Poblano and butternut squash soup

This one looks a little crazy, so you’ll just have to trust me. The smoky flavor of the roasted poblanos and cumin is balanced nicely by the mild sweetness from butternut squash. Cozy on a snowy day.

Poblano and butternut squash soup, adapted from Green Chili Chowder, Homesick Texan Cookbook

  • 4 poblanos
  • 2 jalapenos
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 T cumin
  • 2 cups chicken broth

Roast the poblanos and jalapenos under a broiler or over a burner until the skin is charred. Place the poblanos in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Leave to steam for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, throw the butter and onion in a pot together and saute until the onions are soft – around 10 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute more. Add the chicken broth, cumin, and butternut squash and bring to a boil, then down to a simmer. Slip the skins off the poblanos, and seed a chop both them and the jalapenos. Add to the soup. Continue simmering until the squash is tender. Remove about two cups of the chunky parts, and puree the remaining soup in a blender or food processor. Add everything back together and serve warm.


Recipe classic: Famous Barr French Onion Soup

Lately, I’ve had this thing for old recipes. I love the way they look in yellowed cookbooks and on splattered, handwritten pages. I love seeing if they really taste as good as you recall, or if remembered flavors have been sweetened by pleasant memories.

I’ve been reading a copy of the Joy of Cooking from 1972, poring over dozens of Junior League, PTA, and church fund-raising recipe books, asking co-workers what their grammas used to make, and even searching Etsy for vintage cookbooks.

We visited my mom and dad last weekend, and when we got there, I found my mom making this:

That’s a copy of Famous Barr onion soup (hand-written by “Millie” circa 1975). Just exactly the type of thing I’ve been obsessing over. Famous Barr was a department store in St Louis, where my mom grew up. It’s now a part of Macy’s, and the only place I know to get the soup is my mom’s kitchen.

Ladeling soup into crocks:

French bread toasted in the oven with parmesan

Soups topped with toast, mozarella, and swiss

Browned in the oven

(yes, it did taste as good as I remember)

What are your favorite recipe classics?

Broccoli Soup

Today, I’m living right in the middle of real town.

As in, what I want for dinner is cookies and bread. But here in real town, that is not a healthy dinner choice.
Takeout sounds delicious. But here in real town, I’m trying to cut back on eating out.
I’d love to make a big elaborate meal. But here in real town, it’s already 7pm and I’m starving.

Instead, what I have for dinner is broccoli (I know. Cookies and bread sounds better). Let’s make the most of it.

Broccoli Soup

  • 2 bunches of broccoli, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 5 cups of water + 5 chicken bullion cubes*

Saute your onions and garlic in a little olive oil until soft. Add the broccoli, water*, and bullion cubes. Simmer until broccoli is soft.

*Nice stock from scratch would be better, but here in real town… well, you know.
**If you wanted to replace 1 cup water and 1 bullion cube with a recipe or two of cheese sauce, then top with shredded cheddar for serving, I would not judge you.

Black Bean Soup

This or something quite similar is the usual result when I want something home-cooked that’s still fast and easy to put together. And it’s support for keeping my pantry well stocked, as everything here came right from it.

Black Bean Soup

  • 2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can tomatoes diced, with juice
  • 1 T tomato paste
  • 1/4 C onion
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed
  • 1 heaped t cumin
  • 1 t chili powder
  • 2 C beef broth

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil in a soup pot until soft. Add cumin and chili powder, stir for 30 seconds, then add everything else. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down. simmer for 10-15 minutes and serve. Taco chips, sour cream, and avocado would all be delightful on top.

Split Pea Soup

I know it looks weird and green and it’s the punch line to a joke we told in 5th grade,* but I love split pea soup anyway.

Split pea soup

  • 1 C split peas, rinsed and picked over
  • 1 slice bacon
  • 3-4 C water
  • Salt, to taste

Fry your bacon in a soup pot, til almost crisp. Add the split peas and water, and simmer for 1 hour, checking occasionally to see if it’s getting too dry. Add more water if so. Add salt and serve it up.

*”what did you do then?” “pee green soup” Remember that?

Green salsa soup

This is easy, healthy (minus too much garnish), and filling. Hubs likes to make this on cold Sundays.

This would look so good if I could actually take pictures.

Green Salsa Soup

2 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped
1 jar green salsa
1 can butter beans, drained
2 T olive oil
1 onion chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
3 C chicken broth
Cheese, chips, sourcream for garnish

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat in a soup pot for about 3 minutes, or until onion is soft. Add stock and bring to a boil. Add green salsa and butter beans. Simmer for 10 minutes, then add chicken and heat through. Serve with cheese, crushed taco chips, and sour cream on top, if desired.

Egg trick #3: Egg drop soup

Not quite like Chinese take out, but still yummy and fast.
Egg drop soup

  • 5 C chicken stock (homemade is really really good for this)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 T parsley, chopped
  • Green onions and soy sauce for garnish

Bring your chicken stock to a boil, then turn down to a gentle simmer. Beat your eggs and parsley together, then drizzle into the stock. Stir it constantly with a fork as you pour it in (and after) until the egg cooks and you get those fun little ribbons. Serve topped with some chopped green onions and a couple dashes of soy.