One Soup – Three Ways

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I feel extra enthusiastic about this post partly because I think we are on to something good here. But also because this headline speaks so much to my magazine-publishing-heart (from my previous career).
This is a dinner concept that we have played around with lately and it works particularly well for families with sensitive eaters or allergies. The idea is built around cooking one recipe base and then making some last minute add-ins to suit various preferences. Or to simply turn the leftovers of one dish into a new one the next day by using other add-ins. The base can be anything from a salad, a basic stew, a cooked grain, a good sauce or, as here, a soup.
In this recipe we are taking a simple tomato broth soup in three different directions.
The kids love this with tortellini (or any other pasta) dropped into it. They actually prefer it to tomato sauce. Luise and I like to let a chunk of mozzarella (or burrata cheese) melt in the soup and serve it with some leftover cooked quinoa to make it more filling. Another favorite of ours is to stir chopped kale, chickpeas and a little chili paste into the broth and topping it with avocado for a chunkier vegan version.
The way it usually works is that we cook one big batch of broth and then pour the kids version in a smaller sauce pan, drop in the ravioli and let it cook for another minute or two until soft. While we stir in or other add-ins to our version. It’s also an excellent way to add some heat and more herbs to your own soup while keeping your kids or partners soup milder.
You of course don’t have to male them all, you can simply do one of them. Or mix these up, adding chickpeas to the ravioli or mozzarella to the kale. Or combine them all!
Think of it as good base to build from and use the last minute add-ins to give it your personal touch. If you like this concept we might be back with the same ideas applied on other meals in a later post.

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Simple Tomato Broth Soup
Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp ground paprika powder
3 carrots
3 celery stalks
1 x 400 g / 14 oz can crushed tomatoes
4 cups / 1 liter vegetable stock
sea salt

Fresh thyme
Fresh basil

Heat oil in a large thick-bottomed sauce pan on medium heat. Add tomato puree, onion, garlic and ground paprika and let sauté for 5 minutes. Peel and clean the carrots and celery and chop into bite-sized dices. Add to the pan and let sauté for a few more minutes. Then add chopped tomatoes and vegetable stock and let simmer for 15-20 minutes. Taste and adjust the flavoring, adding some fresh thyme or basil towards the end. Choose your favorite way of serving this soup, see recipe ideas below.

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Vegan Cavolo Nero & Chickpea Soup
Serves 4

1 batch Simple Tomato Soup (see recipe above)
5 leaves cavolo nero or kale, coarsely chopped
1/2 can cooked chickpeas (approx 100 g)
1 tsp harissa or other chili (optional)
1 avocado, to serve
lemon zest, to serve
olive oil

Stir in chopped cavolo nero, chickpeas and harissa to the soup during the last minutes of cooking. Laddle the soup into serving bowls and top with avocado slices, lemon zest and a splash of olive oil.

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Tortellini Drop Soup
1 batch Simple Tomato Soup (see recipe above)
1 bag good quality fresh tortellini
micro greens or sprouts, to serve

grated parmesan cheese, to serve

Simply drop the tortellini straight into the soup as it’s cooking on the stove. After about two minutes (check the pasta package for exakt time), it’s ready to serve. Divide into soup bowls, grate over parmesan cheese and top with micro greens and drizzle with olive oil.

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Quinoa & Mozzarella Melt Soup
1 batch Simple Tomato Soup (see recipe above)
2 cups cooked quinoa
200 g buffalo mozzarella or burrata cheese

Laddle the soup into serving bowls and add a couple of spoonfuls cooked quinoa to each bowl. Break the cheese into smaller pieces and let it melt in the hot soup. Top with a drizzle of olive oil, black pepper and fresh thyme.