Monday, November 3, 2008

Tonight's Harvest

Tonight I harvested kale for our soup, and pulled a few of the baby carrots. It doesn't seem that they are getting any bigger, but I left a few in the ground because I'm curious how long the carrots will last in this weather for reference in future year. One of the most regular ways we've eaten our kale this year is in this tortilla soup recipe. It lets us use a little bit and enjoy it, without totally denuding the plants to create a saute.
The light in photos is poor because with the waning daylight I'm no longer at home during the week when the sun is bright. So our poor indoor lighting and a flash will have to do.

The kale and very baby carrots went into our Tortilla Soup. It's based on a recipe from but we've modified it to make it our own. Its very similar in flavor to a recipe I grew up with called Mexican Vegetable Stew. So we've combined the two recipes to get the best of both.

Tortilla Soup

To make the tortilla strips:
Preheat the oven to 350. Cut a stack of 6 to 8 corn tortillas in half and then into thin strips. Toss with olive oil and salt and lay out on baking sheet. Bake for 10-20 minutes (depending on your oven) until golden and crisp.

For the soup:
Basically you saute an onion and garlic in some olive oil. Add tsp cumin and 2 tsp coriander and 1 tsp chili powder. Saute the spices for a bit and then add 1/2 of a 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes. Cook the tomatoes down a bit until thicker. Add 1 cup water and puree this base. Return the base to the pan and add 5 more cups of water. Bring to a simmer. We like to add left over chicken, corn off the cob (or out of the can), sliced zucchini if available, and shredded kale.
Simmer until chicken is warm and veggies are cooked. Serve with goat cheese or cheddar cheese and tortilla strips.

You can pretty much add any vegetable you feel appropriate. Kidney beans or black beans would be good too. Tonight we had half a sweet potato that I sliced thin, microwaved for 2 minutes and then threw in to the soup. It was a nice sweet contrast to the more savory flavors.


Dan said...

I have a case of baby carrots as well with my fall planting but mine are even smaller then yours. I will have to plant a lot sooner next season.

If you want better lighting in your photo's you should try using a tripod. I picked up a pretty inexpensive one at walmart ($30) and then do a longer exposure without the flash. All dslr and point&shoot cameras have manual mood so you can set how long the shutter is open for to either let in more or less light.

I have yet to try the plum cake, I remember every time I come to your blog but then forget. I need to add it to a list I think.

DP Nguyen said...

Carrots always take a long time to grow, but our carrots were one of the few things that survived the frost. Enjoy your soup!