Onion Soup

Love the fall air. Our temperatures have slightly dropped.  The sun is not as intense.  The morning are cooler as well as our evenings. Soup portrays fall in our house and we try to have as often as we can.

We try to keep our Sundays as relaxed as possible, just a nice ending from a crazy week, and a perfect beginning to a new week. This gives me the opportunity to spend more time in the kitchen preparing our Sunday night family dinner. Last night I prepared onion soup, but not your typical onion soup. I decided to use red onions and add red wine. Truth to be known, I had little white wine left as well as red wine, so why not add the two together and see what happens. The result was a very rich and tasty soup.

I also did something different: I used a hand help blender to mince down the onions. I love cheese and decided at the last minute to add more cheese over it after been under the broiler, and add another slice of bread with more cheese over it… What can I say … I am French and I love cheese.

Enjoy a great week!



Tonight’s September 30, 2012 dinner:

Onion Soup

Vanilla Ice Cream with cookie




2 medium sweet red onions, thinly sliced

1 shallot thinly sliced

1 tablespoon flour

1 cup of wine . Red – White or both

4 cups of homemade stock, or low salt canned beef broth

3 tablespoons of unsalted butter

Salt and pepper

Rounds of thin baguette

1 cup grated Gruyere or Emmenthal cheese

Preheat the oven to 400º. Spread the rounds of baguette on a cookie sheet and bake until golden brown. Set aside.

Heat the butter in a large saucepan until melted. Add the onions and cook over medium heat and constantly stir. When the onions are golden add the flour. Mix well and lower the heat. Make sure the onions are not turning too brown.

Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes over medium heat. Add the beef stock and stir until it boils rapidly. Taste to season. Let it boil for another 8 to 10 minutes.

In a soup terrine drop the bread and sprinkle with the cheese on top. Ladle the soup over it. Cover with another baguette round topped with more cheese.

Put the soup terrine under the broil until the cheese melts.

If you do not want to keep the onion in the soup, strain them or with an hand held blender break them down.


Roasted Vegetables Chowder

After a great day of fun activities with my son, dinner came too fast once again.  Refrigerator door open pondering how I was going to use the left overs from the night before. Soup was the only meal that sounded good. All the ingredients lined up on my prep table, cutting board ready as well as my large Le Creuset pot on the stove.

I really enjoy preparing soups with roasted vegetables, but never before I used roasted bell peppers and corn together, therefore I was a bit nervous of the end result.  The voices in my house spoke: “We Love It”. 

I have to admit I really enjoy creating in the kitchen.  The soup last night was, I have to say, quite delicious. As you can see it was quite easy to prepare, and any vegetables will do. Just let your imagination take over and have fun with it.

I liked to sprinkle some lime juice over it, it intensified the flavor of the corn and the bell peppers. Maybe add some jalapeno to give it s Southwest kick.

Bon Appetit!!

Tonight’s June 18, 2012 dinner:

Roasted Corn, Bell Peppers and Vegetables Chowder







Roasted bell peppers

Roasted carrots

Roasted corn in the cob

Zucchinis, sliced

1 ½ cup frozen white corn kernels

1 cup Chicken or beef, already cooked and cut up in pieces

1 vegetables bouillon cube

Salt and pepper

Sour cream

Cut up pieces of red and yellow bell peppers

Lime juice



Scrape the corn from roasted the cob and set aside. Cut the cob core in half and place inside a large pan.

Add the roasted bell peppers, carrots, zucchinis, frozen white corn, scraped roasted corn, chicken or meat, vegetables bouillon cube to the pan. Add water to about two inches over the vegetables.

Cook for about 30 minutes.

Remove the corn cob core and scrape any juices or corn remaining to it.

Place all the vegetables in the blender and liquefy. Return to pan and if to thick add some water to dilute.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream and chopped bell peppers. Add a sprinkle of lime juice over the soup.


Food and Romance from Around the World: Bolzano, Italy

I always been in love with this wonderful town in the most northern part of Italy, Bolzano, located  in the Alto Adige region. The city is located and surrounded by the Dolomites Mountains. The panoramic views are just breathtaking.  Growing up, we were very fortunate to have an aunt that lived there. Her apartment was facing Piazza Della Vittoria and from almost every rooms we had a beautiful view of the mountains. 

Historically the town dated back before the Middle Ages. Became part of Bavaria and was united to Austria in 1809. It belonged to the Austrian Empire until Italy acquired it at the end of World War I in 1918. With World War II Bolzano was heavily bombarded.  After the war the city was restored to his influential Austrian structure.

Bolzano or Bozen  to this day is still a dual speaking town, Italian and German. 

The city is divided by the Talvera river. The low bridge that divides the Old City Center, to the New City Center, has this beautiful cast iron railing on each side of the road. Once crossed towards the older part of the city, cars are sent to the surrounding streets leaving the city center free of any noise, cars.  Pedestrians owns the streets, shops owns the “portici”. Fabulous shopping.

The Dolomites Mountains are so accessible and enjoyable during the winter with all sorts of winter sports, as well as during the warm months of summer.  We used to take a short car ride to the gondolas and 15 minutes later we were at the top of this stunning mountain looking down at the town. The air was just clean, the rolling hills too inviting for us children’s to stay away from them.

We always enjoyed the beautiful promenades and after what seamed hours we would stop at this wonderful barn like restaurant and enjoy this wonderful dish of “Speck”, Tyrolean salt cured ham, fresh bread, strudel and a chilled glass of white wine for the adults, and warm apple cider for us children’s. Desserts were sinful. A simple apple strudel, fresh whipped cream cups, or a very delightful chocolate cake, desert is just part of the day.

We also enjoyed goulash, canederli, sausages and pasta with beans.

My favorite as well as my mom are the canederli which I will be sharing with you.


½ pound day old white bread
1 tablespoon butter
2 ounces of Speak ham, diced
1 cup of whole milk
2 eggs
Parsley, chopped
1 small onion, peeled, and chopped small pieces
Salt and pepper

Chicken broth

Cut the bread in small cubes and place in a bowl. In a small frying pan sauté the onion with the butter. When done place with the bread. In a small bowl mix the eggs with the milk, add the parsley, salt and pepper.  Mix well. Add the mixture to the bread onion mix. Add the speak.
Let it rest for 30 minutes. Form small balls in the cavity of your hand and roll it lightly in the flour to barely cover.
In a large pot warm the chicken broth and boil the canederli for at least 20 minutes

October 24, 2011

It was overcast today, and what a perfect occasion to make soup. This is my first experiment cooking with Kale and the result was quite a light yet filling soup.

Definitely will make it again. Along side served toasted French bread.

Bon Appetit!

Tonight’s October 24, 2011 dinner:

Kale and Potatoes Soup

Toasted Bread

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie with Peaches


1 large bunch kale, stem removed and chopped

2 large potatoes, peeled and diced

1 zucchini cut in rounds

2 small parsnips, peeled and diced

4 garlic cloves, peeled

1 large chicken breast


Sour cream

In a large pot place all the above ingredients and cover with water. Cook over medium heat until the potatoes are tender and the kale is soft, 30 to 45 minutes. When done remove from heat and with a hand-held mixer, or food processor, puree. Serve in bowls with a dollop of sour cream.

October 26, 2010

October 26, 2010
I love Fall. Nothing says Fall like a good soup. This recipe is my staple, the run to soup, our family’s favorite. I always pass all the vegetables thru the food processor so our son will not see all the vegetables that he is eating. I am sure he will draw the line at the leeks.
Tonight I used some back bones from a couples of chickens that I did not use a couple of weeks ago and placed them in the freezer mixed with two great fresh chicken breasts.
A nice glass of wine and dinner was perfect.

Tonight’s October 26, 2010 dinner:
Vegetable Chicken Soup with Pasta

2 carrots peeled and cut in small pieces
1 leek, cleaned, outer leaves removed and the white part sliced thinly
3 celery ribs, cleaned and sliced
2 zucchinis sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled
2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts, cut in small cubes
Chicken backs, necks and wings

Small soup pasta of choice.

Place over medium heat a stock pot with water and add all the above ingredients ( not the pasta). Add more water to cover and cook at medium low, with the lid half covering the pot for 45 minutes.

When all the vegetables are tender, and the chicken fully cooked, remove from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes. In a food processor place all the vegetables and puree it all. Clean the chicken from the bones and puree as well.
Return it to the stock pot and keep warm. If it is too thick, more water can be added.

At this point I cooked small rings egg pasta. When done I drain and place some of the pasta in a soup bowl and add the soup over it.

August 18, 2010

August 18, 2010
Tonight is experiment night. I had some sea bass and wanted something different. The recipe below is an adaptation from a recipe from Giada De Laurentiis. Different yet quite tasty. A meal on its own.

Tonight’s August 18, 2010 dinner:
Roasted Sea Bass with Lemon Soup and Pea Puree

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, diced
2 lemons, one lemon zest and both juiced
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
¼ cup of white wine
2 cups frozen peas, thawed
¼ cup parsley, chopped
1 garlic clove
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup Parmesan cheese
4 sea bass fillets
Fresh ground pepper and salt

Preheat the oven to 375ᵒ.
To make the soup, warm the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and sauté until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the lemon zest and juice, wine and broth and bring to a simmer, cover, and keep warm over low heat.
To make the puree, combine the peas, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor and puree. With the machine running, add the extra virgin olive in a steady drizzle. Transfer the pea puree to a small bowl and stir in the Parmesan. Set aside.
Meanwhile, place the fish on a parchment lined roasting dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake to 10 to 12 minutes, depending of the thickness of the fillets.
Stir the lemon soup and divide among 4 bowls. Place a large spoonful of pea puree in the center of each bowl. Place the Sea Bass atop the mound of puree and serve right the way. Drizzle a bit more soup over the fish.

August 15, 2010

August 15, 2010

Tonight we are having soup. Yes with this heat,  I am making my favorite vegetable soup.  There is nothing to it, but for our little guy who just had his expander put in his mouth and has not been eating at all , it is wonderful seeing him eat again with gusto.  Vegetables and chicken with pasta, that is all.

Tonight’s August 15, 2010 dinner:
Giangi’s Vegetables Chicken Soup

2 carrots peeled and cut in small pieces
1 leek, cleaned, outer leaves removed and the white part sliced thinly
3 celery ribs, cleaned and sliced
2 zucchini sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled
Olive oil
2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts cut in small cubes
2 boneless and skinless chicken tights cut in small cubes
Crème Fraiche (optional)

Soup pasta of choice

Place over medium heat a stock pot with the olive oil and when warm add the leeks and cook for 5 minutes, constantly turning. Add the celery and the carrots. Sweat for 2 more minutes and add the remainder of the ingredients. Add water to cover and cook at medium low, with the lid half covering the pot for 45 minutes. Add water if needed.
When all the vegetables are tender, and the chicken fully cooked, remove from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes. In a food processor place all the vegetables and the chicken, or do it in batches, and puree it all.
Return it to the stock pot and keep warm. If it is too thick, more water can be added.
At this point I like to cook in a separate pan some little star pasta, or shells as I would do any other pasta. When done I drain and place some of the pasta in a soup bowl and add the soup over it. Place a dollop of crème Fraiche in the middle if you wish.