Back into Soup

A couple days after the official start of fall and I’ve got 2 homemade soups under my belt. It’s a good start to the season.

Taking up too much space in my freezer are corn chowder (a first for me) and a tomato/roasted pepper soup (a repeat that’s still being worked out).

It cries out for grilled cheese croutons, don't you think?

I started with Mark Bittman’s corn chowder recipe from How to Cook Everything, replacing his scallions with shallots and using low-fat milk.

Making it was incredibly easy. The most time-consuming part was shucking and cutting the kernels off 14 ears of corn (I doubled the recipe). Next time I plan to grill the corn a little to give the kernels a deeper flavor and burn off some of the corn silk.

Anyway, the soup tastes great. Very buttery with tons of corn kernels. This makes it to the 2014 soup menu.

Wow, mushrooms! Just don't tell the boyfriend.The work-in-progress tomato/roasted pepper soup needs help. I started with Bittman’s vegetable broth (who knew about adding soy sauce?!).

I blackened 3 red peppers on the grill and roasted 2 heads of supermarket garlic in the oven. Note to self: find better garlic and use more of it next time.

Never fear, the mushrooms shrank during simmeringTo this wonderfully smelling mix, I added a can of crushed tomatoes (3-4 cups worth), a sauteed onion (plus 2 cloves garlic), a tablespoon or two of chopped basil, and about 6 cups of the broth.

The soup tastes good, but needs more body. I don’t know if that means it needs to be thicker or have more depth of flavor or what. The soup is close to a thin spaghetti sauce in taste. That’s tasty but I’m still looking for something more.

All the veggies before adding the brothIn addition to bigger, better garlic to roast, I’m thinking of dialing back on the tomatoes or going with chunks of tomatoes and upping the roasted red pepper. Maybe using half and half and/or cutting down on the broth.

All in all though, I ended up with 2 pretty tasty soups. Here’s hoping the trend continues with what’s next on the soup attempts: a repeat of chicken noodle, a new French onion, and maybe a potato thing.

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