Thursday, October 27, 2016

How to Make Vampire Repellent -- Otherwise known as Roasted Garlic Soup

Hello Everyone!
Halloween is approaching and one has to start thinking about preparing for the dead or undead that come to earth on Halloween night to prey upon unsuspecting mortals.

I don't know what film this is from, but I want to be this bat girl some Halloween.  (If I ever get brave enough to wear something that clingy.)

To help in this endeavor, I have the perfect recipe to put into your vampire survival kit.

Supposedly, this is a 19th century vampire kit.  I think that I am going to stick with the soup.

Roasted Garlic Soup

This recipe is delicious and is one of my husband's favorites.  I know that it sounds frightening- eating a soup whose main ingredient is garlic, but roasting the garlic really mellows the garlic flavor.  This recipe is different from the recipes that I usually post because it makes ALOT.  We usually get three meals out of it.  The good news is, this soup freezes and reheats really well, so it is a very good soup to make ahead of time, freeze in individual portions, and then have for lunch during the week.  Or to save for those times when you are sick and just want a good soup to heat up in the microwave.
This soup does have a few more steps than some of your other soups, but it is well worth the extra steps.  Sorry that I don't have pictures - I forgot to be a camera man while I was cooking.

4 whole heads of garlic
3 tbsp. olive oil, (I have a Tuscan Herb Olive Oil that I love to use for this recipe, but regular is fine too.)
6 tbsp. butter (Use real butter, margarine will not taste right.)
1 cup onions, chopped  (You can actually do 2 medium onions if you REALLY like onion, but this is not for the timid.)
Creole seasoning (1 tsp or to taste)
Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
2 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme (2 tsp. if you are using dried thyme)
1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-2 tsp. dried dill, separated  (I really like dill, so I use 2 tsp. but 1 tsp still tastes delicious.)
8 cups homemade chicken broth,  (if you don't have homemade, use a low-sodium chicken broth)
1 cup heavy cream, warmed

1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a small baking sheet with foil.  (This makes for easier cleanup, the recipe will work just as well if you use a non-stick baking pan with no foil.)
2.  Cut 1/4 inch off the top of each garlic head.  (You want to cut it so that each clove of garlic has been cut at the very top.)  Place the garlic with the cut side up on the baking sheet.  Drizzle the olive on top of each garlic head.
3.  Put in the oven and roast until softened, about 45 minutes. 
4.  Remove from oven and let the garlic cool.  You want the garlic to be cool enough for you to handle.  (This usually takes about 15 minutes.  While you are waiting for the garlic to cool, you can be prepping your onions.)  Once the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze the soft, roasted, pulp into a small bowl and put aside for later.  (There is no trick to this. Simply grab the garlic head at the bottom and squeeze.  The roasted garlic will come out looking like a paste.)
5. Over medium-high heat, melt butter in large, heavy bottomed pot  (I prefer a ceramic coated cast iron dutch oven.) Add the onions, 1 tsp. each Creole seasoning, freshly ground black pepper and dill (Use only 1/2 tsp. of dill if you are using a total of 1 tsp. dill.) and saute until the onions have softened - about four minutes.
6.  Stir in thyme and reserved roasted garlic.
7.  Sprinkle in the flour, stirring while you sprinkle.  Cook for about one minute.  Stir constantly to incorporate the flour and make certain the flour doesn't scorch.
8.  Slowly pour in broth, stirring constantly while pouring.
9.  Increase heat to high and bring to a boil.  Boil rapidly, stirring frequently, until soup has thickened slightly - about ten (10) minutes.
10.  Take off the heat and let cool slightly.  (This step is very important.  DO NOT SKIP IT!)
11.  Working in batches, which I am forced to do because I use a Magic Bullet single serving blender, but which you should do even if using a large blender that all the soup will fit in to, puree soup.  You want to puree until the soup looks creamy and slightly frothy.
12.  Pour your pureed batches into a large bowl or pot.  
13.  Once all the soup has been pureed, return the soup to the large pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
14.  Add cream, season with creole seasoning, pepper and remaining teaspoon dill (half tsp. dill if only using one teaspoon dill in total).  Stir until mixed into the soup.

Serve and enjoy!  

 NOTE:  You can garnish this soup with many things as the mild garlic flavor blends well with several ingredients.
Some of our favorite garnishes are:
grated cheddar cheese
bacon bits
A dash of hot pepper sauce

If you want to save in individual servings and freeze, make sure to cool the soup before you put them into containers and into the freezer.  This will help ice crystals from forming and will keep your soup creamy when you reheat it.

You can also serve it in pumpkin bowls like in this picture:

I have never tried this, so I don't know if the pumpkin bowl effects the taste of the soup but the presentation is AWESOME!!!  I like to give credit where credit is deserved, so here is a link to the recipe that goes with this picture:

I have not made this, but it sounds like it might be delicious.  And it would be sure to impress at dinner parties.  I think any item that you call a bisque ups the elegance factor.

In the next few posts I am going to give some decorating ideas to those people who waited 'til the last minute to decorate for Halloween and have realized that all of the stores are done with Halloween and have moved on to Christmas.  Don't worry, I have some ideas for you that don't involve Halloween specific items that you can turn into something spooky with just some paper and glue.  I will also be posting some ideas for last minute costumes and putting together some lists for some Halloween binge watching.

I am also in the process of making a Halloween playlist.  Do you have any songs that you like to play during Halloween?  If you do, let me know and they may make my Halloween playlist!

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