Beautiful and delicious doesn’t have to be complicated. Not at all. I like a soup that has such a variety of aromatic flavors, that with each spoonful I’m wondering just what precisely they put in there to make it taste like this. This is one of those soups. It contains only a few simple and natural ingredients -chances are you’re even working with things you already have in your fridge and pantry- but you’re getting a fantastic result.
All you need is a simple bowl, a spoon and let your journey begin.
1 1/2 to 2 bell peppers, roasted
2 to 3 heaping tbsp corn
1 can of diced tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 medium onion
3 cups chicken broth
Couple green peppers, canned
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Salt & Pepper
Optional: few drops Worcestershire sauce
Optional: 1/3 to 1/2 green chili pepper
Even the vegetables have issues my house, I tell you. These bell peppers were going through a serious identity crisis – they simply couldn’t choose color.
I took them out of their misery, though. Roasted them, put them in a bowl and covered them with foil.
After 5 to 10 minutes, they will have cooled enough for you to handle them. Peeling them is child’s play now, the skin will come right off. Don’t try to remove every charred little speck -or what some people do, which I consider to be sacrilege; rinse them- the charred bits here and there will even add flavor! Give them a rough chop.
Do the same with the onion and grate the garlic while you’re at it.
Now I made a serious mistake (woe is me) and didn’t notice until opening the can I actually bought mild green peppers. Doesn’t really matter, though, just wanted them for their characteristic flavor anyway. I just added 1/2 green chili pepper to the recipe to put a bit warmth in the soup (I didn’t use the seeds this time). If you’re using hot green peppers omit this step.
I’m using my Dutch oven for this, nothing beats soup from a Dutch oven. Now I’m Dutch, but have to admit that, funny enough, even though these cast iron pots find their origin in my country (late 1600′s) they’re not as commonly used here as they are in the US.
Anyway, this is a fairly large oval one, which is actually a bit too big for a soup I’m preparing for only 2 people. One of these days I’ll splurge and buy myself a fancy red Le Creuset, but until then I’ll have to do with this green monster. Pour in 2 tbsp oil (the edge is not dirty, mind you, it’s still a little sticky because I seasoned it recently).
Once the oil is hot, sautee the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and peppers and give it two more minutes. Plunge in the tomatoes, and don’t be like me, wear an apron when you do this! Wondering why I bought such a sturdy black apron a few weeks ago, I keep forgetting to actually wear it.
Pour in the broth, add salt (I’ve used 1/2 tsp), pepper, thyme and oregano and bring to a boil. Pop the lid on and boil, over medium heat, for roughly 20 to 25 minutes. It’s gonna smell pretty darn good!
After 20 minutes the soup will be done. Take the lid off, smell the soup, see its gorgeous color and say ‘wow‘. Yes, this is a very important step in the whole cooking process.
We’re gonna puree it. It will bring all the flavors together and will thicken the soup. If you use a rod mixer just go for a few squeezes, don’t puree the heck out of it, you should still see some texture in there. If you’re going to transfer the soup to a blender or food processor, go for roughly 50% of the soup, blitz and pour it back in the pan. Now add a few tbsp corn to it. Check the seasoning -mine needed a little more salt- and put it back on the stove for another 2 minutes over high heat, until the soup is hot again. This is all there is to it.
Grab a few white bowls. No seriously, you’re supposed to serve colorful soup in bowls that you know will bring out the color even more! Serve with a little sour cream spooned on top and garnish with chives, basil, or whatever you have lying around.
Now admit it looks pretty and colorful.