Tag Archives: bay leaves

Roasted Tomato Soup

1 Oct

Roasted Tomato Soup IMG_2701

I tried to make my Moms tomato soup and it didn’t taste the same so I went hunting for another recipe.

Tyler Florence always has great recipes.

He cooks a lot like my Mom but I liked this recipe better than hers.

Sorry Mom.

I changed a couple of things but the basic recipe is the same.

This soup is delicious but requires a little time

It is well worth it.

Roasting the vegetables brings out so much flavor but make sure you make extra because I can eat the entire pan before the soup is made.

Get your big pizza pan out and fill it with cut tomatoes.

I used a mixture of grape, plum and garden big boy tomatoes.

Use whatever you have.

I had about 12 tomatoes and two baskets of grape tomatoes.

Two chopped big onions

Ten cloves of garlic

1/2 cup olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon black pepper

One teaspoon sugar

Mix everything together and roast at 450 degrees till you see a char on the vegetables. This takes about 35 to 40 minutes.

Pour everything into a pot

Add 32 ounces of chicken stock

2 bay leaves

4 tablespoons butter

Let everything come to a boil then let it simmer till it is reduced slightly.

This is just to evaporate some of the water from the tomatoes.

Put everything in batches in the food processor then strain

You should have a creamy soup.

Add 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil. Only use fresh.

One cup of half and half.

Adjust the salt and pepper

Serve this with a big steak and cheese grinder.

Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream.

Don’t say, ‘yuck’. It is delicious.

You can also add roasted whole tomatoes on the stem, sliced jalapeno or croutons.

Take the bay leaf out before you puree the soup.

Chicken Marabella

19 Feb

Chicken Marabella

The Silver Palate Cookbooks are fabulous.

This is a recipe from the first edition.

It is a foolproof recipe that serves 8 to 10  people.

Ten pounds of chicken cut into serving size pieces.

I do take the skin off the chicken but leave the bones .

You could also use boneless chicken.

I use what is on sale and I do mix white and dark meat but I don’t use the wings, neck or legs.

One head of peeled  chopped garlic

1/4 cup oregano

Salt and pepper

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

One cup of pitted prunes

1/2 cup pitted Spanish olives

1/2 cup capers with the juice

6 bay leaves

2/3 cup brown sugar

One cup white wine

1/2 cup chopped cilantro

In a large bowl mix everything except the brown sugar and wine.

Cover, refrigerate and marinate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Pour everything into a large oven proof pan . This includes all of the marinade.

Try not to overlap the chicken.

Sprinkle with the brown sugar

Pour the wine over everything

Bake for 75 minutes.

Make sure you baste the chicken with the sauce as it cooks about three or four times

Test one piece of the chicken before serving.

This also tastes delicious at room temperature but I like everything really hot.

Garnish with the cilantro

I served this with a basic risotto and asparagus.

 

Beef Barley Soup

3 Feb

Beef and Barley Soup unnamed

It is always good to remember that you can add almost anything to a soup but I like this soup plain.

1 1/2 pound  of diced beef. I use an inexpensive cut like chuck because it has a good flavor.

3 big marrow bones. The marrow gives another great flavor.

One large chopped onion

4 chopped carrots

3 stalks diced celery

2 bay leaves

4  beef bouillon cubes

48 ounces beef stock

4 cups water

One can small white kidney  beans

2 cups packed fresh baby spinach

1 1/2 cups barley

One teaspoon salt

3 1/2 cups water

Heat three tablespoons oil in a good size soup pot.

Sprinkle salt and pepper on the marrow bones and slowly brown on all sides.

Add enough water to cover the bones, bring to a boil and then simmer.

The marrow should melt out of the bones. Set aside and chill, then  remove the top layer of congealed fat.

Remove from the pan.

Add two more tablespoons of oil and add the diced meat

Season with salt and pepper

Cook till the meat is brown and remove from the pan

Add the carrots, onion and celery and cook till soft about 5 minutes

Add the meat, bones and broth from the bones, vegetables, bay leaf, water, bouillon cubes and beef broth.

Bring to a boil then simmer.

Add the entire can, including the juice from the can of white beans

Boil the barley in the salted 3 cups of water till chewy about 30 minutes. Most of the water will be absorbed.

Add the barley to the simmering beef soup

Add the spinach

Let simmer for one hour then remove the bay leaves.

I leave the bones in the soup just because they look weird.

Serve with grated cheese and some crusty bread.

Braised Short Ribs

16 Dec

Braised Short Ribs

This takes some time to make and is worth every second.

It was my son Mikes birthday and this is one of his favorites so I made it for him. A labor of love.

This is enough for 8 to 10 good eaters so cut the recipe if you need to but follow the cooking  directions.

My Mom used to make this and the house would smell great.

It was a real inexpensive meal back then and would stretch to feed all of use for days. Now it is not cheap.

This also freezes well and is a great make ahead company meal.

Take out your largest pan you have to braise the meat.

12 pounds of short ribs

1/3 teaspoon olive oil

4 ounces of chopped pancetta

Flour, salt and pepper to dust over the ribs.

2 large diced onion

8 cloves garlic

1 1/2 pounds of baby carrots

6 chopped celery stalks with the green tops

2 boxes of sliced mushrooms

1 small can of tomato paste

2 28 ounce cans of diced tomatoes with the juice

6 cups good red wine plus a little extra to get you threw this recipe.

8 cups of beef broth

2 teaspoons dried thyme

4 bay leaves

2 beef bouillon cubes

1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley for garnish

On medium heat add the oil and pancetta.

Cook till the pancetta is crisp and then take out of the pan and set aside.

Sprinkle the ribs with the flour, salt and pepper.

Place the ribs in the hot pan to brown on both sides. Do not crowd them, so work in batches.

Put the ribs in the largest aluminum roasting pan you have and place the pan on a cookie sheet.

You need the cookie  sheet or else the pan will bend with the weight of all the ribs and vegetables.

De-glaze the braising pan with the red wine then add the tomato paste and mix well. Cook for about five minutes till the wine starts to boil

Pour over the ribs.

In the same braising pan add the onions, mushrooms, celery and garlic and cook just  till soft.

Add the diced tomatoes, thyme and bay leaf.

Pour everything over the ribs.

Add the beef broth over everything.

Add the pancetta.

Add 2 beef bouillon cubes instead of salt.

Cover tightly with foil.

Bake 375 for at about four hours.

Check after two hours and add more broth if needed.

Stir the bottom of the pan to make sure it is not burning.

If your oven runs hot lower the temperature to 325 or 350.

Make sure the foil is tight.

The meat should fall off the bone when it is  finished cooking.

It is amazing how the sauce thicken up.

Taste for more salt and pepper.

Make sure you take the bay leaves out before serving

Serve with big wide pasta noodle, polenta or cheese grits.

I went with the cheese grits this time.

I like to make this ahead of time then chill.

The beef fat hardens and you can scrape it off.

The bones from the short ribs are so good to suck on. You can taste the marrow so don’t throw them out.

My Mom used to save the bones and put the them in a soup. She wasted nothing.

Enjoy.