Saturday, November 5, 2011

Soup Night is Back!

The wait is over, the weather is cold, and everyone is craving soup!   Our soup gang is officially back and we are better than ever!  For the first soup night of the season I hosted a spectacular meal of arugula salad  with pomegranate and pepitas,  butternut squash and goat cheese quesadillas, roasted red pepper and soup with cilantro cream, and apple crisp with bourbon ice cream for dessert.   This week I'm featuring two of the recipes hope you enjoy!

Red Pepper and Black Bean Soup with Cilantro Cream
Serves 6
*adapted Wellness Recipes 

1/2 cup (loosely packed) cilantro sprigs
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 tablespoon skim milk
5 large red bell peppers
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
2 large onions, sliced
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 cups vegetable broth
One 10 1/2-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained

Preheat the broiler.  Meanwhile, in a food processor or blender, purée the cilantro, sour cream and milk. Transfer to a bowl and chill until serving time.

Cutting vertically, slice the bell peppers in 3 or 4 flat panels, leaving the core and seeds behind. Put the bell pepper pieces, skin-side up, in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan and broil 4 to 5 inches from the heat for 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until the peppers are tender and lightly charred. Remove from the heat and let cool; peel off the skins.  This is hands down the easiest way to roast peppers.

In a large pot heat the oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the onions, garlic, salt, black pepper and cayenne, and sauté until the onions are softened slightly, about 2 minutes.

Add broth, and the bell peppers to the pan; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the peppers and onions are very tender, about 10 minutes.

Using an immersion blender, purée the soup.  Add the beans and cook over medium heat until warmed through. Ladle the soup into bowls and top each serving with some of the cilantro cream.

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Quesadillas

olive oil
salt and pepper
butternut squash
goat cheese
whole wheat tortillas

In a large pot boil water and add cubed butternut squash.  Cook squash until tender then drain.  Add olive oil and salt and pepper and mash with an immersion blender.  Set aside.

Take a tortilla

Smear with butternut squash puree

Add goat cheese

Add another tortilla

Fry in a skillet

Cut using a pizza cutter

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