I’m not a big soup fan, but I enjoyed this one. Especially dipped with sourdough bread. It was not overwhelmingly garlicky in flavor, surprising considering the amount that goes into it. Though it was quite the ordeal to make it… it took us almost 2 hours. Good for a chilly spring weekend maybe.
Also, whatever you do, don’t try to blend the soup while it’s hot. Taylor found that out the hard way (no where in the recipe does it say to cool the soup first), but hot soup+blender=big mess. Give yourself extra time to let it cool significantly before you blend it.
Green Garlic Soup
Makes ten 6 oz portions (or 6 standard-ish size portions). Recipe from Chez Panisse Cooking.
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
24 young garlic plants, white part only, halved lengthwise (8 oz)
3/4 cup water
1 lb + 6oz small red potatoes, peeled and quartered
1.5 quarts broth (recipe calls for chicken, we used vegetable)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1.5 teaspoons salt
2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
ground pepper to taste
Melt butter in 6-quart noncorroding pot. Add the garlic and 1/4 cup of the water. Bring to a simmer, cover tightly, and cook for 15 minutes. Add the potatoes and remaining 1/2 cup water and cook at a simmer for 20 minutes. Add the broth, cover, and allow to bubble gently for 20 minutes.
Allow to cool. Puree the soup in batches in a blender for 2 minutes. Pass the puree through a medium-fine sieve into a bowl. Stir in the cream and salt. Add the vinegar, 1 teaspoon at a time, tasting the soup after each addition, until it tastes good to you.
Reheat the soup gently and serve in warm bowls. Grind black pepper generously over each portion and serve with slices of toasted or grilled sourdough bread.
So we’ve had some iffy recipes in the past few weeks. This one makes up for all of those. One of the best things we’ve eating in a while! The mushrooms practically melted in your mouth. Mmmmm! We will definitely be making this one again.
Taylor wants me to remind you to be sure to pat the scallops dry before sautÃ©ing them. They won’t brown if they’re watery. This is especially important if you use frozen scallops (like we did).
Scallops with Asparagus and Shiitake Mushrooms
We didn’t know what hon-dashi was, or where to get it. I don’t know what it could have added to this dish to make it any better, as it was delicious without it.
Recipe from Epicurious. Makes 2 servings.
6 fresh asparagus spears, cut diagonally into 1 1/2-inch pieces
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
6 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps sliced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons grated onion
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons sake
1 teaspoon hon-dashi, Japanese bonito-type soup stock granules, is sold at Asian markets.
Pinch of cayenne pepper
10 sea scallops
Cook asparagus in medium saucepan of boiling salted water 1 minute. Drain.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and garlic; sautÃ© until mushrooms are tender, about 5 minutes. Add onion; stir 1 minute. Add soy sauce, sake, hon-dashi and cayenne; simmer until sauce thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat.
Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in heavy medium skillet over high heat. Season scallops with salt and pepper. Add scallops to skillet and sautÃ© until almost cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add asparagus and toss until heated through, about 1 minute. Add sauce and simmer 1 minute.
Divide between 2 plates and serve.
These were so so. Edible, definitely, but we don’t know if we’d make them again. Taylor says too much lime, I say too hard to eat. Taylor suggests using a traditional Vietnamese fish sauce instead of the lime sauce, which could be good. Also be sure to get real butter lettuce – we used some other kind, and the leaves were not big enough to roll or strong enough to scoop. In other words, it was messy.
Spicy Vietnamese Shrimp Lettuce Rolls
Splenda? Seriously? I’ve never seen a recipe actually call for it before. We omitted it completely, a whole cup of any type of sugar/sweetener is way too much in my opinion. I used less sugar as well, maybe 1/3 cup total. Maybe that was why the lime was too strong.
Recipe from Epicurious. Makes 4 servings.
1 1/2 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tbsp minced ginger
1/3 cup rice wine or sake
1 1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
Juice from 6 limes (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup Splenda Granulated
1/3 cup light soy sauce
1 1/2 tbsp minced fresh garlic
1 tsp red pepper flakes
2 heads Boston, or butterhead, lettuce
2 cups fresh basil leaves
3 medium carrots, peeled and finely grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/3 lb rice stick noodles, softened in boiling water and drained thoroughly
In a bowl, toss shrimp with ginger, wine, and oil. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 20 minutes.
Mix lime juice, sugar, Splenda, soy sauce, garlic, and pepper flakes in a bowl; set aside. Core lettuce and separate leaves; rinse and dry them. Cook shrimp with its marinade in a medium pan or wok over medium-high heat, turning shrimp until opaque, 2 or 3 minutes.
To make wraps:
Place 3 shrimp inside each lettuce leaf along with 2 or 3 basil leaves, 1 tbsp carrots and a small handful of noodles and roll up. Divide dressing among 4 small dishes for dipping.
Commence the week of Green Garlic (I mentioned Fresh Garlic in last weeks recipes… what we’re using is actually called green garlic. It looks a lot like green onions). To start we made these yummy BLTs with a gourmet twist. Quite good. The Brioche bread is fabulous, and definitely makes the sandwiches that much better. Worth it if you can find it.
Gourmet BLTs With Green Garlic Aioli
Makes 6 sandwiches. Recipe from Epicurious. If you can’t find green garlic, just use a regular clove of dried garlic and blanch it to take away some of the bite (to blanch, put the peeled clove in boiling water for 1-2 minutes).
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped green garlic or 1 regular garlic clove, blanched
1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel or coarse kosher salt
3/4 cup mayonnaise, divided
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 (3-ounce) packages thinly sliced pancetta (Italian bacon; about 30 slices)
12 (1/2-inch-thick) slices brioche or egg bread, lightly toasted
1 large bunch mizuna or arugula, torn into 2-inch pieces
3 beefsteak tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
For aioli: Blend olive oil, garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel in processor until garlic is minced. Add 2 tablespoons mayonnaise and blend well. Transfer to small bowl; whisk in remaining mayonnaise and lemon juice. Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.
For sandwiches: Preheat oven to 450Â°F. Arrange pancetta slices in single layer on 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Bake until crisp, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
Place toast on work surface. Spread with aioli. Divide mizuna among 6 toast slices; top with tomatoes, then pancetta, dividing equally. Top with remaining 6 toast slices, aioli side down. Cut each sandwich in half and serve.