Category Archives: Soups

Soup So Good It’ll Make You Cry

It has been FREEZING in NY this past week, and I know I’m from Albany where 20°F sounds a lot like summer, but since living in NY I have learned to seriously hate the cold weather. I guess it’s because I’m not hopping from my toasty house to the preheated car to another warm destination where I usually stay put. In NY, everything is a schlep, and in the winter…everything is a schlep with freezing cold ears.

And now I know I’m not the #1 person to look at a glass half full (unless it’s filled with dc), but one thing I do love about the winter is soup. And hot cocoa.

My Mom would always make French Onion Soup on shavuot. We never ate much dairy in my house, and since F.O.S (did you see what I did there?) is normally topped with a slice of baguette and mozzarella cheese – it clearly belonged to the dairy holiday. Now that I am married to a cheese-lover, F.O.S has become a midweek winter dinner. I would have liked to share my mama’s recipe, but the 7 hour time difference isn’t always the most convenient, and there is a F.O.S recipe in the new cookbook we got last week. So here it is: (By Leah Schapira, people)

For 4 servings:

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Tbs butter (oil for parve..although I would try margarine)
  • 3 Large onions, kept whole, thinly sliced (or 6 small onions..and probably 4 medium)
  • 1 1/2 Tbs flour
  • 4 Tbs beef flavored consomme
  • 6 Cups boiling water
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1/4 Cup red wine
  • Baguettes (optional..you can also use plain croutons)
  • Mozzarella Cheese (optional)

Directions

  1. Slice the onions. Cry.
  2. Heat the butter in a 6 qt pot. Add onions.
  3. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions brown a bit.
  4. Add flour and mix well, add beef flavor consomme and mix well.
  5. Add boiling water and bay leaf. Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes.
  6. Add red wine. Return to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.
  7. Lower the heat, cover the pot, and simmer for another 10-15 minutes.
  8. While the soup is cooking, slice the baguette and toast for 5 minutes. (skip if you’re using croutons)
  9. Ladle the soup into oven proof bowls. (if you have oven proof bowls – good for you – if you don’t..I put ours in the toaster oven.. seemed to be fine)
  10. Top with one or two baguette slices, sprinkle with mozzarella and stick into the toaster oven until the cheese is melted.

[I took this picture from the internet (click it for the link). To be fair, it wasn’t easy finding a decent looking picture of French Onion Soup..it probably would have taken just as long to get a decent picture of mine – I don’t know what people are thinking posting disgusting pictures of their French Onion Soup online. Also we have really similar looking spoons, so I thought this could pass (even if they are for meat)]

gnight!

Li-or

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Chinese Soup

My Mother was born in Israel and is of Moroccan descent. Needless to say, this adds up to some of the best food combinations in the world. In my eyes, my Mom is the best cook (if you’ve had her food, I doubt you’d argue) – she thinks quickly on her feet, and comes up recipes that you would think took years to perfect. I know she learned so much from my Moroccan Savta (Grandmother), but she has definitely broadened her horizons and tackled foods from around the world. Below is her version of the famous ‘Hot and Sour Soup’ served in every Chinese restaurant. I don’t think Chinese people would consider it to be authentic, but it’s seriously my favorite.

Chinese Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 Package of regular mushrooms, peeled (I know most people don’t peel their mushrooms, but I do – See this video) and sliced thin.
  • 2 1/2 Tbs canola oil
  • 2 6oz can tomato paste
  • 2-3 Tbs Chicken soup mix
  • Salt
  • Boiling water
  • 4-5 Tbs Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Crushed red pepper flakes
  • Tabasco sauce
  • 3 Tbs Corn Starch
  • 1/2 Cup white vinegar
  • 4-5 Eggs, beaten (separately)
  • Green peas (optional)

Directions

  1. In a large soup pot, heat the oil and saute sliced mushrooms until very soft. Remove the mushrooms (leaving the juices in the pot) and set aside.
  2. While on medium to low heat, add 1 1/2 cans of the tomato paste to the pot. Sprinkle the chicken soup mix and a little bit of salt over the tomato paste.
  3. Add a little boiling water (enough to cover the paste) and mix well until all chunks of paste are gone.
  4. Add more water to make a relatively full pot of soup. (about 3 liters)
  5. Add soy sauce and red pepper flakes while mixing.
  6. Shake in some tabasco sauce – (the more tabasco, the more spicy…I like a lot)
  7. In a small cup, mix the corn starch and vinegar until there are no chunks. Slowly add to soup while mixing.
  8. Taste the soup – add whatever you think it is missing out of the ingredients (for me this is usually salt, tomato paste, or tabasco). (I know you don’t know the exact taste I have in mind, but do whatever tastes good)
  9. Let the soup come to a boil, and allow to boil for a few minutes.
  10. While the soup is still boiling, add each beaten egg, one by one to make egg drops. (Or all together with breaks in your pouring)
  11. Once the egg drops have formed, add some frozen peas for color.

[Photoshopped the peas in because I didn’t have any that day]

[Really great with crispy fried noodles…the ones they serve with duck sauce]

Stay warm!

Li-or

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