Some of the earliest recipes I learned were soups in my high school years. I quickly fell in love with them for their lovely flavor, frugality, and comfort. What is better on a cold day than a soothing apple and butternut squash soup? When you want comfort and something that sticks to your bones, what fills you up better than Chicken and Dumplings? And what beats the complex flavors of Pho soup? Soup recipes and techniques span across the nations, the ages and there are hundreds upon hundreds of variations that give an un-ending scope for the imagination.
Later I grew to appreciate the beauty of flavorful homemade stocks made from chicken, beef, or lamb bones. Rich not only with flavor, but also with minerals easily accessible to growing children, the elderly and everyone in between.
I love soups. But I think that we have lost a lot of our “soup roots” in recent years (and no wonder, soups served at a typical grocery deli or restaurant can be quite terrible), but they are the type of nourishing, simple dish that all of us should enjoy! I don’t feel like I am “well-stocked” unless I have chicken stock on hand.
One of my friends commented on my first cookbook, Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons, “I am so surprised that you didn’t write a soup cookbook first!” Yes, I do love soups, and my friends know it! (Though, in my defense, I love salads too!).
So, when Victory Belt publishing contacted me about publishing with them, my first thought was a soup cookbook. And so my work began.With Victory Belt, I will be publishing a large, beautiful, full color cookbook! It was a joy, and a lot of work at the same time. Pots and pots, and pots and pots (you get the idea) of soups later, my book is soon to be on the press. I am giddy, excited, nervous, and thrilled all at the same time. I hope all of you who requested this book buy it!
And I am super-duper glad I finished it! Whew, that was a lot of work!
This cookbook has over 120 recipes, each with a picture. All recipes I didn’t like that well, got cut because I wanted this cookbook to be full of recipes that I (and hopefully you as well) would use on a consistent basis. I wanted the majority of recipes to be ones that you could make not only on relaxed weekends, but also as part of your normal, busy weekday life.
My hope is that my cookbook will be helpful to those who want both simple soups (like chicken noodle soup, or lentils soups) and gourmet soups (like Beef Pho or Chicken and Shrimp Gumbo), and that my book will help point out how simple these types of soups generally are too! Whether you are steaming clams in a spicy tomato broth, or making homemade noodles, or making beef stock, the techniques are simple and doable for all of us. I most of all wanted my cookbook to be something that you, my readers, would enjoy and use on a regular basis.
I start the book with many recipes for stocks and broths. I give instructions on how to make them in your slow-cooker, how to re-use bones in stock making, how to concentrate stock so you always have it on hand (picture above), garlic broth, mushroom broth, and roasted vegetable broth, and then simple broth-y soups. From there we go to a wide variety of recipes. Sections include: Simple Soups with Eggs, Family Favorite Soups, Soups Inspired by favorite restaurants, Soups with Noodles, Creamy Vegetable Soups, Soups Centered on Legumes and Grains, Hearty Soups and Stews, Grain Porridges and Rice Congees, and Chilled Soups.
I also include pictorial step-by-step instructions for dicing, sautéing, and chopping vegetables.
I am so excited about so many of these recipes. I share recipes that have been in the family for years, I share new discoveries, and soups with ancient roots.
And soups can be made in the heat too! This Chilled Avocado soups was a favorite with my testers.
Making this soup cookbook was was a delicious adventure in the kitchen, and I hope that this book serves you and your kitchen well too. You can pre-order it here and then it will be printing in the next week or two! WOW! I can’t believe this day is finally here.
P.S. If you are a blogger, I do have a limited amount of review copies to send out. Contact me via the contact form if you are interested and I will see what I can do!