Monday, December 27, 2010

The Comfort of Soup

Xam, the Bread Dog, decided that Christmas wrapping tissue is actually meant to be dog toys...and he did enjoy shredding this ball of red tissue on Christmas Day.

It's been a wonderful week! Lots of quality time with our daughter, visiting from the land of drizzle for the holidays, fun with many relatives and some friends, walks along the beach and in the redwoods and at the Laguna, a mellow day for Christmas day with rain outside all day but a lit tree and gifts and good food and laughter inside. Hope that your holidays were magical!

Now things are quieter and something simple like a good comforting soup can fill the body with warmth and even some healthy ingredients...often a missing element in the delicious but rich spreads of the holidays. The great thing about soup is that besides being easy it can use up leftovers from the feasts.

Try this one which has leeks, corn, red pepper, sliced mushrooms , red potatoes and some cooked salmon (can you guess what we had for dinner one day this week?) I used canned chicken broth but if you have home made, by all means use that. I wouldn't use turkey broth because it is too strongly flavored so you will miss what the salmon contributes to the taste. Don't forget the lemon juice to sparks the salmon flavor perfectly. If you don't have any cooked salmon, canned salmon would work, just see if you can get good sized chunks from the can and leave the bones and mushy bits for some other dish.

Salmon Corn Soup
Serves 4

1 leek, split and washed well to remove grit
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup red pepper in a small dice
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup chopped carrots
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (or more, to taste)
about 20 oz chicken or vegetable broth (1 1/2 cans)
2 cups red potatoes, scrubbed, cut in 1 inch dice and boiled just to tender, then drained
1 cup fresh, frozen or canned corn kernels
1/2 cup - 1 cup flaked cooked salmon
2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
lemon juice to taste

Cut the leek into four lengthwise and slice into thin slices, using all of the white and some of the green parts...all of which you have washed well first. Discard the thicker outer leaves.

Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute' the leeks until translucent, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the red pepper, mushrooms, and carrots, stir to coat with oil, and continue to cook another two minutes.

Add the thyme, salt, pepper, broth, cooked & drained potatoes and corn to the pot. Cover and heat over medium heat until heated through. Add the salmon and parsley and continue heating for a minute. Taste, add lemon juice to taste and adjust salt and pepper.

Continue to heat until hot enough to serve. Ladle into bowls and serve very hot.


  1. This looks like a perfect way to work more fish into my diet, and a wonderful antidote to Christmas cookie overdosing.

    I'm glad you had such a wonderful Christmas! We did, too.

  2. Soup is such a comfort food. And yours looks and sounds great. I make chicken broth and keep it in the freezer for occasions like this. It is the starter for your soup. I prefer scratch cooking. Also as stated definitely an anecdote for my cookie binging.

  3. Love it. Happy new year to you, and a great 2011 to all!