Soup or salad? With tomatillos and avocados, who cares?

This soup is really a salad dressing that never made it to the greens!

I don’t know if you’ve ever made something you liked so much, you started eating it right out of the mixing bowl, even before you finished preparing it.

That’s what happened when I made this tomatillo avocado salsa salad dressing. Yes, I know, this is a soup blog. However, I think this dressing is so healthy and scrumptious that it makes a great chilled summer soup.

In other words, it never made the journey from the food processor bowl to the salad greens!

Give peas a chance

Pea soup doesn't need a hambone to have full flavor and richness.

Soupalooza published its second column in the Daily Herald  … this time we focused on split pea soup, admittedly a love-it-or-hate-it proposition. As a matter of fact, Daily Herald Editor John Lampinen wrote on his facebook page:

There are two phenomena I never will understand: 1) People who can smoke one cigarette every couple of months. And 2) people who will eat split pea soup without a gun pointed at their heads…. But if somehow you’re part of the latter phenomenon, our soup columnist has a creative suggestion for you.


Let’s hop on the beet bandwagon!

If you are new to beets, borscht is a good place to start.

I am a latecomer to the whole beet thing. It’s not that I didn’t like them. I just didn’t know them.

Turns out I am not alone. According to The Salt, National Public Radio’s food blog, 2011 was a pretty good year for beta vulgaris.

 Daniel Zwerdling writes:

 Some farmers markets say beet sales have surged since January, and they’ve doubled over the past few years. And it seems like every restaurant across the country serves beets these days — especially the ubiquitous beet salad.

Welcome Daily Herald fans!

Use canned roasted tomatoes for a soup that is mmm-mmm good.

This is a big day for soupalooza. The Daily Herald is running our column once a month on soup. We decided to start with a favorite …. cream of tomato soup. We showcase a great recipe from our guru Mark Bittman of the New York Times (you can never go wrong with Mark).

Soupalooza tinkered with Mark’s recipe a tad by using canned roasted tomatoes and it is awesome …. even better than the kind in the red and white can. Really!  Hard to imagine, but it is almost as easy and twice as yummy. Check out the column in the Daily Herald. We are so excited!

Swiss Chard Redux

OK, so every time I make this soup, it turns out differently. But it is delicious each and every time.

Here’s my question for you, fellow soup savants:  Why is it when you  remake a tried and true soup recipe, the end results can turn out so differently?

I know. I know. We soup lovers like to make soup because, well, because it’s a little more free flowing than, say, baking puff pastry.  Add a little here. Adjust. Toss in some more water. A splash of lemon , a pinch more salt …

Green Beans, Marmite and Hangovers … Oh, my!

Green beans and Marmite? Really? Yes, really!

When my friend and yoga teacher Catriona first mentioned green bean soup with Marmite, I have to admit I balked.

First of all, there’s no real need to make soup out of green beans.  After all,  why mush up something that’s meant to be served with a bit of snap? (My favorite is to blanche green beans and then saute them in butter with shallots, chopped hazelnuts and rosemary. Amazing!)

As to the Marmite, I really didn’t know exactly what it was, but it didn’t sound good.

A Vichyssoise Virgin

Vichyssoise is easy and elegant. It doesn't get better than that! Oh, and it's French. Sort of.

How is it possible to reach middle-age without ever eating vichyssoise?

I know I’m dating myself, but vichyssoise always reminds me of that old Bob Newhart shtick where he pretends he’s a nerdy Pfc.clerk typist in World War II, who was ordered to do phony one-way phone conversations to throw off the eavesdropping Germans.

“Blanke, the cook, is working out rather well, sir,” Newhart says into a phone. “Well one problem is his vichyssoise tastes a little too much like potato soup. Oh, it’s supposed to taste like potato soup …”