What's in Season?
This simple soup is a great way to use up whatever vegetables are currently in-season and abundant. Or even just whatever is about to go bad in your refrigerator. In Ontario, the farmer's markets are currently exploding with zucchini, asparagus, and wild edibles like fiddlehead ferns. We are also finally getting the good tomatoes going after months of canned or the flavourless, anemic varieties shipped in from far away that I avoid like the plague.
This is the Soup of The Week and features roasted tomatoes, onions, roasted and fresh garlic, zucchini, carrots, and peas. You can adjust your vegetables according to what you have on hand or what is in season in your part of the world. The end result will be fantastic no matter what.
Start With a Good Stock
A good stock is the basis for all of my soups and stews. Always homemade. Every week I make a big pot of chicken or beef stock. Depending on what bones I have stockpiled in the freezer, I may also just make a generic meat bone broth of different varieties. I always add onions, carrot and celery trimmings, and bay leaf to my stock for flavour but my favourite addition is an herb called lovage. I do not know why lovage is not a more popular culinary herb here because it adds a secret something in the background that is absolutely delicious but hard to pinpoint. It grows freely and easily like a weed so you can grow it from seed in a container. I have never found it fresh in grocery stores, only dried at European focused markets.
It's a real shame. So if you can find lovage, consider adding it to your stocks.
You can also use vegetable stock here. Vegetable stock has the advantage of cooking up a lot faster.
Roasted or Grilled Vegetables?
Roasting or grilling your vegetables is key to the depth of flavour of this summertime soup. Either method provides the same result taste-wise, but grilling outside is nicer now that hot summer days are upon us.
I use frozen peas at the very end as fresh peas are hard to capture at just the right moment of freshness and sweetness. It's the one vegetable I use from frozen and always have a bag ready of.
I like to partially blend this soup with an immersion blender but just to get most of the charred tomatoes and zucchini melted into the broth. Leaving some chunks of the grilled vegetables provides a nice contrast and visual appeal.
Have you made this soup? Let me know what you think in the comments, and check out last week's Soup of The Week -- Portuguese Caldo Verde.Print
Summertime Grilled Vegetable Soup
The perfect summertime soup that makes use of whatever is in season. Grilling or roasting the vegetables brings out the natural sweetness.
This makes a big batch of soup to eat throughout the week. Freezes well!
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 30
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Category: Soup
- Method: Grilling & Boiling
- Cuisine: World
- 1.5 litres of homemade stock (chicken, beef, vegetable)
- 4 large tomatoes
- 3 rutabagas
- 2 medium zucchinis
- 1 bunch of carrots
- 2 medium onions
- 2 cups frozen (or fresh) green peas
- 1 tablespoon roasted garlic
- 5 cloves fresh garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon lard (or: olive oil, tallow, ghee)
- 1 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Sea salt & pepper to taste
- Prep your vegetables: mince the garlic, chop the carrots.
- Preheat your grill to medium-high.
- If roasting garlic on the grill alongside the other vegetables, wrap the cloves in foil.
- Coat your vegetables (EXCEPT carrots and peas which will NOT be grilled) in melted lard or olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and grill directly until char marks form.
- Roughly chop the vegetables except for the tomatoes.
- In a large pot, heat the lard (or oil of choice) and sauté the carrots, add the garlic as the carrots start to brown, and sauté for a further 60 seconds.
- Add the tomato paste and sauté until the paste starts to brown.
- Deglaze the pan with a splash of stock and scrape up any fond with a wooden spoon.
- Add your stock and bring to a boil before lowering the heat to medium.
- Add the grilled tomatoes and half of the zucchini.
- With an immersion blender blend until smooth.
- Add the remainder of your vegetables except for the peas.
- Add the paprika, red pepper flakes, and salt & pepper to taste.
- Simmer for 20 minutes.
- Stir in the green peas and simmer for 2 more minutes.
- Remove from heat and enjoy.
Use whatever vegetables are in season. Mix it up!