My husband and I recently took another foray into the world of international cooking. Our latest Cooking with Compassion episode brings Mexico to our kitchen where we cooked up some Zucchini and Poblano Soup.
Now, a few things before I begin…
- The subject of soup is sort of a joke in our house because at some point early in our relationship, I declared quite definitively,
“I don’t like soup.”
Although I still operate under that premise, since making that statement I’ve made (and enjoyed) many different kinds of soup. And without fail each time I make soup, Chris says,
“But you don’t like soup.”
This was no exception.
- I’m not a huge fan of zucchini. I occasionally cook with it since it’s good for you and many Italian recipes use it, but it’s pretty low on the list of my preferred ingredients.
However, I have made several different versions of squash soup in the past and they’ve always turned out great, so I decided this was worth a try, even knowing I was going to get flak for not liking soup.
- From watching the Food Network I’ve learned to always read through the entire recipe before you start cooking. In doing so, I discovered that the directions section of this recipe is lacking a few not-so-minor instructions. Namely, what to do with the poblanos and the garlic.
So, channeling my inner celebrity chef, I took some creative license based on my vast and incredibly refined expertise in soup making, which means just winged it.
Now, onto the cooking.
First of all, this recipe was a good one because the ingredients are very common and easy to assemble.
I started by chopping the six zucchinis and adding them to a pot of boiling water. Since zucchini is a relatively soft squash, I only had to boil them for about 10 minutes.
While they were boiling, I chopped the onion, poblanos and garlic. I had a small onion, so I went ahead and chopped the whole thing, which was more like a 1/2 cup.
I decided that the best way to use the peppers and garlic was to sauté them with the onion so the heat would bring out the flavor. I sautéed the mixture with some butter for a few (4-5) minutes.
When the zucchini was soft, I used a slotted spoon to transfer it into the food processor and added a ladle full of the water.
I blended the zucchini in a food processor for about a minute until it liquefied. It was bright green (think baby food green.)
Then I added the sautéed veggie mixture and a couple more ladles of zucchini water and processed it for another couple of minutes.
Once I was done, I transferred the soup back to the pot, added the cream and simmered it on low.
After adding a generous amount of salt and pepper, Chris and I each took a taste, and decided it still needed something to kick it up a notch. I pulled out our go-to flavor enhancer and added a dash (or nine) of Jalapeno Tabasco sauce before letting it simmer.
Meanwhile, I pan-fried the tortilla triangles in a small amount of oil. (The recipe calls for 1/4 cup, which would make them more deep-fried, but we decided to go the healthier route.) They turned out great … nice and crispy.
When the chips were done, I served up the soup, added a generous amount of cheese (shredded mozzarella) and the tortilla chips.
Verdict: Three thumbs up! (Two for my husband and one for me.) The soup was good!
The flavor was subtle, yet distinct. The cheese melted quickly to add some variety and texture, and the chips were also a great texture addition.
I knew it was a hit when Chris went back for a second bowl. And for this girl who doesn’t like zucchini, I have to say, it was much more enjoyable than I expected.
Even if it was soup.
Oh, and the best part of this recipe? It’s good for you! You can go back for seconds and get another good helping of veggies.
Give this recipe a try and let us know what you think.
And Angelica, if you read this, let us know what to do with the peppers and garlic.
What I made may not have been true Mexican Zucchini and Poblano Soup, but it made a great meal, nonetheless.