Saturday, December 11, 2010

Grammie's Tomato and Rice Soup

Seeing as the holiday break is approaching when I'll be leaving our lovely Quinn Street Attic for a whole month or so, I've refrained from buying any more food so that it may not go to waste while I am gone. It's been a bit of a challenge to come up with sustainent meals with an almost empty fridge and cupboard. Fortunately for me, I rather enjoy a good challenge.

Although far from being gourmet, these meals are low budget, easy to make, and relatively fast, which is why I've decided to share them with the blogging community at large.

Current ingredients left in the kitchen:

a cup of rice
a carrot and 1/2
small white potatoes
a tomato
1/4 left of a jar of pasta sauce
pumpkin puree
all purpose flour
white bread flour
2 eggs
vanilla extract
tahini paste
plus condiments... lots of condiments...
Almost everything from honey dijon mustard and worcestershire sauce to sambal oelek and fish sauce.

Tonight I brought out an old nostalgic recipe that my French Canadian grandmother used to make for me as a child. It's far from being French or Canadian but it's a no nonsense meal that fills your tummy with warmth.

It's Grammie's Tomatoe and Rice Soup!

I toasted the rice with onion and two cloves of garlic in oil on medium heat in the cooking pot. I then added about a cup of water and slowly added some beef broth accordingly, reducing the heat so the soup could simmer. I used bovril, which is a liquid concentration that acts almost like a bouillon cube, that is to be added to boiled water. I accidentally spilled a huge amount everywhere and ended up with a very salty, almost soy sauce like broth. So I reduced the amount of broth from a cup and replaced it with boiling water. I basically used the broth as the seasoning. Unfortunately out of habit, I forgot to omit the table salt. I chopped the tomato and added it with the leftover pasta sauce to the pot. By this point the rice had begun to soften and was starting to absorb the liquid. I added in cayenne for an extra kick, a dash of dried basil, and a bit of generic hot curry powder. I continued to add boiling water to the pot as the rice kept absorbing the liquid.

Overall, a simple sucess!

I had some leftover stale seasoned croutons that I threw in there for texture and flavor. I believe my grandmother used to make hers with instant rice, water, salt and canned tomatoes to make this soup and she would serve it with saltines. Eating mine, however, still conjured up memories of watching Jeopardy or Wheel of Fortune doing a giant jigsaw puzzle, or playing yahtzee in her living room. The only thing that was missing to complete the nostalgic meal was oreos and milk or pecan icecream for dessert.

To be honest, I didn't think my photo of the soup I made would do it justice...
But here's a fancier type of tomato soup that I gave me the thought of making my humble Grammie's kind.

Pomidora Soup with Tortellini

And might I add, had I added sausage or tortellini, it would have made the soup exceptionally heart warming.

The pomidora soup with tortellini recipe is availabe here:
from a lovely Dutch woman living in Gouda.

Perhaps Sophia will turn to her in the future for nostalgic recipes...

What on earth will I end up making with the leftover ingredients in my kitchen, you say? And will I ever find a way to use up all that pumpkin puree?? Stay tuned and all shall be revealed.

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