I am always on a hunt for unique soup recipes and this is one. While I was housesitting in San Jose looking after a loving adorable cat named Sylve back in March, I had the opportunity to peruse a wonderful Mexican Cookbook with her snuggled up to me.
Above: Awe, Sylvie is so cute!
Pecans, leeks and tomatos…sounded very interesting especially so with a smokey chile.
This soup seemed creamy to me even before I added the cashew cream! Must have been the cashews meets leaks pureed. I used two chipotle chiles that were in adobe sauce and it had a nice spicey bite. The soup is very earthy and warm to my tummy. It would be a perfect starter to a Mexican Fiesta dinner. The original recipe did not call for corn, but I added it at the very last minute (after the puree part) because both myself and my husband thought the end product needed some nice morsels after our first spoonfuls. We are not both fans of a soup that is 100% pureed. I was making vegetarian tacos with corn and zuchinni so at the very last minute I threw in corn into our bowls and voila – it finished the soup off perfectly! What an inpromtu adjustment can do to a dish! Love this soup now and would not make it without the corn.
Also, for the next time I make this soup, I am going to modify it 100% to Vegan, since I substituted cream for cashew cream – I was already half way there. So the next time, I am going to use olive oil instead of butter.
Note: Picture above is missing a cup of corn, which I added in at the end.
Ingredients (serves six) :
- 2 tbsp butter (sub with olive oil if you want a vegan version)
- 1 leek, white part only , sliced
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 2 dried chipotle or other smoked chilies ( I used two chipotles that were in Adobo Sauce)
- 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
- 1 clove (I used 3 cloves, just because I love cloves)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 3 tomatoes, peeled , seeded and finely chopped
- 8 3/4 veggie stock ( I used only 7 cups of stock, it seemed like if I was to use 8.75, it would have been too watery for myself)
- 1 cup cashew cream (This is made with blending cashews, lemon, water, olive oil and garlic in a vitamix blender)
- pinch grated nutmeg
- sea salt and pepper
- 1 cup of corn (This was added in at the last minute and not n the picture above)
- 18 pecans , roasted and coarsely chopped
- 2 sprigs parsley, finely chopped
Who would guess that these ingredients above would be the base of a soup?
- Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat. Add the leek and celery and cook, stirring gently, for 5 minutes.
- Add the pecans, chiles, sugar, clove, cinnamon stick, bay leaves and tomatoes and continue stirring gently until fragrant.
- Add the stock and continue to stir gently until the mixture comes to a boil. SImmer for 20 minutes, then remove from the heat and let cool.
- Remove and discard the bay leaves. Pour the mixture into a food processor until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into a clean pan and set over low heat, stirring gently until warmed through.
- Add the cream and corn and simmer, stirring constantly for another 5 minutes, then stir in the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
Serve immediatly with toasted pecans and sprinkled with parsely
Above: Simmer for 20 minutes.
Above: This is what the soup looks like after pureed and before adding in the cashew cream – looks creamy without the cream at that point!
The original recipe is from: Mexico The Cookbook, by Margarita Carrillo Arronte
What I Changed From Original Recipe:
- Substituted cream with cashew cream
- Added corn
- Used vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. Also only used 7 cups
- Will use olive oil in future instead of butter.