Up until two days ago, I was thinking about making milkshakes, had put away my gloves, and was watching some crocus bulbs come up in my yard. Yes, it was January, but it felt like spring on the West Coast, and after an unexpected long spell of cold weather and snow, it was very welcome.
Today I opened by back door to this view. Yes, we had been warned, but we were really crossing our fingers that this bit of snow was going to pass us by.
That doesn’t seem to be the case, so instead of my planned post on making marvelous and unique milkshakes, I’m diving straight into soup recipes. We could all use a little warming up at this point, and if you have a big stock pot you can make a huge batch. Or, when you’re in a rush, you can let your soup simmer all day in your slow cooker.
What I’ve noticed about soup over the past few years is that it’s anything but traditional. Flavoured with spices, doused with noodles, and packed with vegetables; the latest soup recipes really are a meal all on their own. All you need is a side salad, a nice crusty loaf of bread, and you’ve got a great meal for a cold night.
Here are a few of my favourite soup recipes, and if you have any of your own, be sure to share in the comments. I’m always looking for hot recipes to warm up with on cold days like these.
Disneyland Tomato Basil Soup
Tomato Basil soup is one of my favourite dishes when I go to Disneyland. You can find it at the Jolly Holiday on Main Street, and it’s usually served with grilled cheese. I was pretty excited to find this recipe for it online, and if you’ve ever had that soup you’ll be happy to know that this is a very close replica. Recipe from allears.net.
1 stick butter
2 carrots, roughly chopped
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 stalk celery, roughly chopped
1 leek, washed well, roughly chopped
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup malt vinegar
1 (12-ounce) can tomato paste
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
5 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
1 (14.5-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup chopped basil
Garnish: cracked black pepper, sour cream, and croutons
1. Melt butter in a large stockpot over medium heat until foamy. Add carrots, onion, and celery. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Sauté until onions are translucent, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic, and sauté until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
2. Add tomato paste to sautéed vegetables. Cook until mixture is thick and slightly dry, about 3 minutes, stirring often. Sprinkle flour over mixture, stirring to combine. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes.
3. Slowly pour in vegetable stock, whisking until smooth. Add crushed tomatoes and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, whisking to combine. Cover, and increase heat to high; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 40 minutes, occasionally whisking and scraping bottom of pot to keep from scalding.
4. Meanwhile, combine brown sugar and vinegar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until mixture is syrupy and reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Set aside.
5. Add cream and basil to soup, stirring to combine. Add reserved sugar-vinegar mixture, stirring to combine. Purée soup in the pot using a hand blender; alternatively, puree soup in batches with a regular blender. Pour pureed soup through a fine-mesh sieve into a separate stockpot or serving bowl.
6. Garnish each serving with cracked black pepper, sour cream, and croutons.
Chicken Parm Soup Recipe
Up until a few weeks ago I had never tried a soup like this Chicken Parm Soup, but I’m so glad I did. This is more of a meal than other soups, but it’s worth the effort. Photo and recipe from Delish.com.
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 15-oz can diced or crushed tomatoes
6 c. low-sodium chicken broth
8 oz. (half box) penne
12 oz. breaded chicken (cooked and cut into 1″ pieces) or cooked boneless skinless chicken breasts (cubed)
1 1/2 c. shredded mozzarella
1 c. freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish
1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley, plus more for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
- In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender and golden, 6 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more. Stir in tomato paste and crushed red pepper flakes.
- Add canned tomatoes and chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Add penne and cook until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes, then add chicken, mozzarella, Parmesan, and parsley and season generously with salt and pepper. Let cheese melt, then ladle into bowls.
- Serve topped with more Parmesan and parsley.
Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe
A winter staple when you’re feeling under the weather or just tired of the cold, this Chicken Noodle Soup recipe will be better than anything you’ve ever had from a can. Photo and recipe from Country Living.
1 Whole Chicken
3 qt. low-sodium chicken broth
4 stalk celery
3 medium onions
5 black peppercorns
1 clove garlic
10 sprig parsley
2 sprig thyme
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. fresh-ground pepper
3 c. medium egg noodles
Make the stock: Place the chicken and chicken broth in a large stockpot and set it over medium heat. Roughly chop 2 carrots, 2 celery ribs, and 1 onion and add to the broth. Add the peppercorns, garlic, 2 sprigs of parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and enough water to just cover the chicken. Bring the broth to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until the chicken is very tender — about 1 1/4 hours — skimming the surface periodically. Remove the chicken and place in a large bowl. Strain the broth through a very fine sieve into a large, clean bowl or stockpot. Discard the vegetables.
Make the soup: Skim any fat off the top of the strained broth and discard. Slice the remaining carrots, celery, onions, and leeks into 1/4-inch-thick pieces and set aside. Remove and discard the skin and bones from the chicken, cut meat into 1/2-inch pieces, and set aside. Chop the remaining parsley leaves and set aside. Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the vegetables and cook until the onions are translucent — about 7 minutes. Add the chicken, the reserved broth, salt, and pepper. Simmer the soup until the vegetables are tender — about 1 hour. Stir in the egg noodles and parsley and cook until the noodles are tender — about 10 more minutes.
These are three great soup recipes you can make this weekend. Check out a few of my favourite kitchen gadgets you can use to make soup.