Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Not all the appealing colors of autumn are found in the turning trees. The soup pot can take on its own sort of autumn splendor.
In a nice pool of olive oil, sweat down a leek, a half a red onion, that leftover piece of shallot; add a chopped anaheim, a rib of celery or some fennel stalk, a diced carrot. A couple of large cloves of garlic, chopped, are next. Now the red cabbage and some biggish chunks of butternut, or another squash. Add water and/or stock about two-thirds the way up the pot. Salt can go in now, just add it by the pinch, and taste. You'd be surprised the sort of savor you can get out of a mess of vegetables. When you're getting your simmer on, toss in diced patty pan, green beans, a potato.
Some shell beans, a bit of kale, a tomato--all those would be welcome. Have to have thyme in a soup like this; I'm pretty much addicted to that herb, I think. Simmer it until you're ready to eat. A drizzle of olive oil, a piece of grilled bread, a scatter of grated cheese, if you like.
The soup simmered on the Bide-A-Wee hearth while three brown trout from the season's final outings smoked on the grate on this sunny October Sunday.
Text and photos copyright 2010 by Brett Laidlaw