Creamy Brussels Sprouts Soup

All of this rain has put me in the mood for some hot and creamy soup.  I know it’s still hot outside, but this is a great recipe for snuggling indoors and pretending it’s already autumn.  This recipe is also jam-packed full of calcium between the Brussels sprouts, the cheese, and the milk.

What  you need:

2 cups Brussels sprouts (frozen works fine)

1/2 cup water

1 cup whole milk or half and half

1/4 cup finely shredded cheese (I used sharp cheddar)

1/8 tsp. Hungarian hot paprika

1/2 tsp. kosher sea salt

1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

1 tsp. chopped parsley

1/8 tsp. garlic powder (garlic cloves would be too chunky and overpowering I think)

Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan and then add the Brussels sprouts.  Boil until sprouts are tender.  Pour water and sprouts into a food processor and pulse to desired consistency – about 30 seconds will yield a creamy soup with still a little tasty texture.  Return the Brussels sprouts purée to the saucepan and add milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.  Once the soup is hot, remove from the heat and melt in the cheese.  Garnish with parsley.

Green, calcium-rich, and belly-warming.


Cold Borscht? It’s better than it sounds…

It’s hot here – like really, really, really hot.  It’s too hot to slave in the kitchen all day for a hot Shabbat evening meal.  I found a recipe for cold borscht on Haaretz and thought what a great alternative to the gazpachos everyone goes crazy for in the summer (especially since I have yet to be convinced that there’s a difference between gazpacho and a really good salsa).  I’ve tweaked it a little since the original recipe was a little plain.  You could serve this with some some grilled white fish and grilled potatoes/veggies for a complete meal.  And did I mention that beets are good for you?

Here’s what you need:

5-6 medium beets, peeled

4 cups water

1tsp kosher salt

1/4tsp Hungarian hot paprika (I can’t say enough how much I love this stuff, and it’s packed with Vitamin C)

1tbsp sugar

1tbsp kosher balsamic vinegar

1tbsp lemon juice

1 1/2tsp lemon zest

1/2 tsp black pepper

In a pot arrange the peeled beets in water. Bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 45 minutes, or until the beets are fork-tender.  Remove the beets and purée.  Add black pepper and lemon zest to the beets and freeze into ice cubes.  Vigorously blend the salt, sugar, paprika, vinegar, and lemon juice into the remaining beet juice.  Chill for at least 4 hours and serve cold.  I recommend serving it in a fancy glass with the beet ice cubes mentioned above and a dollop of sour cream on top.

Healthy, pretty, and great in soup!

‘Cure-All’ Slowcooker Soup*

*Note: This soup is pretty awesome but does not actually ‘cure-all.’

What you’ll need:

1 large slow cooker

1lb shredded/chopped roasted turkey or chicken

6 carrots roughly chopped (I did 1/2 inch pieces)

2-3 stalks of celery roughly chopped

2-3 cloves garlic minced

1 large shallot diced

2tbsp olive oil (I was doing this kosher, so I used Halutz kosher oil from Israel.  It’s a little pricey, but the flavour is superb…it’s cold pressed with .05% acidity.)

1 carton vegetable stock

1tsp salt

2tsp pepper

3tsp Hungarian hot paprika

1 jar Manischewitz matzo balls in broth

Water (as needed)

Pour entire carton of vegetable stock into slow cooker and set on ‘high.’  Add turkey or chicken.  In a sautee pan, heat olive oil on medium high heat.  Sautee carrots in oil until they begin to soften and then add celery.  Season with salt, pepper, and paprika.  Once celery begins to soften, add minced garlic and diced shallot.  Once shallots have become translucent, add contents of sautee pan to slow cooker.  Stir.  Add enough water until the liquid is about 2 inches from the top of the slow cooker.  After about 1/2 hour, turn down slow cooker to ‘low’ and add all contents of the jar of Manischewitz matzo balls.  After about another 1/2 hour, turn slow cooker to ‘warm.’  Soup can be kept this way basically until it’s gone.  That way you have awesome soup anytime you need it.

The matzo balls get a great flavour the longer you leave them in the soup and they don’t fall apart as long as you stir gently every so often.

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