Soup: More Satisfying Than a Cashmere Sweater


As the days grow shorter and cooler, it’s time to retrieve my recipes for steaming hot soups — prob­ably the most ideal fall and winter food. A soup can not only serve as a cozy appetizer, it can also be an easy lunch, or a light dinner, when served with a salad or sandwich.

It’s also a healthy snack. Whenever I can’t figure out what to eat, I’m always in the mood for soup.
Zucchini and Yellow Squash Soup
(Meat or Pareve)
4 yellow squash
2 zucchini
4 potatoes
3 Tbsps. olive oil
3 medium-large onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. curry powder
1⁄2 tsp. ground cumin
1 box (32 oz.) chicken or vegetable broth
2-3 chicken or vegetable bouillon cubes
kosher salt to taste
freshly ground pepper to taste
Cut the yellow squash and zucchini in half lengthwise. With a knife, cut out and discard the seeds. Dice the squash into 1-inch size pieces. Peel the potatoes, rinse under water, and dice into 1-inch size pieces. Reserve the squash and potatoes.
Pour the olive oil into a large stockpot and heat on a medium-low flame. Add the onions and garlic. Saute, stirring for a minute or two, until wilted and fragrant. Sprinkle in the curry powder and cumin. Stir for a minute.
Add the squash and potatoes and stir to combine. Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth. Add enough water to cover the vegetables in the pot by about 1 inch. For every cup of water added, add 1 bouillon cube.
Sprinkle in the salt and pepper. Because bouillon is salty, go easy on additional salt. Check for salt while soup simmers.
Cover the pot and simmer for 45 to 60 minutes, until all vegetables are quite soft. Remove from flame and cool to warm.
In batches, ladle the soup into a blender and blend on high speed to puree. Pour into another pot and reheat to serve. Recipe freezes well.
Serves 10.
Hungarian Goulash Soup
6 carrots
1 parsnip
4 potatoes
4 Tbsps. sunflower or vegetable oil, or more, if needed
1 large onion, diced
kosher salt to taste
3 Tbsps. paprika
ground black pepper to taste
2 lbs. beef stew meat, cubed
4 Italian plum tomatoes, diced
1⁄4 lb. string beans, rinsed, ends snipped and cut into thirds
3 Tbsps. fresh parsley, minced
2 stalks celery, cleaned and diced, or 1 tsp. celery flakes
1 beef bouillon cube
Rinse, peel and dice the carrots, par­snip and potatoes. Reserve.
In a large stockpot, heat oil on a medium flame. Saute onion in oil until wilted, about 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle with salt to taste and add paprika. Stir until well combined, about 1 minute.
Sprinkle salt and pepper on meat. Add to the pot. Brown meat, stirring often, until all sides are seared, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add more oil, if needed. Stir in the tomatoes. Saute until wilted, about 3 minutes.
Add the carrots, parsnip and potatoes. Stir to blend, cooking until vegetables sweat, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the string beans, parsley and celery, and stir to blend.
Drop bouillon cube into the pot. Pour about six cups of water into the pot, or enough to barely cover the ingredients. Cover the pot and raise flame to high until water comes to a boil. Then reduce the flame to the lowest degree possible. Stir ingredients, making sure bouillon dissolves. Check for salt, adding more, if desired. Cook on a slow simmer for 3 hours, or until meat softens. Stir every 20 minutes while simmering.
Serve immediately, or cool to room temperature, cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days before reheating. Recipe freezes well.
Serves 8 to 10.
Italian Restaurant Minestrone
(Pareve or Dairy)
4 stalks celery
4 carrots
1 large onion
2 zucchini
3 garlic cloves
4 Tbsps. fresh parsley
2 Tbsps. fresh basil
1 head of escarole
1⁄2 lb. cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 can (19 oz.) cannellini beans, drained
1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes
1 can (32 oz.) vegetable broth
1⁄4 tsp. oregano leaves
1 bay leaf
kosher salt to taste
freshly ground pepper to taste
1 and 1⁄2 cups uncooked penne
optional garnish: grated Parmesan cheese
Prepare the following ingredients and place in a large stockpot: Clean and dice the celery, carrots, onion and zucchini. Chop the garlic, parsley and basil. Rinse escarole leaves well. Pile up several of them and slice each into 3 to 4 pieces. Continue slicing remaining escarole leaves.
Add the remaining ingredients to the stockpot — except the penne and cheese. Fill the empty can of tomatoes with water, stir with a spoon to release particles sticking to the can, and pour into the stockpot. Cover pot and bring to a boil on a medium-high flame. Simmer for 20 minutes. Halfway through, check for salt, adding more, if desired.
As the soup simmers, prepare the penne according to package instructions. If cooked before the minestrone, drain penne and place in a ceramic container while in reserve. Cover the container.
Add the penne to the minestrone when it is ready. Serve immediately, or cool to room temperature, cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days before reheating.
Recipe freezes well. Sprinkle each bowl with a generous amount of parmesan cheese, if using.
Serves 10.
Carrot Ginger Soup
4 bunches of carrots, about 20 medium-sized
4 large potatoes
1 piece (4-inch) ginger root,
or more, if desired
3 Tbsps. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1⁄4 tsp. ground nutmeg
5 cups vegetable broth
(can be canned)
kosher salt to taste
3 cups 2 percent milk
Peel the carrots and potatoes with a vegetable scraper. Cut the carrots into carrot sticks. Cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks. Reserve.
Peel the skin off the ginger root and dice it. With a sharp knife, finely chop the diced ginger.
Heat the olive oil in a large pot or stockpot. Saute the ginger and onion in the oil, stirring almost constantly, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle in the nutmeg and stir another minute.
Add the vegetable broth, and reserved carrots and potatoes. Sprinkle in the salt. Add salt cautiously as the broth may be salty. Cover the pot and bring to a slow boil. Simmer until the carrots and potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from the flame and let mixture cool to warm.
In batches, transfer the mixture, broth and all, to a blender or food processor fitted with a metal blade. Puree each batch and transfer to another pot. Pour in the milk, stirring constantly. Place the pot on low flame and stir until soup is hot. Serve immediately.
Recipe freezes well, although soup appears watery when defrosted. Reheat on a low flame, stirring constantly and soup will resume its rich texture.
Serves 8.


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