Sunday, May 30, 2010

Verging on Blue Soup

I was having a blue soup experience. If you've read or seen Bridget Jones' Diary, you know how she tried to make her friends dinner and ended up serving blue soup. The meal I was making was verging on blue soup.

Okay, that's an exaggeration. But a lot of things were going wrong.

It started when I broke a yolk while separating some eggs, and my whites were tainted. Then when I made a fresh bowl of whites and whipped them, they splattered all over the counter. My chocolate roulade, a rolled log cake, broke when I rolled it up (probably because I lost too many whites in the afore mentioned splatter). My focaccia didn't rise (possibly due to expired yeast). I burned some dried apricots that I was making for a puree to fill the broken cake, and I still can't get the burned bits off the non-stick pan. My new focaccia, made with freshly purchased yeast expiring in 2011, rose and baked up nicely except for the sun-dried tomatoes on top - which burned.

To top it all off, my faucet sprung a leak and drenched the cabinet space under the sink.

So while I'm boiling the rest of the dried apricots for take two of the puree, while swirling it into fresh whipped cream that I whipped in a big enough bowl to avoid splatter, while stuffing the cream and apricot filling into the broken cake hoping it would stick together in some semblance of layers, while picking blackened tomatoes off an otherwise golden focaccia and mopping water up from under the sink, I started thinking that maybe this whole cooking thing had gotten the best of me.

But then I found the cups. Years ago I had acquired a free set of tea cups and since I like to drink my tea from fat mugs I never had any use for them - until now.

I made a cold avocado soup, creamy from avocados, spicy from jalapeno pepper and Tabasco sauce, tangy from lemon juice and yogurt, hearty from navy beans, and frothy and light from pureeing, which whipped air into it. Each serving was more than a sip, less than a cup, a perfect starter to soothe any anxiety that the rest of the meal was less than perfect.

And the soup was green, not blue, and meant to be that way.

Avocado Soup (edited from Cooking Light)

  • 2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 3/4 cups chopped avocado (about 2)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup rinsed and drained canned navy beans
  • 1/2 cup fat-free plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
Combine broth and next 9 ingredients (through jalapeño) in a blender; puree until smooth, scraping sides. Ladle 1 1/4 cups avocado mixture into each of 4 bowls, or 8 little cups.

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