The one dish Anna likes to cook is soup, and Dave agrees that she's a pro. But when I questioned her about her soup recipes she looked at me with surprise and informed me that soup is a dish that you make by foraging in the fridge. Rather than checking cookbooks, researching recipes, going to the store to buy ingredients, (steps I do routinely), she takes the opportunity to empty the fridge of leftovers to create a soup that's different every time.
Inspired by Anna's creative spirit (did I mention that she's an artist? ) I decided to try a soup with ingredients I had on hand. And because it was the Monday after Thanksgiving, I had an advantage. The fridge was loaded with beautiful fresh vegetables and holiday leftovers, so I took them out and got to work chopping on my cutting board. What a treasure trove of produce for my impromptu soup!
|Shallots, leeks, fennel, carrots, celery, Ricki's wild rice & mushroom stuffing, canned garbanzos and fresh herbs|
In olive oil I sauteed two chopped leeks and three shallots, added two chopped carrots, two stalks of celery and a half bulb of fennel. When the veggies gave off a lovely, fragrant aroma I poured in some TJ's chicken broth which I always try to keep on hand, and brought it to a boil. After about twenty minutes I added the leftover mushroom-and-wild rice stuffing, thoroughly rinsed garbanzos, and fresh herbs from my garden. Again I let the mixture simmer for half an hour and my soup was done.
|Vegetable Stuffing Soup in a vintage Dansk casserole|
We enjoyed the reheated soup for dinner and I held off adding the leftover turkey Ricki had packed for us on Thanksgiving. This way we could enjoy a truly vegetarian meal (oops, except for the chicken broth) created entirely from on-hand ingredients, a la Anna. I can't wait to do it again!