Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Fountain of Youth Soup

I just discovered I am 5.8 years younger than I thought I was. I took the Real Age test and I feel more youthful already. If I actually rewound 5.8 years I would be living in Mexico City, taking vacations with Sam on weekends, and riding the posh bus with my American School Foundation students every weekday morning.

The Real Age test has motivated me to live healthier. Questions range from your dental habits, to how often you see your friends and family, to how many veggies you eat a day. Hence, we had Yellow Squash and Carrot Soup and Salad tonight.

I made this soup last summer when my family was vacationing in the OBX (that is how the cool people write it). We rented a beach house together: 13 adults and 12 kids. It was a blast, even with hurricane Ernesto's visit. Each family took a night cooking and for our night I made this soup. Those 12 kids gobbled it up. Who knew? At first the oldest grandchild, Dixon (10), was a little skeptical, but once he tried it he was hooked.

Soup is not something you normally think kids are going to be hip on. Or maybe it's the parents who don't want it spilled. Take a risk, see if your kids will eat these veggies. Maybe then they can take the Real Age test. I figure, if my kids took it they would be around -4 years old and -2 years old.

Yellow Squash Soup with Basil Cream

Adapted from Good Friends, Great Dinners

3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
4 cups sliced yellow squash (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 cup finely chopped carrots
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup fat free half and half
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Basil Cream (optional)

Heat the oil in a heavy, deep saucepan over low heat. Add the onion, cover and cook until the onion is limp but not brown, about 10 minutes. Add the yellow squash and carrots and stir to coat with the oil. Cover and cook undisturbed for 10 to 15 minutes or until soft.

Bring the chicken broth to a boil and add to the vegetables. Simmer, uncovered for 15 minutes more or until the vegetables are tender but retain some firmness. Remove to a food processor or blender and puree to a smooth consistency. Return the mixture to saucepan. Pour in the half and half and season with salt and pepper. If the soup is too sweet, add a little lemon juice to taste. Bring to a simmer over low heat before serving.

Ladle the hot soup into individual serving bowls. Add a teaspoon of Basil Cream.

Basil Cream

1/2 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup heavy cream

While the soup is heating, finely chop the basil in a food processor or blender. Add the heavy cream, a little at a time, until a thick sauce is formed.

We added croutons and crumbled bacon to ours tonight, but it's not necessary (and not as healthy). I also didn't have half and half so I used 3/4 cup skim milk and 1/4 cup whipping cream. It still tasted yummy.


Funnyman said...

Mmmmmm.... that's some tasty soup. Your picture turned out great. So impressed by this blog.

Amanda said...

So I guess my "real age" is 26.5. I'm getting so old! Funny how you're much younger than I am. I suppose I should start working out or something because up until they started asking those questions I was estimated at 21. At least I can say that some girl thought I was 14 at Gap (she was about 10 though). I guess I'm old inside.

Manda said...

Hey Girl. Great blog. I'll have to try out some of your dishes. I'm not much of a cook so I need every little bit of help I can get.

Carrie said...

That soup sounds so yummy! I love soup, and so does my hubby ...for an appetizer. He grumbles if it's for dinner as it doesn't fill him up! Have I ever shared my Mexican soup with you? It's so yummy. It's creamy, has chicken, corn, fresh cilantro...so great! If I haven't given it to you, I will.