Sprinkles on the cupcake? Yes or no?

Is is worth it to add that little something extra in your recipes?

Soupalooza’s most recent column in the Daily Herald focused on sprinkles on the cupcake. No, not real cupcake sprinkles! We are talking about the little extra something that can be found in some soup recipes.

You know, the ingredient you have to run to the store to buy and might be a tad on the expensive side.

One of the soups we focused on was an Apple, Onion, Cheddar Soup that called for calvados, an apple brandy from the Normandy region of France. A small bottle was $24 at the local liquor store. We tried the recipe with the calvados and we tried it without.

In this case, we are not sure it was worth the expense … but we are very curious what you think. Do you sometimes skip that little something extra? Or do you always go that extra mile no matter what you make?

 Apple, Onion and Cheddar Soup

 3 tablespoons butter

2 cloves garlic, minced

5 large Spanish onions, peeled and thinly sliced

4 Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced

6 cups vegetable or chicken stock

2 cups apple cider

2 teaspoons caraway seeds

½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1 cup heavy cream

2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese

¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons Calvados (apple brandy)

Salt and pepper to taste

 In a stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and onions. Saute for 25 minutes or until the onions are soft and golden. Add the sliced apples and sauté an additional five minutes. Add the stock, apple cider, caraway seeds, and thyme. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, cover the pot, and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove the pot from the stove. Add the cream, cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese. Stir until the cheese is completely melted. Add the Calvados and season with salt and pepper. Return to the stove and simmer an additional three minutes.

 Makes 12 servings

 From the New EnglandSoup Factory Cookbook by Marjorie Druker and Clara Silverstein





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