This post is dedicated to the Logan Square Farmers Market because they know what’s up. Beyond the usual produce and grass-fed/organic meats, you can also find wild caught fish, sauces, spices, flowers, truffles, guitar players, and families picnicking along the boulevard. Indeed, this is what a farmer’s market should look and feel like. This Sunday, we found ourselves up against a 45 minute wait at Lula for brunch. If you don’t know Lula Cafe, you really, really should. Really. http://www.lulacafe.com/. They have the best brunch in town. A smoked oyster in my bloody mary? I mean, really. On we went to the market where we gathered a variety of veggies including turnips, carrots, tomatoes, green onions, zucchini, and red potatoes. After I stuffed my face with lemon curd and sour cherry bread pudding french toast (told ya) and bloody marys, I came home with no intention of cooking. In fact my only intention was to take a nap or maybe pass out on the couch in front of the tv. Alas, when I opened my bag of goodies from the market I could not help myself. I wanted to cut into, taste and play with the rainbow of vegetables we acquired. “How to play with all of you at one time?” I asked myself. Easy. Soup. Now, I do not create my own recipes often. I do not have the discipline to write things down exactly as they are prepared nor do I care very much to invent anything different. However, as a novice home cook I would say that my skills have reached a point where I can fairly pull together a variety of things and create something special. This soup is one of those things.
1 medium zucchini, peeled, roughly chopped into cubes
2 small- med tomatoes, quartered
1 turnip, peeled, quartered or cubed
5-6 red potatoes
4 carrots, peeled
2 green onions, chopped including the green
2-3 garlic cloves , pressed
lots of cracked black pepper
crushed red pepper
1 veg bouillon cube
Prep vegetables and place in stock pot. Toss with fresh thyme, salt, cracked black pepper, add bouillon cube and cover with water. Cover. Set heat on med-high and cook. Give a check in 20 minutes. If the potatoes and turnips are cooked through, everything else is ready. Turn off heat. Use hand blender ( I use a Smart Stick Hand Blender from Cuisinart…Thanks Sue and Dad!) and move through out the pot. If you do not have an electric hand blender, you can use a blender. After a few minutes, the vegetables will begin to combine and puree. Add crushed red pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Serve and top with freshly chopped cilantro.
The best part about making soup is you cannot mess it up, really. You can add or take away a lot of different ingredients to make the soup you desire. Next time, I might try adding some greens like kale or chard. Perhaps a touch of cream? Maybe something fancy like a quail egg. Or perhaps I’ll give a go at my own stock. In any case, soup is a fun and easy way to try and taste an array of ingredients and it is plain good for the soul.
Check above for a little funny on soup 😉