine-mesh strainer.
  • My opinion? hmmmm....It seemed like a lot of work for a soup like this. It was good and I ate all of it. I also enjoyed the healthy aspect to it. It's a a great way to feel full with few calories/fat. Pair a cup of this soup with a sandwich and you'll get a lot of bang for your buck calorie/fat wise.
  • If I were to make it again, I'd try this less fussy version I found online.

3 Comments:

At 3/17/2008 , Blogger Kaye said...

Mmm...it looks good. But you're right sometimes they're unnecessarily fussy.

 
At 3/17/2008 , Anonymous Susan said...

Oooh. I love soup. We had baked potato soup for dinner. Yummy!

 
At 3/22/2008 , Blogger KamaLee said...

I love soup too and also Crescent's cookbooks. Yeah sometimes her recipes are a little fussy but they always work and oh they are so good. There is a yellow squash soup, chilled, with lemon in The Passionate Vegetarian, which we made and ate all last summer. From Soup & Bread we love Cuban Black Bean, the lentil & spinach, and the chicken w/ winter veg & pasta.

She has a new cookbook out which DH gave as new year's present. (DH is massive cornbread lover). It is The Cornbread Gospels (www.cornbreadgospels.com). Cooking my way through it & reading it. Both are a pleasure.

 

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