Saturday, January 10, 2015

Winter Soup to Warm Your Bones

Contributor Jim Dixon's annual olive oil garage sale is an institution among aficionados of good cooking and good eating in town. In the tradition of his beloved New Orleans, he always offers a lagniappe, or a little something extra, to his Real Good Food customers, usually something warming to drink and a cup of his famous "garage sale soup."

Garbanzo, Farro & Squash Soup

Soak about a cup each of garbanzos and farro together in plenty of water overnight. Drain, add enough water to cover, stir in some salt, and simmer for an hour—longer is even better—or until the beans are tender. Cut up the rest of the ingredients while the beans and farro cook.

Chop an onion, 3-4 stalks of celery and a few cloves of garlic. Chiffonade a bunch of collard greens (leave the center stalk attached; it'll cook enough to get tender).

While I like to use one of the big, pumpkin-y squashes (Cucurbita maxima, like kabocha or Hubbard), for this, almost any winter squash would work. Cut it in half, pick out the seeds (roast them with olive oil and salt for about 25 minutes) then grate the raw pieces (and leave the skin on, even with the gnarly-looking kabochas). It’s easiest in the food processor, but a box grater works, too. You want about 2 cups worth.

Add the grated squash, onion, celery, garlic and collards to the pot. Add a large can of diced tomatoes (or the tomatoes you roasted and froze last summer). Sprinkle in a good handful of Pantellerian oregano, pour in plenty of good olive oil, taste for salt and let the soup simmer for a couple of hours if you can. Soup always tastes best with long, slow cooking.

Just before serving taste it again; if it seems to need a little something, add a splash of Katz Gravenstein apple cider vinegar [good quality regular cider vinegar works, too. - KB]. Drizzle with more oil at the table, and a pinch of Parmigiano would be good, too.


Farmer Jo said...

This looks delicious! Perfect for a rainy winter's night.

Kathleen Bauer said...

I thought so, too, Jo! Let me know how it turns out, and if you made any adjustments.

Ivy said...

Sorry I missed the "garage sale," how do I get in on that again?

Kathleen Bauer said...

E-mail Jim at Real Good Food and he'll put you on his list for updates!