Monday, August 1, 2011

The Soup Project: Dilled Fresh Tomato and Quinoa Soup

The thing about dill, if you get it at the market, is you always get so much what can you do with all of it? So I had this dill left over from the Dilly Green Beans that I simply had to make after we had them at the Humble Feast and when I was thinking about soup, tomatoes came to mind, but I couldn't recall seeing dill paired with tomatoes. I asked a few other market shoppers and they weren't sure either.

I checked online and found this recipe at All Recipes, so I knew the two could be successfully paired together.

Here are ten things you can do with dill:
  • Make dill butter for corn by blending a tablespoon or chopped into the butter
  • Add dill to vinaigrettes
  • Think dip, why not dill hummus or try this white bean dill dip
  • Stir chopped dill into roasted or mashed potatoes
  • Blend it into potato or macaroni salad
  • Dill-up some coleslaw
  • Try it in potato-leek soup
  • Make dill-garlic vinegar
  • Add it to mayonnaise and use as a dip for artichokes
  • Use it in fish and egg dishes

I love the lacy look and soft fronds of dill. It looks a bit like carrot tops and it's not surprising that dill is in the same family as carrots, parsnips and parsley. The flavor is strongly associated with pickles, a tart treat so popular in America, it has inspired blogs like this one.

No such thing with dill, at least not that I know about. But if there was a blog it would surely include a soup like the one I created.

The tomatoes were the priciest item I got them at the market last Thursday. Most tomatoes there were $5.25 a pound and of course I got the tomatoes from the "bargain" $4.00 row. There was also a bin of seconds for $3, but alas not enough good ones for soup. They should be slightly on the firm side.

I made the soup on Saturday, but yesterday when I was at the Hillsdale Portland farmers' market, I noticed all the tomatoes were priced significantly less than the ones at the market in Seattle. In fact, all the produce at the Hillsdale market was more affordable than Seattle. It's getting to be more like whole paycheck (if you have one) at the markets in Seattle, but that's another story. So if you grow your own or live away from Seattle tomatoes are possibly more affordable.

Back to the soup. . . .

Blanch the tomatoes before making the soup. Blanching is simply cooking briefly in a large pot of boiling water. I cut the core out and gently dropped them in the water. The skins (which can be distracting) peel off. Then I cut and roasted them with garlic cloves.

Dilled Fresh Tomato and Quinoa Soup
(Serves 4)

2 pounds tomatoes, rinsed, cores removed and blanched
1 head garlic, cloves separated, peeled and sliced
1/2 cup Rockridge Orchards apple cider vinegar
2 cups water
1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 1/2 cups diced celery
2 small to medium carrots, sliced
1 cup corn, fresh or frozen
1/2 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
1/4 cup minced fresh dill
1 cup coconut milk
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
A few dill sprigs for garnish

1. Blanch and peel the tomatoes.

2. Preheat oven to 300F. Slice the tomatoes and place on a baking sheet with garlic cloves. Drizzle with olive oil. Roast for an hour, stirring occasionally. While tomatoes and garlic roast, cook quinoa.

3. Add apple cider vinegar, water, quinoa, celery, carrots, corn, honey or agave nectar and dill. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat.

4. Combine roasted tomatoes and coconut milk in a blender. Stir into soup. Heat for a few more minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and garnish with a sprig of dill and a tender young stalk of celery and serve.

I was a little surprised my Cooking Assistant like the flavor, but then, he was up for the dilled green beans. Maybe it's because dill is related to carrots, one of his long time favorites.

It's good to know he takes pre-washing so seriously. Hope you enjoy this soup, it was made for summer.

For more soup suggestions, check this list of soups I've made already.


Torviewtoronto said...

this looks wonderful

Tanvi said...

Looks great! I adore dill! (and tomatoes and quinoa!)

Debra Daniels-Zeller said...

Thanks, it has an amazing addictive flavor, perfect for a summer meal.

Jay said...

hey to your space...its really a good one...
very interesting posts..
Am your happy follower now..:)
do stop by mine sometime..
Tasty Appetite

Debra Daniels-Zeller said...

Thanks so much Jay, I'm off to your site right now!

Divya said...

I love anything with dill in it - it's so refreshing! Will have to try this one out.

Linda said...

My mouth is watering just reading the recipe! I am a dill lover, and I am always so sorry to see it bolt due to way-too-early heat here in Oklahoma. I was surprised to see quinoa in the recipe, but why not! ;)

Design Elements said...

looks so delicios, Debra! love dill

p.s.: Happy about your comment. HAPPY WEEKEND!