Clams in Rich Broth with Orzo

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
2-4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
1 large onion, peeled and sliced
2 dried red chili peppers
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken stock or water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
salt
5 pounds littleneck or Manila clams, scrubbed well
1/4 cup chopped tomato
1 tablespoon each chopped fresh parsley and basil
1 pound orzo (rice-shaped pasta)

Method

  1. In a large, heavy pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Add onion and chili peppers and cook until onion is soft, 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Add wine and bring to a boil. Add stock or water and boil for 5 minutes. Add butter, salt to taste, clams, and tomato, and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until all clams have opened (discard any that haven’t). Stir in herbs.
  4. Bring a large pan of water to a boil. Add orzo and a pinch of salt; cook until al dente. Drain and drizzle with a little oil.
  5. Spoon a serving of orzo in each of 4 large bowls, add enough broth just to cover, and arrange clams around edge of each bowl.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: What to Have for Dinner


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Ribollita

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and chopped
2 large zucchini, thinly sliced
14-ounce can chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons homemade or bought pesto
3-3/4 cups vegetable stock
14-ounce can navy or pinto beans, drained
salt and ground black pepper

To Finish

1 pound young spinach
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
6-8 slices white bread
Parmesan cheese shavings

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onions, carrots, garlic, celery and fennel and fry gently for 10 minutes.
  2. Add the zucchini and fry for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes, pesto, stock and beans and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for 25-30 minutes, until the vegetables are completely tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. To serve, fry the spinach in the oil for 2 minutes or until wilted. Spoon on the bread in soup bowls, then ladle the soup on the spinach. Serve with extra olive oil for drizzling onto the soup and Parmesan cheese to sprinkle on top.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Source: Healthy Mediterranean Cookbook


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Tortilla Soup

Ingredients

10 corn tortillas
3 pasilla chilies
8 plum tomatoes (1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds)
1-1/2 medium white onions, quartered
6 cloves garlic
3 sprigs epazote (or cilantro)
3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon lard or olive oil
1 ounce Canadian bacon, minced
6 cups chicken broth
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 to 6 tablespoons no-fat sour cream
1/4 cup coarsely grated queso fresco, white cheddar, or Monterey Jack cheese (about 1 ounce)
4 to 6 wedges fresh lime

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Cut the tortillas in half, then crosswise into 1/2-inch strips. Arrange the strips on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake until browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool; the tortillas will crisp as they cool.
  3. Stem the chilies, tear open, and remove the veins and seeds. Place the chilies on a baking sheet and bake until they are aromatic and crisp but not burnt, 4 to 6 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a plate to cool; the chilies will crisp as they cool. Coarsely crumble the chilies.
  5. In a comal or cast-iron frying pan or under the broiler, roast the tomatoes, onions, and garlic until
    browned: 8 to 10 minutes for the tomatoes and onions; 4 to 6 minutes for the garlic.

  6. In the blender, puree the tomatoes, onion, garlic, epazote, parsley, and one of the toasted chilies.
  7. Heat the lard in a large saucepan. Fry the tomato puree and Canadian bacon over high heat, stirring well, until thick, dark, and fragrant, 5 to 10 minutes.
  8. Add the chicken broth and simmer for 10 minutes.
  9. Stir in the toasted tortilla strips and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 2 minutes.
  10. To serve, ladle the tortilla soup into bowls and garnish each with a dollop of sour cream. Sprinkle the cheese and remaining crumbled pasilla chilies on top and serve at once, accompanied by lime wedges for squeezing.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: High-flavour, Low-fat Mexican Cooking


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Vegetable Bortsch

Ingredients

1 lb beetroot
2 tablespoons oil
1 onion, peeled and sliced
7 cups water
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
3 teaspoons salt
freshly ground black pepper
18 oz cabbage, shredded
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons tomato puree
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1/2 cup soured cream

Method

  1. Rinse the beetroot, peel and chop roughly.
  2. Heat the oil in a large pan, add the onion and fry until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the water, beetroot, carrot, celery and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer over a low heat for 30 minutes.
  4. Add the cabbage, garlic, tomato puree and sugar and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Add the lemon juice and parsley, blending well.
  6. Adjust the seasoning. Pour into individual serving bowls and swirl the soured cream over the top. Serve immediately.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: Versatile Vegetables


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Creamy Beet and Potato Borsch

Ingredients

2 oz butter or margarine
2 large onions, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 lb cooked beets (beetroot), diced
12 oz potatoes, peeled and diced
grated rind of 1/2 lemon
2 tablespoons lemon juice
5 cups vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 level teaspoon ground fenugreek
1-1/4 cups milk
1-2 level tablespoons finely chopped chives or scallion (shallot) tops
2/3 Cup sour cream, plain (natural) yogurt or crème fraiche

Method

  1. Melt butter in a pan and sauté onion and carrot very gently, stirring frequently for about 7-8 minutes until beginning to soften but not brown.
  2. Add beets, potato, lemon rind and juice, stock, seasonings and fenugreek and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes until very tender. Cool slightly.
  3. Sieve the soup or puree in a blender or food processor. Return to a clean pan.
  4. Add milk and bring back to a boil. Adjust seasonings and stir in chives.
    Serve each bowl of soup with a spoonful of sour cream or crème fraiche swirled through.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: 50 Ways with Potatoes


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