Cream of Spinach Soup


A rich and creamy spinach soup based on a Martha Stewart recipe.


Yields: 6-8 servings, Total Time: 45 mins


WHAT YOU NEED:

1 bowl of fresh spinach, trimmed

1 bowl of baby spinach

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

5 tbsp unsalted butter 

1/3 cup all purpose flour

3 cups chicken/vegetable stock

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 tbsp salt

2 tsp freshly ground black pepper


WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO:

1. Blanch spinach - Boil the fresh spinach, and the baby spinach in a pot of water for 5 minutes, or until the spinach wilts. Remove the spinach, and immerse it in cold water for a few seconds. Squeeze it to drain out excess water. Set aside.

2. In another pot, melt the butter over a low flame. Add the onions, and increase the heat to a medium - low flame. Heat until the onions turn translucent in color.

3. Slowly add flour, while continuously stirring for a minute. Now add the stock, and keep stirring. Reduce the heat to a low flame, and let it simmer for 10 mins, occasionally stirring to avoid the formation of lumps.

4. In a blender or a food processor, add the blanched spinach and the flour mixture in batches, and puree until smooth. Pass the pureed mixture through a sieve into a pot.

5. Heat the pot over a low flame. Add  heavy cream, and stir well. Add salt and pepper. Let it heat for about 2-3 minutes.

6. Garnish with heavy cream before serving.


TIP:

If you can’t get ready made chicken stock, don’t fret, you can just make it at home. It’s really simple. Follow this recipe - In a huge vessel add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and on a medium flame fry 2 medium chopped onions, 2 chopped carrots, 1 chopped celery along with the leaves, and one small chopped cauliflower. After 10 mins, add leftover raw pieces of the chicken leg and wings (cut into 2). Mix well and after 5 mins add approximately 7-8 glasses of water. Add 2 cubes of chicken maggi cubes, and salt to taste. Stir well. Cover and let it simmer on a medium slow flame for about an hour. After an hour, strain the water out of this mixture and set aside. Lo and behold! You've home-made chicken stock. Save the excess stock in containers for future use.


Cream of Tomato Soup with Homemade Croutons


Creamy tomato soup seasoned with basil and homemade croutons. Based on an Ina Garten recipe.


Yields: 4-6 servings, Total Time: 1 hr 15 mins


What you need For the tomato soup:

2 medium red onions, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

4 large tomatoes, chopped

4 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tbsp tomato paste

2 1/2 cups chicken/ vegetable stock

1/4 cup basil leaves, chopped 

1/4 cup heavy cream

What you need for the homemade Croutons:

3 slices of old bread, toasted and cubed

2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp basil powder

4 tbsp olive oil

Salt, Pepper

 


What you have to do for the tomato soup:

1.  In a large pot, heat olive oil over a medium flame. Add onions and carrots, and sauté for about 10 mins. Add garlic, and let it cook for a minute. 

2.  Add tomatoes, tomato paste, chopped basil leavesstock, 1 tbsp salt, and 2 tsp pepper. Stir well.

3.  Bring the soup to a boil. Then lower the flame, and let it simmer for around 30 - 40 minutes.

4.  Pour the soup into a blender/food processor, and blend till you get a smooth mixture. Pass this mixture through a sieve to drain out the liquid. Don’t get rid of the pulp yet. It makes a good sauce/chutney.

5.  Heat the liquid in a smaller pot over low heat. Add the cream, and stir well. Cook for 2 - 3 mins. Garnish with julienned basil leaves, and croutons.

What you have to do for the homemade croutons:

1.  In a pan, heat a few teaspoons of olive oil, over a low flame. 

2.  Add the toasted cubed bread. Sprinkle garlic powderbasil powder, and mix well. Let it heat for a minute or two. Finally, add a dash of salt and pepper, and serve it with the soup.


TIP:

If you can’t get ready made chicken stock, don’t fret, you can just make it at home. It’s really simple. Follow this recipe - In a huge vessel add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and on a medium flame fry 2 medium chopped onions, 2 chopped carrots, 1 chopped celery along with the leaves, and one small chopped cauliflower. After 10 mins, add leftover raw pieces of the chicken leg and wings (cut into 2). Mix well and after 5 mins add approximately 7-8 glasses of water. Add 2 cubes of chicken maggi cubes, and salt to taste. Stir well. Cover and let it simmer on a medium slow flame for about an hour. After an hour, strain the water out of this mixture and set aside. Lo and behold! You've home-made chicken stock. Save the excess stock in containers for future use.