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Tasty Side to Life Tours Website

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Soup Shots-Butternut Squash with gruyere, sage croutons and Celery Root with White Truffle oil, chives and croutons

Anyone that knows me knows that I am the biggest fan of soup and especially cute little shots of soup as an amuse-bouche. They are the perfect punch of flavor especially when made with sweet and rich butternut squash, oh so delicious white truffle oil and savory celery root (which in my book is a hidden culinary gem)

It is my tradition for Thanksgiving every year to make 2 different types of shots. I think they work because they are so flavorful, warm and perfect for entertaining as you can easily walk around with a tray and serve them to a group. They're also nice because its never too much to fill you up. I think a whole bowl of soup sometimes as a start to a meal is just too much. Be careful about the thickness of these because if they are too thick its hard to drink them. If they look like they might be difficult to eat buy a few cute little plastic spoons to serve them with.

I think the first time I had a soup shot was at Cortez restaurant in San Francisco, ca which has since closed :( I had the most amazing pea soup shot with a touch of crisped jambon and some sort of foam topping. It was glorious and I would love to buy a foam machine and be able to top my soup shots with foam. Here are two recipes below that I love.
Butternut Squash Soup shots with Rosemary Cream and Mini Gruyere Sage Croutons
2 butternut squash (you can also use 2 mini pumpkins here)
  • 1 acorn squash
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 white onion- finely diced
  • Good quality Salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 cups homemade Chicken Stock or store bought
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
  • 1 baguette for croutons
  • 1 block of grueyere cheese
  • 1 package of fresh sage
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F or 175 celsius
  3. Cut each squash in two lengthwise and scoop out the seeds with a large spoon. Brush or drizzle cut sides with 2 tablespoons of melted butter. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Arrange the squash cut side down in a roasting pan and bake until tender (make sure it is very tender-poke all over the squash to test), should take about 1 hour. Make sure to let them cool then scoop out the insides of the squash, puree and reserve.
  4. In a medium stockpot, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter. Over low heat, sauté the onion. Do not allow it to brown. Add the squash and cook over very low heat until heated through, stirring occasionally. Do not allow it to bubble up. Season with the salt, pepper, ginger.
  5. Pour in the stock and bring to a boil, still over very low heat, stirring often. Puree the soup one more time. Cook about 20 minutes.
  6. In a small saucepan, heat the cream with the rosemary sprig. Remove the rosemary and pour the cream into the soup. Transfer to a blender or food processor and process. Adjust the seasoning to taste. If the soup seems too thick add more stock. Cut up some fresh baguette into small mini croutons. Top the croutons with a small sliver of gruyere and last a piece of sage. Bake in the oven at 400 for a few minutes. Top each shot with a few croutons. Alternative Serving tip: bake small squash or pumpkins until tender, scoop out, and use as individual serving bowls instead of shot glasses or bowls.
  7. Celery Root and Chestnut Soup with chives, croutons

    and touch of white truffle oil

    2 tablespoons butter

    2 1 pound celery roots, peeled, cut into 1 inch pieces
    2 medium onions, chopped
    1 cup chopped celery

    1 small potato peeled and cut into large dice (optional)
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 teaspoon celery salt
    1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (make sure not to use too

    1/2 cup dry vermouth or dry white wine
    5 cups chicken or vegetable stock
    1 cup whipping cream
    Chopped fresh chives or celery leaves or white truffle

    oil for garnish

    The celery root might look a little scary but it's not too hard

    to peel and it has a light, sweet and nice flavor. The best

    part of this recipe is definitely the Vermouth. Don't leave it

    out because it also gives you so much flavor and pairs

    perfectly with the celery root. Really this recipe is very simple.

    Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat.

    Add chopped and peeled celery roots, onions and celery.

    Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until tender,

    stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Add garlic, celery

    salt and cayenne pepper and stir 1 minute. Add vermouth

    and boil until most of liquid evaporates, about 8 minutes.

    Add stock. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until

    vegetables are very tender, about 15 minutes. Puree

    soup in blender in batches until smooth. Return to saucepan.

    Add cream. Simmer until thickened to desired consistency,

    about 5 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls. Sprinkle with chives,

    croutons and add a drizzle of white truffle oil and serve.

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