Friday, April 9, 2010

Sorrel-Kale Soup

I've found that if someone doesn't run around in gardening, fresh fooding, or seasonal cooking crowds, they're unlikely to know about sorrel. At least around here, anyway. I myself discovered sorrel last spring when I moved out to the farm for the season. I'm glad I did. The tangy, lemony taste is quite refreshing.

When you work for a farm or at a farmer's market, the number one question* asked of you when presenting an unfamiliar veggie is "how do I use it?" Last spring, I quickly learned a good reply for sorrel: put it in hummus! During my first week at the farm, we started a batch of hummus and halfway through, realized we didn't have any lemons. Why not use sorrel, some smart person asked. Why not indeed? Sorrel hummus, perfectly lemony and snappy green to boot, was just as delicious as the regular kind.

This post, contrary to popular belief, is not about sorrel hummus. It's about soup. Sorrel soup. Because really, when someone asks their farmer how to use sorrel, hummus is an unconventional answer. You're likely to get sorrel soup as a reply - it's a traditional Eastern European dish. Having returned from a visit to said farm with a healthy sorrel plant of my very own, I decided to hack the thing to pieces and make myself some soup for lunch.

After google and food blog searching, I learned that most sorrel soup recipes out there include heavy cream or fresh eggs, and sometimes both. (See a recipe at our new blog, Oops, Sooo Not Vegan! Just kidding). Thus, my recipe creation involved a few adjustments and a little bit of creativity. In other words, I got to feel like a real, live chef!

Sorrel-Kale Soup

1 tablespoon Earth Balance
1 fresh onion, chopped
1 medium potato, peeled and chopped
2 loosely packed cups sorrel, washed and chopped
four leaves curly kale, washed and chopped (Note: I added this because I had it in the fridge and it needed to go. Totally optional and not usually included in sorrel soup)
3 cups vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
about 1 cup almond milk, more or less to taste

Melt the Earth Balance in a medium pot. Add the potato and onion, as well as some salt and pepper, and saute until the onions are soft. Add the sorrel and kale and stir - watch the greens become bright. Feel healthy. Add the vegetable stock and simmer for about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, and whip out your immersion blender. Don't have one? Then simply transfer soup to a blender or food processor, and blend for a few seconds. At this point, stir in the almond milk, and add a little more salt or pepper if it needs it. Blend again, until you reach your desired texture. Eat!

Unfortunately, I executed this mission without the help of my fellow bloggers, and thus have no pictures to post :( HOWEVER, there's a rumor that Pancake may come over tonight. I heard that we might make treats and I even heard there might be a post about it! Should the whispers be true, I will make her photograph my look-mom, I'm a real chef! soup so you can see it. Stay tuned.


*the second most-asked question at the farmer's market is, "is it easy to grow?" Check it out.

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