COLD CARROT, COCONUT, CURRIED SOUP!

By Published On: August 30th, 2015Categories: Chicken, Fish, Meals, Soup, Uncategorized0 Comments

This is one of the best cold soups I have ever tasted. It’s easy to make and versatile in that you can add different toppings to change the flavors. I found the recipe in Gourmet Magazine, but have doctored it a bit.

COLD CARROT, COCONUT, CURRIED SOUP

Ingredients:
About 1 bunch scallions, chopped (reserve some green tops for garnish)
1 small onion (about 2/3 cup), chopped
1 clove garlic
2 Tbsp. finely grated peeled fresh gingerroot (more if you like it super spicy!)
2 Tbsp. unsalted Butter or Olive Oil (Butter gives a richer flavor, but the soup really does not need it. I have made with both and Olive Oil is just as good.)
1 Tbsp. curry (I use a mild curry, but again if you like it hot, mix half and half/mild and hot.)
Salt/White pepper to taste (Go gentle with the pepper as the gingerroot already gives it a bit of heat. I use white because the black pepper mars the ‘look’ of the soup.)
Carrots, about 4 cups peeled  and cut into chunks or use your mini-max to chop.
3 cups chicken broth
2 (5.4 oz.) cans unsweetened coconut cream
1 5.4 oz. can water
2 Tbsp. lime juice (from 1 key lime)
Additional water for thinning soup if necessary.
Garnishes: we’ll discuss those later!

I like this brand of coconut cream and buy it online.

Preparation:
In a large heavy soup pot, cook carrots, chopped scallion, onion, garlic, and gingerroot in butter or olive oil. Add curry, salt and pepper. Cook over moderately low heat until the veg are softened. Add the broth. Simmer mixture covered about 20 minutes until carrots are very soft. Let it cool a bit and then put the mixture in a blender in batches with the coconut cream and blend until very smooth. Transfer to a bowl and stir in 1 Tbsp. lime juice and water to get the consistency you want. It should be a little bit thick. Cool for several hours, but really best to cool overnight–the flavors meld together beautifully. When you’re ready to serve, check seasonings again, add a little more water if necessary.

Garnishes: This soup is perfectly delicious with NO garnish, but it also lends itself to many different toppings. Try it with wild shrimp sautéed in butter, garlic, grated ginger and a little fresh lime juice. Finish with chopped basil and scallions.

Or top with avocado slices and chopped cod fish poached in coconut milk, scallions and basil. The cod almost tastes like lobster. Finish with scallions. The texture and flavor of the avocado add another element of rich, creaminess to this soup.

Or simply top with scallions.

I think it would also be great with a boneless, skinless chicken breast poached right in the soup and then removed to shred and placed back in the soup to chill.

HOMEMADE MAYONNAISE
So creamy, it almost looks like whipped cream!

Recently I have been making my own mayonnaise. Like making your own catchup, BBQ sauce or any number of other condiments, the freshness and flavor is SO much better than store-bought, plus no artificial ingredients. This recipe, made in a blender or food processor, is easy, and the mayo keeps for a couple weeks.  I like to make it with avocado oil, not olive oil. The olive oil may give it a bitter taste and the olive flavor is overpowering. If you use olive oil, try mixing it 50/50 with a more neutral oil. I am sure any mild oil would be good. This simple method for making in a blender or food processor is nearly foolproof!

Ingredients:
2 egg yolks, room temp*
1 whole egg, also room temp
1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more if needed**
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. salt, or more to taste
Big pinch white pepper
Up to 2 cups vegetable oil
1 tsp. or more of water to achieve correct consistency and improve the emulsification process
* If you forgot to pull your eggs out of the fridge an hour early, run them under hot water until they are warmed up. This is important as a room temp egg will hold the sauce together better than a cold one.
**You can add any acid, like vinegar, but I like the flavor of fresh lemon.

Preparation:
Put the egg yolks and whole egg, lemon juice, mustard, salt, and white pepper in a blender. Process for a few seconds to combine ingredients. With the blender or food processor running continuously, pour in the oil very slowly in driblets at first. This is important to start the emulsion process. As the mayo starts to thicken you can add in a very slow, thin stream, but wait about 30 seconds between additions to make sure each time you add oil it gets incorporated. When the sauce thickens you can add the oil in a steady stream. Finally, add 1 tsp., or more, of water. You may be thinking oil and water don’t mix, but the water actually improves the emulsification. Here’s the science behind it: Adding a teaspoon of water increases the space between fat droplets, helping them stay separate— a necessity when forming an emulsion. Plus adding a small quantity of water makes a lighter mayo. Transfer the finished mayo to a bowl covered with plastic wrap, glass jar, or plastic container, and store in the refrigerator. The fresher the eggs, the longer it keeps. Do not store in an aluminum container as it will turn your mayo grayish.

The variations on a mayonnaise theme are endless: Garlic (aka aioli); chipotle; curry; tarragon; wasabi or horseradish mayo and on and on…Experiment!

Last time I told you about a ranch my husband and I recently visited just outside of Bisbee, AZ in McNeal. I am impressed that the 47 Ranch is totally off the grid using solar and wind power exclusively for their entire operation. They raise grass-fed, organic cattle, sheep, pigs, and goats (currently raised at a nearby ranch).

I love goat, but have never had a goat burger. I wanted the true taste of goat so just seasoned the meat with salt and pepper and put them in a hot frying pan to cook to a medium-rare perfection. This burger was succulent, rich, and had a mild goat flavor, reminiscent of venison! I grew up eating venison and to think a farm-raised goat could taste quite as good was a wonderful surprise. I cooked my burgers in a pan as I did not want to lose one bit of juice by grilling and topped them with sautéed mushroom and avocado. Next time, I will top them with a generous portion of goat cheese! Wonder if Bobby Flay makes goat burgers in his restaurant?

I served the goat burgers with grilled zucchini and coleslaw made with the above homemade mayo.

Here are some photos from the 47 Ranch. To learn more, go to this article which ran a while back in Edible Baja magazine: http://ediblebajaarizona.com/a-ranchs-observation
Or visit them every Thursday at the Farmer’s Market in Sierra Vista or Saturday morning at the Market in Bisbee.

Pigs are such happy and inquisitive creatures!
Ranch-hand, Vanessa and our host for the afternoon.
Her assistant, Eloise, a college intern from France.
Me and Leroy, a rescued calf who will be raised at the ranch.
That’s all for today. Next time, I will share stories from another local rancher who raises goats and makes her own cheese.
 
Happy cooking to you…until we meet again!

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