Deep Freeze vs. Divas’ Soups

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All soups, stews and chilis taste better the second time around.  Here are a few thoughts on our secrets to great soup.

My husband loves pea soup, not my favorite dish.  But, I had a ham bone left over from Christmas dinner — waste not, want not — so I made the soup with it.  I prefer it as a vegetarian dish.

…and A Diva Dishes.  I love pea soup so much I’ll even eat Progresso.  In law school this was a staple because I lived on $50.00 a week.  

For Christmas my stepson gave me an Italian cookbook.  The pasta fagioli jumped out at me.  I was shocked when Sue told me it was easy to make.  What was she talking about?  This was a multi-step recipe soaking and rinsing beans.

…and A Diva Dishes.  It’s easy because I don’t soak the beans in water overnight!  I use cannelini beans from the can.  Mimi started the soup with chopped carrots, celery and onion.  I don’t do that either.  And she put rosemary in the soup — that would be a sin in an Italian household.

Left over stale bread from the bakery inspired the ribollita.  It’s funny this is not just a cold weather soup.  You may see it again in August or September when the local tomatoes are phenomenal.  This soup just gets better and better from day-to-day.  After all it literally means “reboiled”.

…and a Diva Dishes.  The only time I’ve had ribollita is when Sue and her husband and our family were in Tuscany together.  The owner of the restaurant had a little too much chianti at that point yet, he served us a wonderful meal — we were in his hands because there was no menu.  We had a choice:  ribollita or pasta!

What inspired me to make cream of broccoli soup?  It’s easy and I was feeling lazy.  I wanted to put a twist on it  and added lemon zest, a squeeze of lemon juice and a couple of handfuls of spinach to make it green.  When I’m feeling health conscious the creaminess comes from low-fat ricotta, sour cream or yogurt.  This time, I went all out and used heavy cream.

…and a Diva Dishes.  Well the heavy cream is the reason it was real good.  I can’t remember the last time I made cream of broccoli soup — we used to have it at least twice a winter.  I follow one of Martha Stewart’s earliest recipes.  The celery seed is absolutely what makes the soup.  Really, there’s a million different things you could do with this soup and it will taste good.