Soup for the Summer

Beet, Carrot, and Tomato Soup from Gjelina

I have not done a ton of cooking from the gorgeous cookbook Gjelina because most of the recipes call for advanced preparations--you can't make the pizza unless you start the dough the day before; or maybe you need to make garlic confit first, or preserve some lemons in salt for some exquisite sounding dish.  Needless to say, I'm usually cooking under more of a deadline than that.  

But.  This weekend I happened upon the recipe for the tomato, beet, and carrot soup, and it sounded so scrumptious that I decided I could get my act together and make the prerequisite pomodoro sauce first (we've got a lot of tomatoes at the moment).  And it was SO worth it.  And now I also have a big batch of pomodoro sauce in my fridge, which by the way is some of the best tomato sauce I've made in a long time.  So pizza is back on the menu, once I make the dough, that is.

So, if you have tomatoes that need to get used, make this sauce, and then make this soup.  You won't be disappointed.

3 T olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
kosher salt
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
5 beets, peeled and chopped
4 garlic cloves
1 t tomato paste
1.5 cups beef stock
1.5 cups veg or chicken broth
1 bay leaf, bruised
1/2 cup Pomodoro sauce
spiced yogurt (optional, recipe follows, but highly recommended)

In a large soup pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil and then add the onion.  Cook until fragrant (2 min), then season with salt.  Add the carrots and beets and turn the heat to medium low.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are cooked through and slightly caramelized, about 20 min.  Stir in the garlic and cook another 2 minutes.  Add the tomato paste and just let the aromatics brown, about 3 minutes.  Now add the two stocks and the bay leaf and bring to a simmer.  Simmer for 20 minutes, until the veggies are very tender.  Add the pomodoro sauce.

Remove from the heat and puree until velvety smooth.  Season with salt and pepper and serve with spiced yogurt.  Yum

Spiced Yogurt

1/4 t coriander seeds
1/4t cumin seeds
1 cup greek yogurt
2 T cilantro (you can omit this--I was out)
1 T fresh mint
2 T olive oil
2 t white wine vinegar
juice of 1/2 lemon

Toast the cumin and coriander in a dry skillet then grind them.  In a food processor, combine the spices, yogurt, cilantro, and mint.  Process until tinted faintly green, 5 sec.  Add the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, and salt.  Pulse, taste.  Add water if it seems too thick for you.

MK Barnet