I didn't notice until just now that two of these pics are soups. haha, well, whatever I guess. So we eat a lot of soup, big deal right? YES! it is a big deal. Beethoven once said, "only the pure of heart can make a good soup." Obviously we never met.
I have been receiving copious amounts of asparagus from my boss's mom. They come into the bakery on saturdays and bring goodies from their farm. I was wondering what to do with all of it when I came across a recipe for cream of asparagus soup. It was in a jamie oliver cookbook (which usually never fails me) so I figured I'd try it out. You start off by sauteing onions and celery together until they become translucent and turn sweet. Then you add only the stalks (reserving the tips of the asparagus for later) of the asparagus and about a quart of chicken stock, bring to a boil, and then turn down to simmer (for about 20 minutes). there isn't actually any cream in the dish, you just get a really creamy consistency from pulsing all the ingredients in a blender. After you have blended the soup, return it to the pot and throw in your reserved asparagus tips. cook them until they are tender-crisp. now, you are almost ready to plate (when you "plate" a soup, is it called bowling?). Garnished with a poached egg and toast and it was pretty much all over after that. the velvety egg yolk melds well with the freshness of the soup and you get an intense blast of spring in your mouth. the only other way I know how to achieve this is by swallowing a slinky, and I would NOT recommend that.
Let's see...other soup is a french tomato soup. It's a tomato soup that's heavy on the onions and seasoned with herbs de provence (dried basil, thyme, fennel seed, and oregano.) and then garnished with chevre. I placed a crostini in the bottom before I ladled in the soup. and then I had another. I love all things crunchy. especially things of the crouton variety.
that tart of a dish you see on the right is actually an almondy jam tart. It's super simple, just flour butter sugar, ground almonds, pinch o' salt pulsed in the queez and then pressed into a tart pan (with a removable bottom) and baked for about 15 min. After that, you just spread jam over the top and throw it back into the oven until it starts to bubble. Just let it cool...hot jam is actually, pretty hot, trust me.
tart pan with removable bottom: You can do lots of treats in here. Quiches, tarts, cakes, pies, whatever you want. I thought I would never use this but I actually use it quite a bit. this is just the first one I could find, maybe there are better deals out there, maybe not. I can't remember how much I paid for mine.