Monday, September 27, 2010

RECIPE: Vegetable Potage

From Patricia Wells at Home in Provence

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 leek, white part only, trimmed, scrubbed, andchopped
Sea salt to taste
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
2 turnips, peeled and chopped
2 zucchini, peeled and chopped
2 large potatoes, peeled and chopped
A handful of minced cabbage
½ head of lettuce (such as romaine), washed, dried, and coarsely chopped
1 quart Chicken Stock
One 2-ounce chunk of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

1. In a large, heavy-duty stockpot, combine the oil, leeks, and 1 teaspoon of salt, and cook until lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the carrots, turnips, zucchini, and potatoes in small batches, cooking each vegetable for several minutes before adding the next one. Once all the vegetables are lightly browned, add the cabbage and lettuce, and stir vigorously until wilted. There should be almost no liquid left at this point. Add hot water just to cover the vegetables and simmer, covered, until the carrots and turnips are soft, about 25 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Add the stock and simmer gently, covered, for 30 minutes more. Taste for seasoning.

2. While the soup simmers, prepare the cheese. Using a vegetable peeler, shave long, thick strips of the cheese into a bowl. Set aside.

3. Remove the stockpot from the heat. Using an immersion mixer, puree the soup directly in the stockpot. (Alternatively, use a blender. Return it to the stockpot.) Taste for seasoning.

4. To serve, lade the hot soup into warmed soup bowls and place the cheese shavings on top of the soup.

Contributed by Lisa Bretherick

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