Food

Trio of Soup: Tarragon Pea, Curried Carrot & Roasted Tomato

My boyfriend is a candy fiend. He likes them all – jellies, taffies, gummies, rocks – and at all times. I found him a couple times fast asleep while clutching a bag of insert candy of the day here. So it wasn’t an absolute shocker when he was told by his dentist about a week ago that he needed six root canals. The real shocker was that my boyfriend went to his next appointment for his first three root canals and decided that he might as well just get it all over with. Six root canals in one sitting. Nucking futs.

Like the caring selfless girlfriend that I am, I decided to turn all this into a bloggable event. I picked up some pretty tea cups, decided on three different kinds of soup and documented the whole thing. All for my boyfriend.

Tarragon Pea Soup

I had a lot more peas than the original recipe states so I adjusted the rest of the ingredients as I saw fit. Once I started pureeing it in the blender, it became obvious that I had way too much liquid and I had to throw out maybe half of it to achieve the consistency that I wanted. I shouldn’t have sneaked in the leftover milk I had in the fridge. On the bright side, the consistency is easy to correct since you’ll be pureeing this in batches. Oh, and no Parma breadsticks for us.

For the tarragon pea soup, you’ll need:

600 g frozen peas

1 large onion

butter (about 2 T)

1 L chicken stock

a small bunch of tarragon (I used about 2 T)

142 mL cream

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Thaw the frozen peas and put them on a strainer to drain. Chop the onions. Melt the butter in a large pot and throw in the onions. Cook until they turn translucent.

2. Add stock, peas and chopped tarragon and leave to simmer for about 3 minutes. I don’t cook much with tarragon so this was really the first time I had a moment with it. It’s really unlike anything although it smells kinda like licorice.

3. When done, add the cream. Remove from the stove and puree in batches in a blender. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

 

Curried Carrot Soup

This soup was delightfully easy to make! I went through some of the comments on this recipe and decided to reduce the curry powder (much easier to adjust something you have too little of instead of too much) and add some cumin instead of cayenne pepper because I didn’t have any. I would’ve added cumin with or without the cayenne, really.

To make curried carrot soup, you’ll need:

4 large carrots

1 T olive oil

2 T butter

1 medium onion

6 cups chicken stock

1 generous T curry powder

1 1/2 t ground cumin

salt to taste

cream to garnish

1. Melt the butter in olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add in chopped onions and carrots and cook for about 15 minutes. That’s much longer than the original recipe states. One of the commenters pointed out that the longer they’re cooked like this the better the caramelization will be. Sounds good to me.

2. Add in 4 cups of the stock, curry powder, cumin and about a teaspoon of salt. Once it comes to a boil, cover and simmer until the carrots are tender, about 15 minutes. When done, puree in batches in a blender. The leftover stock is for you to adjust the consistency. You can bring the pureed soup back into the pot and do that as well as adjust the seasoning.

 

Roasted Tomato Soup

Last but definitely not least in flavor is this roasted tomato soup. It turned out a bit too tart for my taste but that’s adjustable with some stock and salt so no problem. I added some Italian seasoning but opted not to use cream since I already had a creamy soup in the mix.

To make, you’ll need:

1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes

olive oil (1/4 cup as stated is too much. Drizzle as you see fit.)

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 stalk celery

1 small carrot

1 medium onion

2 cloves garlic

1 cup chicken stock

1 bay leaf

2 T butter

a dash Italian seasoning

1/4 cup basil

 

1. Drain the diced tomatoes on a strainer set on top of a bowl. Set aside tomato juice for later. Spread out the drained tomatoes on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and roast in an oven preheated to 230 C/450F. Original recipe says they should be done in about 15 minutes but I found that mine took much longer and even then not quite satisfactorily roasted. Probably because they go in the oven still pretty wet. This is how they looked after about 30 minutes in the oven. I would have liked to char them more but my boyfriend was gonna be home soon so I had to make do.

2. While the tomatoes are roasting, chop up the celery, carrots, onions and garlic. Heat some olive oil in a medium saucepan. When ready, add in all the vegetables and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.

3. Add in chicken stock, reserved tomato juice, butter, bay leaf, Italian seasoning and roasted tomatoes. Cover and simmer until all the vegetables are very tender, about 15 minutes.

4. When done, remove from heat and add in chopped basil. Discard the bay leaf and puree in a blender.

I poured each soup into a tea cup and garnished the pea soup with a lone tarragon leaf, the tomato soup with basil and the carrot soup with a sloppy swirl of cream fanned outwards with a chopstick. For a more elegant result, make sure the swirl is much thinner and use a toothpick.

The tarragon pea is a little boring. I see why the original recipe included Parma bread sticks. And I’m on the fence about tarragon. I can see how it could be good in some other preparation but I don’t think this was it. The curried carrot is delicious. It’s so sweet that for a second I wondered if I put sugar in it! I had to marvel at the natural sweetness of carrots and onions. The roasted tomato is really good, too. I couldn’t resist and had to have some this morning with a grilled cheese sandwich. Off the charts.

Oh, and the boyfriend! He’s recovering nicely while I look into other bloggable non-solid foods to make for him, thank you.

 

Fun Food Fact: Food for babies, geriatrics and root canal patients are interchangeable.

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2 replies »

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