- By Elizma Burger
With the colder months ahead of us, we are switching to preparing hot dishes instead salads. One of my all-time favorite winter tradition is soup. There is just something about a hot bowl of soup that comforts me and pairing soup with bread excites me. The crunch of the bread complements the soup perfectly and one of the best parts is dipping a slice of crusty bread into the soup.
Here are 3 great soup and bread pairing ideas:
Cream of mushroom soup with truffle parmesan toasties
Cream of mushroom soup:
- 1 cup finely chopped onions
- 1 tbs butter
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1 tbs minced garlic
- 750g button mushrooms (or a mix of mushrooms)
- 2 x 25g chicken-flavour liquid stock concentrate sticks from Woolworths
- 2 x 25g mushroom-flavour liquid stock concentrate sticks from Woolworths
- 2 cups water
- 1 heaped tsp fresh thyme
- 1 cup cream
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp salt (This salt content is adjusted for the Woolies stock concentrate sticks I used. If you use a different brand, taste first and adjust as needed.)
For the toasties:
- baguette sliced on the diagonal
- truffle-flavoured oil (replace with good olive oil if you need to)
- wild rocket
- fresh lemon juice
- parmesan shavings
- Sweat off the onions over low heat in the butter and olive oil for five minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute or two. Turn up the heat, add the mushrooms and fry for 5 minutes.
- Next add the water, thyme and stock essence, turn the heat down again, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Liquidise in your food processor or liquidizer until velvety smooth. Place back on the heat, add the cream and black pepper. Taste and add the salt if need be.
- If it’s too thick for your liking, simply add more water at this stage, but remember to check your seasoning again if you do.
- To make the truffle toasties, very lightly brush or spritz the baguette slices on both sides with the truffle oil and pop under the grill to toast until crisp and golden.
- Top with wild rocket kissed with a bit of lemon juice and shavings of good aged parmesan. Serve right away.
Roasted tomato soup with pumpkin bread
Roasted tomato soup
- about 16 large ripe tomatoes
- 2 cans whole tomatoes
- 200 g (about 4 large) leeks
- 1 carrot, peeled
- 4 garlic cloves
- a handful thyme sprigs
- 30 ml olive oil
- 30 ml sugar
- 15 ml salt
- 15 ml red wine vinegar
- 250 ml cream
- 1 small butternut or pumpkin
- 4 cups stone ground white bread flour
- 10 ml salt
- 7,5 ml instant yeast
- 10 ml mixed spice
- 125 ml pumpkin seeds
- about 1/2 cup water
- Preheat oven to 180C. Chop the tomatoes in batches in your food processor.
- They don’t have to be very fine, just chopped. Add it to a large deep rectangular roasting pan or a wide deep dutch oven.
- Process the canned tomatoes to a pulp and add it to the pan. Pulse the leeks, carrot and cloves into pieces, then add it on top of the tomatoes.
- Place the thyme sprigs on top, then drizzle all over with olive oil and sprinkle with the sugar, salt and red wine vinegar.
- Without stirring too much (just flatten the surface) place into the oven and roast for 2 hours, stirring well every 30 minutes.
- The mixture should get toasty on the edges and reduce by about 25 %. When it is read, remove from the oven, then remove the stalks of the thyme.
- Use a ladle to transfer the mixture to a pot, then use a stick blender to blitz to a smooth pulp.
- Because your using the tomatoes skins and all, your soup with still be chunky – that’s the way I prefer it. Add the cream and mix well.
- Check the seasoning and add more sugar, salt and vinegar if needed. Cover and set aside until ready to serve.
- To serve, drizzle with more cream or olive oil and your choice of herbs or croutons.
- Peel the butternut and cut into chunks. Boil in water until tender, then process to a pulp.
- You’ll need about 2 cups processed pumpkin pulp for the bread. Set aside to cool slightly, but use it while still slightly warm.
- Place the flour, salt, yeast, spice and seeds in a large bowl. Mix well.
- Add the cooked pumpkin and water and stir until it starts to come together.
- Use your hands to shape it into a soft pliable dough, kneading it until it is smooth (about 5-10 minutes).
- Add a little more water or flour if necessary. Shape into a smooth ball, then place on a lined baking tray.
- Cut a cross shape on the top, then cover with a plastic bag to rise until doubled in size.
- When ready, bake at 220 C for about 45 minutes until golden brown and cooked. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack.
- Serve the slices toasted or untoasted with butter.
Onion soup & camembert bread
- 4 tbsp butter (from your pantry)
- 1 tbsp olive oil (from your pantry)
- 8 onions – peel & slice finely
- 2 tsp sugar (from your pantry)
- 4 cloves garlic – chop finely
- 2 tbsp flour
- 250ml white wine
- 4 tbsp beef stock granules
- 5 cups boiling water
- freshly ground salt & pepper (from your pantry)
- 2 wheels camembert cheese
- 2 loaves sourdough bread
- 8 cloves garlic – chop finely
- 10g rosemary – chop finely (keep 2 sprigs aside)
- 2/3 cup olive oil (from your pantry)
- freshly ground salt (from your pantry)
- Preheat the oven to 180◦C. Prepare all the ingredients as indicated above. Boil the kettle. In a large bowl or jug, mix the beef stock granules into the boiling water (see quantities above).
- To make the onion soup, melt the butter and oil in a large saucepan on medium to high heat. Add the onions and fry for 5 minutes until translucent, stirring frequently. Sprinkle in the sugar and fry for another 15 minutes until the onions are soft and nicely browned. Stir often to make sure they don’t burn. Now add the garlic and cook for a minute. Stir in the flour and cook for another minute. Then add the wine – let it bubble for about 30 seconds before adding the beef stock. When the soup is boiling gently, put the lid on the pot, turn the heat down to low and leave to simmer for 10 minutes (or until the bread is done). Check seasoning and add salt and pepper if necessary.
- To make the camembert bread, mix the garlic, rosemary and olive oil in a small bowl. Cut a circle in the middle of the top of the bread, using the packaged camembert cheese as a stencil. Remove enough bread from inside the circle to make a hole that will fit the camembert snugly. Now slice into the rest of the bread crossways and lengthways (like a checkerboard) – but don’t cut all the way to the bottom of the bread, leaving the bottom of the loaf intact.
- Turn the cheese on its side and cut the rind off the top (2 to 3 mm). Place the cheese (cut side up) into the hole you made in the bread and place a sprig or two of rosemary on top of the cheese.
- Place on a baking sheet and spoon the garlic and rosemary mixture between the checkerboard slices in the bread. Scatter the loaf with freshly ground salt. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve immediately.
- To serve, divide the soup between the bowls. Serve the bread on a platter. Tear off pieces of bread and dunk into the melted cheese.