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Creamy Romanesco Soup with Rosemary Olive Oil

Creamy Romanesco Soup with Rosemary Olive Oil

6 Servings | prep Time 20 min | Cook time 30 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup Olive Oil
  • 4 (4-inches) sprigs
  • Fresh Rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 medium red onion (chopped, about 1 cup)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (minced, about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 quart Low-Sodium Vegetable or chicken Stock (plus more as needed for reheating)
  • 1 medium head Romanesco or 2 small heads (cored and broken into 1 1/2-inch florets, about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt (plus more to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Black Pepper (plus more to taste)
  • 1 Lemon (for serving, Freshly grated zest of)
  • 3 cups Rustic Country Bread (diced, 3/4-inch pieces

 

  1. Make the rosemary oil. In a small, heavy saucepan, combine the rosemary sprigs and olive oil. Bring to a very gentle simmer over medium low heat. Cook for about 5 minutes, adjusting heat as needed. Be careful not to fry the rosemary. Remove from heat and allow the rosemary to cool in the oil while you make the soup.

  2. Make the soup. In a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil (not the rosemary oil). Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

  3. Add the stock, cauliflower, salt (start with 1 teaspoon if the stock you are using is not low sodium) and pepper and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer until the cauliflower is tender and can be pierced easily with a fork, about 10 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, make the croutons. Lightly coat a skillet with some of the reserved rosemary oil and heat over medium. Add cubed bread and sprinkle with salt. Cook, tossing often until golden and toasted all over, about 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the croutons to a plate to cool.

  5. Strain the rosemary infused olive oil into a glass jar or bowl and discard the rosemary. Transfer the stock and vegetables to a blender, working in batches if necessary, and add 1/4 cup rosemary oil. Blend on high until the soup is completely smooth and creamy. Add more rosemary oil, salt and pepper to taste and blend to combine. Return the soup to the pot and keep warm. If the soup seems thin, simmer another 5 to 10 minutes to reduce slightly. The soup will continue to thicken as it cools.

  6. Serve hot, garnished with a drizzle of rosemary oil and a few croutons. If the soup seems too thick when reheating, add a little stock. The soup will keep refrigerated for a couple of days. The rosemary oil will keep in a sealed container at room temperature for about a week.

Recipe Notes

-The recipe calls for low sodium stock and 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. If you are not using low sodium stock, cut the salt in half to start with and go from there as 2 teaspoons will be too much for some stocks. Having said that, the finished dish should be amply seasoned.

South African Chakalaka Bean Salad

South African Chakalaka Bean Salad

 

5 Servings | prep Time 20 min | Cook time 15 minutes

Ingredients 

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 15 oz can of whole peeled tomatoes, add half the can of juice
  • 3 cups shredded cabbage (yield from about ⅓ head of cabbage)
  • 1 chili pepper, diced and seeds removed
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (15-ounce) can of low-sodium baked beans
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the diced onion and stir for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the curry powder, garlic, thyme, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, and ginger, and stir for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, bell peppers, carrots, and cabbage. Simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Finally, add the baked beans and cook for about 2-3 minutes, stirring often, until fully warmed through. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding salt and pepper if needed. Serve warm.

Chakalaka is a savory baked beans dish served as a side or relish at South African barbeques.

Turkish style Borlotti Beans with sauteed Fennel and Red Russian Kale

Turkish style Borlotti Beans with sauteed Fennel and Red Russian Kale

Turkish style Borlotti Beans with sauteed Fennel and Red Russian Kale

 3-4 Servings | Prep Time 20 min | Cook time 35 minutes

  •  2½ cups fresh borlotti beans, podded (2½ cups podded weight)
  • 2/4  extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium size onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Fennel bulb, finely chopped
  • 1 thinly sliced red Russian kale with hard stem removed
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 medium size tomatoes, or half a 15 oz can of whole peeled tomatoes and their juices
  • 2 medium sized carrots, peeled and cut into 1 cm. cubes
  • 1 medium size potato, peeled and cut into 1 cm. cubes (optional)
  • 1 lemon, finely sliced, to garnish (optional)
  • water
  • salt and pepper

 

  1. Cook the podded borlotti beans in lightly salted water for 5-6 minutes. Drain.
  2. At the same time, heat a thick bottomed pot or pan over medium/low heat. Add the olive oil and fry the onion and fennel until soft, 8 minutes, stirring regularly.
  3. Add the garlic and tomato paste. Fry for another minute or so, stirring constantly. The garlic should not color.
  4. Add the tomato. Stir to mix well, then add the carrot, potato, beans, ¼ cup of water (or more, for a saucier version) and some salt and pepper. Mix well. Bring to the boil, then turn the heat down and leave to simmer, lid on, until the beans are completely soft, 20-30 minutes.
  5. Mix in the thinly sliced kale 25 minutes into cooking, with the lid on it should stew with the rest of the food. The heat can be turned off and lid left on to cook the kale more if needed.
  6. Take off the heat and leave to cool down to room temperature with the lid still on. Serve topped with fennel fronds from the fennel bulb and/or flat leaf parsley and some lemon juice, if you like.

 

 

Eat this on its own or serve with toasted bread or for breakfast with scrambled eggs.

If using canned beans, simply rinse and drain, then follow the instructions above, starting at step 2, and reducing the cooking time in step 4 if necessary.

You can also use other legumes, such as cannelini beans, butter beans or chickpeas.