When we got back from San Francisco, the shock of a fifteen degree temperature drop immediately drove me to revisit the soup sections of my cookbooks. Comfort was definitely in order, and what better radiates comfort than a hot bowl of soup?
Italian White Bean, Bacon and Tortellini Soup
Giada De Laurentiis’ recipe for an Italian white bean, pancetta and tortellini soup immediately caught my eye, but then again, it’s hard to go wrong with pork belly and cheese-filled pasta. I ended up substituting Irvings Farm Fresh bacon for the pancetta, and boy, was it a good decision – the bacon imbued the broth with a smoky flavour that was irresistible. The tortellini (from local company Pasta Time, available at the Italian Bakery) was also a nice inclusion, especially because we don’t indulge in the cheese-filled pasta often. And though we didn’t have any carrots, the Swiss chard from Sundog Organics provided a needed vegetable punch.
Italian white bean, bacon and tortellini soup
It was a simple but tasty soup that I will definitely make again, especially on cold winter nights.
Golden Pepper and Tomato Soup
For something a little less protein-rich, I turned to Deborah Madison’s golden pepper and yellow tomato soup. I ended up substituting another main ingredient in this soup – instead of using yellow tomatoes, I used one absolutely massive Grightmyre’s Pride tomato that weighed over two pounds (James of Sundog Organic said the heirloom variety is quite dense). Coupled with bell peppers from Doef’s and saffron and herbs for flavouring, the outcome should have been better than it was. We thought the broth was lacking something, though the bacon broth, still lingering on our minds (and palates), probably made it impossible for this soup to follow.
Golden pepper and yellow tomato soup
I had been eying Donna Hay’s celeriac soup in No Time To Cook for some time, patiently waiting for celery root to appear at the City Market. It finally did recently, and I picked some up from Greens, Eggs and Ham. In addition to the celery root, the recipe also calls for onion, potatoes, stock and a touch of cream, pureed together.
Celeriac soup, all packed for lunch
I know I shouldn’t be surprised that celeriac tastes exactly like celery, but I was. It brightened the potentially heavy soup with a lovely freshness that made for the perfect lunch.
Though I’m happy with the beautiful fall weather we’ve been having lately, the bright side of a drop in temperature will be returning again to the comforting arms of soup.