Friday, January 15, 2010

Weekends with Julia ~ Soupe Au Pistou

Soupe Au Pistou (Soup of "Kings" )
by Julia Child (an adaptation by Brian )

I was drawn to this particular recipe by the ingredients (and the fact that it was 'wicked' cold out when I was contemplating making it). I also recognized the word "pistou" as having a Greek meaning so I was intrigued. I studied Greek in college and occasionally words that find their origin in Greek catch my eye.

As far as this particular recipe's changes are concerned, I will readily admit that I am more of a "Chunky Soup" vs. a regular (Campbells) soup guy. My alterations are generally meant to make the soup more hearty. In addition, I tend to favor flavors that I like and discard those I don't (I am selfish, I know:).

The results of this particular recipe were especially good. This is probably due to the fact that I didn't alter the recipe too much to my tastes. It makes a lot of soup so be prepared to freeze it in portions for use later in the winter when the temperature dips below zero (hopefully this NEVER happens to you).


3 quarts water
3 cups each diced: Carrots, potatoes, onions (I increased these from the original and did more of a rough chop vs. dice)
1 tbs salt

Boil the ingredients above slowly for roughly 40 minutes.

2 cups diced fresh green beans
2 14oz. cans Great Northern Beans
1 tsp. pepper

20 minutes prior to serving add the ingredients above and boil slowly for 15 min. Test for salt and seasoning. In the original recipe, broken spaghetti and a slice of stale bread is added. I skipped this step because I knew that if I added the pasta or bread the longevity of the soup might be lessened (soggy bread and over cooked pasta don't appeal to me from a left-over standpoint).

While the above is cooking, prepare the "pistou". Blend the ingredients into a paste in an electric chopper or food processor.

4-6 cloves mashed garlic (I love garlic and almost always double it. Dial this back if you want or if you are scared;).
6 tbs. Tomato paste (I don't normally like tomato paste in anything but it was acceptable in this recipe and actually surprisingly good.)
1/4 cup fresh Basil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup olive oil

When the "pistou" paste is ready, whisk slowly into the soup and simmer for 15 min. to allow the flavors to blend. Adjust seasoning accordingly ( i.e. add salt if you are a salt-aholic like my lovely wife or pepper if you are spice freak like me).

I am sure you will like this soup. If you have a particular vegetable that you really like and you think that it would be good in it, add it. You really can't screw it up. Just keep in mind that heartier vegetables (cauliflower) need more time to cook than dainty ones (spinach) and add the more delicate ones later in the process ;)

Bon Appetite.

1 comment:

Vivi said...

Wow - that sounds and looks great. I love soup...especially when it's freeeeeeezing out! Thanks for the new recipe!

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