Warm up this Autumn with Savory Soups and Stews!

The days are getting shorter and colder and there’s nothing like coming home from a long day and whipping up a pot of warm, hearty soup or stew! I love nothing more, but often get stuck in soup ruts. Learning Center Chef-Instructor, Nina Lesser-Goldsmith came to my rescue this past Monday night at her “Savory Soups and Stews of Autumn” class. The Learning Center was packed with participants eager to learn new twists on soups and stews.

Nina started with a garam masala scented delicata squash soup with greek yogurt and moroccan olives. I make butternut squash soup all the time but this was such a unique twist on squash soup with curry style spices and olives. I would have never thought to put olives in squash soup but it is an amazing combination of sweet and salty! Next was a cheddar ale soup with bacon and rye croutons, talk about comfort! I can’t wait to make this one for my dad next time I’m home; any cheese and beer lover would go crazy for this soup. It was thick and creamy and had a nice zing from the Wolavers Brown Ale Nina added.

This past weekend I made beef stew, it was good but nothing compared to the rich and thick rosemary infused beef stew with fingerling potatoes and horseradish cream that Nina made! I will never make my bland beef stew again! She taught us the importance of developing flavor on each part of the stew by browning the meat and vegetables and deglazing (scraping the brown bits off the bottom) the pan with wine giving the stew amazing depth and richness. The soup Nina made next had a similar depth of flavor from the use of homemade chicken stock instead of boxed stock. It was a sausage and white bean stew with lacinato kale and lemon zest. I always use boxed stock and was shocked by how much better the soup tasted with homemade stock. Nina said that boxed stock tastes like “really salty cardboard liquid” and now I totally agree with her. She taught us simple tricks for making vegetable and a variety of meat stocks and I vow to never go back to boxed stock again!

Saving the best for last, my ultimate favorite from the class was a curried tomato soup with turmeric cream and fresh cilantro. I am a tomato soup addict and I always make the same fire roasted tomato soup that my mom taught me years ago, it’s delicious but nothing like this curried tomato soup. It was a bit spicy from the curry powder and zingy from the ginger, it hit all the right notes and I can’t wait to make it again!

Be sure to check for these recipes on our website soon and don’t miss out on November’s Learning Center classes where Nina will teach you how to make this Thanksgiving your most delicious one yet!


~Intern Extraordinaire