Did you know there were Soup People and Non-Soup People?
Yeah, me neither. I just assumed all people ate soup since, you know, it's soup and not, like, foie gras or veal or something all controversial with its own blood-throwing advocacy group or whatever.
In addition to being labeled a Soup Person (which I'm fine with, by the way, this wasn't like being labeled a Snooty Bitch, which I might very well be but don't want to necessarily be labeled), I've come to further label myself as a Tomato-based Soup Person.
Why all the labels? Well. Why the hell not AND it's one of those little things Bubba and I learned about each other after we moved in together and the wintertime came and I started making things like minestrone and chicken soup (which, yes, does not include tomatoes, but go with me, here) and he would get all, "Yeah, OK. I'll eat it." rather than, "Fuck yeah I want chicken soup!" which is what I was expecting.
See, when we moved in together, there were shockingly few things we didn't see eye-to-eye on, so this was a big discovery. I realize people have bigger relationship/marital discoveries than soup preferences, but we haven't had many, so this counts. For us.
Friends, Bubba is a Cream Soup Person.
So, when I was all, "Fuck yeah, it's raining and I'm making chicken soup and this is going to be perfect!", he was thinking, "Fine. I'll eat this woman's chicken soup and then I'll sneak into the kitchen and make broccoli cheese soup or some other creamy business that will illicit my current response from HER next time. Take that!"
Ok, so it probably wasn't that malicious, since Bubba's such a nice guy and barely ever sneaks into the kitchen to make creamy business (enjoy that last comment for a moment), but I definitely get more excitement from him when I produce a baked potato soup than when I emerge triumphantly from the kitchen with a perfectly recreated bowl of my mom's chicken soup.
Not that it matters to me at that point because I'm already head down in the bowl, but I register the lackluster response nonetheless.
Anyway, the point of all this Tomato-based Soup Person vs Creamy Soup Person (there are also, I've learned, Broth Soup People, Chunky Soup People, Seafood Soup People and Bisque People) is that I made a tomato-based soup that we both liked and which I've now eaten four nights in a row without starting to hate it.
Those are a lot of miracles for one soup, people, and I'll ask you to recognize the significance.
The original recipe came from a chef at my office who so kindly indulged my begging after I had the soup for lunch and decided immediately that I must make it and have it for four nights in a row.
I then adjusted the recipe, or so I thought, to accommodate the smaller crowds at my house (2) rather than the hoards of folks at the cafe for lunch (150+).
Plus, my adjustments also meant that the soup was thicker, rather than ahem, soupier, and sort of approached the creamy sensation Bubba's always looking for. This was because I omitted the 1/2 gallon of vegetable broth the original recipe called for. So you know. In case you want to serve this soup to your whole neighborhood OR want a soupier, um, soup.
What it comes down to is that I do most of the cooking, and I like tomato-type soups and Bubba will eat most anything anyway, so when I decide I'm going to make something that may not be his exact #1 choice of whatever, I have to find some way to make it seem like it's for both of us when really it's mostly for me and my desire to relive my lunch soup fantasies.
I know. I'm a sick person. With a small life. And boring fantasies.
OK, all Soup Person rambling aside, allow me to share with you my amended recipe so that you may serve it four nights in a row, or perhaps only one night in a row if you have a family of 10, and maybe most people will like it even if they're staunch Creamy Soup People like Bubba.
Chickpea and Tomato Soup
Original Recipe by Dennis Feray, Pure Ingredients Cafe
My changes in BOLD
My changes in BOLD
2 cans of chickpeas (drained and rinsed well)
24 frozen whole homegrown tomatoes, thawed, skins removed, crushed (or 32 oz of canned, crushed tomatoes. Wendy says Muir Glen tomatoes are a good substitute for homecanned.)
1 yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 T ground coriander
1 bunch of cilantro, washed & chopped
1 bunch of parsley, washed & chopped
3 oz butter
Juice from 1 lemon
1 jalapeno seeded and minced (FOR GODSAKE - WEAR GLOVES)
1/2 jar of sliced HOT jalapenos, drained
Kosher salt & black pepper to suit
In a Large stock pot, on medium heat, sauté onions in all of the butter until translucent, add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 min.
If that's not the start of a fabulous meal, I don't know what is.
Add coriander, cilantro, parsley, jalapeno (fresh and canned) and sauté for about 2 min.
This soup is also awesome if you're feeling choppy with your new knives.
Then add tomatoes and chick peas.
Bubba: "No tomatoes are as good as OUR tomatoes." but I still encourage you to make this soup.
Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer.
Don't you just want to put your face in there? I know. Me too.
Simmer for about an hour and then remove from heat.
Add lemon juice and puree soup with a immersion blender. Season to your taste with salt and pepper.
Serve with a parsley garnish and, if you're fancy and fabulous, a swirl of olive oil.
If you're EXTRA FABULOUS and/or serving this to me, for some reason, swap the olive oil for truffle oil and let the swooning begin.
Proceed to defend the Tomato-based Soup empire.
Oh - almost forgot - I had this last night with with a toasted pita filled with melted cheddar and goat cheese and it was pretty fucking good, so I recommend that, too. You know, if you're ever serving it to me and want me to get all swoony.
Also, there was gin, but I doubt that was related to the swooning. It was more to blame for my early 8pm bedtime.