Sunday, August 16, 2015

Spicy Zucchini Soup

It's summertime, so I love to eat cold soups as a starter! Making a tasty soup for a dinnerparty is a great way to have a succesfull evening while still having time to chat with your guests. It is easily made and can be prepared in advance. The only thing you have to do is serve them!

The soup I made wasn't for vegetarians, because I used homemade chickenstock, but of course you could add some vegetable stock instead. Since making this zucchini soup is sooooo easy when you already have a stock prepared (or if you use a stock cube) I will also add my tips for making chicken stock...

Whenever we eat chicken, I choose either a whole chicken or chicken legs. For example, we make our Green Chicken, or any other chicken recipe. We have our family meal, and when cleaning up after dinner, I collect all the chickenbones and rests of the vegetables which have not been touched. Instead of throwing things away, I put it in a pan, add fresh water, and usually some carrots, celery, onions, a few black peppercorns, parsely or whatever useful ingredients I find in my fridge or garden. Leave it on the stove for about an hour, cool it down and put it in the fridge overnight.

The next (or another following day) I put it on the stove for a couple of hours more. After which I sieve it, season it, cool it again and use it as a base for various soups. The easiest is chickensoup, for which I use the rests of the meat on the bones. Pulling the meat of the chickenbones is a great meditative activity...  Then add some vegetables and vermicelli and you have a delicious and wholesome chicken soup. Especially recommended for when you have flu patients in your house, they'll inmediately feel better after this homemade soup.

To make your stock even more delicious, you could roast the bones and vegetables before you put them into the water. It is also possible to add a variety of herbs, or other flavours. I sometimes use thyme, garlic or ginger, but usually I prefer the more plain version.

Back to the Spicy Zucchini Soup, super easy to make, a very good start for a dinnerparty or your family dinner. For the kids, you can just skipp the sriracha if they are not a fan of spicy food (yet). You can make it in advance and have it at the dinnertable within a minute. Perfect for summer! For our family dinner I added an icecube with an oreganoflower, just to make it look nice and because it was available in our garden. (The oreganoflowers, not the icecubes..). Flavourwise it would have been better (even though we finished our soup long before the oreganoflavour reached the glass) to have a mintflower icecube. But, hey, it looks nice!

Spicy Zucchini Soup
Author: me

Ingredients for a small pan of soup:
2 onions
4 cloves of garlic
2 small (or 1 large) zucchinis
A splash of olive oil
1/2 liter of chickenstock (or any other stock)
Salt & pepper
For garnish: a (edible) flower in an icecube

Chop the onions, garlic and zucchini. Gently fry the onion, after 2-3minutes add the garlic and zucchini. Fry for another few minutes, add the stock and blend with an immersionblender. Put the pan in the sink filled with a layer of icecoldwater and icecubes just below the level of soup in the pan. If neccessary, change the surrounding cooling water once or twice. When cooled down, season to taste, prefill your serving glasses and put in the fridge.
Prior to serving, add an icecube and a few drops of sriracha.

Score: 3 out of 5, but for simplicity and advance preparation 5 out of 5.
Tip: without sriracha also perfect for small children. Check out the text above for tips on making the chickenstock.
Time: 45 minutes, of which 10 minutes preparing, the rest is cooling.
Amount of work vs waiting: low
Degree of difficulty: easy
Ideal for: summerdinner, simple family dinner, dinnerparty

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