The Aspiring Soup Chef!

Creamy Zucchini and Pesto Soup

Posted in Uncategorized by charyness on October 17, 2009
Creamy Zucchini and Basil Pesto Soup!
Creamy Zucchini and Basil Pesto Soup!

This post is 2 days late, but having created such a wonderful, visually appealing art-piece, much to the obscene delight of my inner soup-narcissist, I decided to take a day off to gloat over this soup’s beauty. YES beauty. Now excuse ME for having a sentimental and intimate relationship with my soup. ahem.

Okay seriously now, this soup takes just as good as it looks. No kidding. I over-killed with the zucchinis and given that my mother isn’t really a connoisseur of good food and good presentation, I had to make do with chilling my soup overnight to save it for the next day.

Not bad for a first time! A little uneven and rough as you can see above but I did it! and I am content. (:

Now this recipe is, too, from Murdoch books as is the Creamy Asparagus one (note I say ‘creamy’ and not ‘cream’, indicating my very staunch health-conscious beliefs) but I took the liberty of adding my own portions and reducing, even omitting the more unhealthier ingredients.

Here it goes:

Basil pesto recipe


2 cups fresh Basil Leaves

1/4 cup parmesan reggiano ( i’m poor so i used plain parmesan SUE ME)

1/4 extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup pine nuts

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

2 cloves of garlic

a dash of salt/paprika(optional: i didn’t add these but i’ve read in places that you can)


There are many variations of pesto recipes available online, some even using brazil nuts, goodness knows. But these seem to be the standard ingredients so this is the one I’ve used.

And now for the soup!

Fresh Zucchini. Best buy them small, no spots, firm.
Fresh Zucchini. Best buy them small, no spots, firm.

Ingredients

Briefing: One soup pot with lid, soup ladle, measuring cup, 2 medium sized bowls, 1 large bowl, blender, tablespoon(s)

700g Zucchini thinly sliced

2 crushed garlic cloves

700ml chicken stock

2 small red onions finely chopped (diced)

2 tablespoons whipping cream

Black pepper (optional)

Basil pesto

Dried Basil Leaves

1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Sliced Zucchini.
Sliced Zucchini.

Preparation:

Briefing: Remove stems from Zucchini, wash one large bowl, tablespoons, measuring cup, 1 soup pot with lid, blender, 1 small pot, soup ladle!

1. Cut a flat surface so your cylindrical zucchini won’t be rolling about like a madman. then chop into thin slices and place in a large bowl. Cut then thinly, so they get cooked thoroughly.

2. Meanwhile, in the small pot, add your chicken or vegetable stock and bring it to a boil, while you dice you onions and crush your garlic with a pestle and mortar

3. Sautee your onions and garlic with Extra Virgin Olive oil on medium heat! Sautee for about 5 mins, or until onions are lightly golden. Time it such that your stock is steadily reaching a boil!

Sautee
Sautee

4. Then add your stock and sliced zucchini the sauteed vegetables! Since the stock should be boiling by now, you’ll get a lovely ‘woosh’ (sorry not Booms) when the stock and sizzling sauteed vegetable are combined. I know I may be a science student but I can’t explain this very well. Oh the embarrassment. Okay, do add your dried basil leaves now, because dried herbs will need a longer time to release their flavour. Add about 1/4 teaspoon of dried basil, and a dash of black pepper (if desired. I am a black pepper fanatic fyi.)

Zucchini and Stock added.
Zucchini and Stock added.

5. Now sit back, relax, facebook, twitter everyone about your zucchini adventures, while leaving this nice mix to simmer with the lid on, after it has reached a boil, for 20mins to half an hour or until the zucchinis are soft.

Left to simmer.
Left to simmer.

6. In a blender, puree the mixture carefully until it is smooth and place it in the large bowl. Do this in batches.

Puree Making.
Puree Making.

7. After entire mixture has been puree-ed, return to the pot and add the Whipping Cream. Okay, the reason for adding the cream separately is because Whipping Cream curdles when boiled. So DO NOT BOIL IT! unless you decide to use heavy cream then good luck to your arteries. I am very health-conscious this way.

8. Stir in the cream till it has evenly been mixed throughout the puree mixture. Then heat again if the mixture has become rather cold.

Garnish and Serve.
Garnish and Serve.

¡VOILA!

Add Basil Pesto to Garnish, or stir in a tablespoon into soup. your preference! The serving suggestion above includes a cherry tomato and zucchini skin drizzled with black pepper. whipping cream was used to make the flower pattern.

Recipe adapted from Murdoch Books, by Charlene Torres-Tan.  (:

INTERESTING SIDE NOTE: I made quite a large batch so I kept the leftovers in the fridge in an air-tight container. The next day after I got back from a long day of  running errands, I found myself rather peckish and decided to raid my fridge and found the leftover soup. Being really lazy, I decided to just drink it cold like Vichyssoise and IT TASTED REALLY GOOD! So do give it a shot (: