Thursday, October 18, 2012

Spur of the Moment Vegetable Soup

Nothing says "comfort" like home made soup ~

Per Nana~

This was an amazing soup.
Dorie suggested many alternatives for this soup, the variety of 
vegetables are endless. I decided to use a combination of carrots,
 parsnips, and potatoes.  I had never cooked a parsnip until we started 
cooking with Dorie  and I really do like the flavor it gives to the dish.
After cooking the onions, celery and carrots, I added thyme and rosemary.
Once the potato and parsnips were softened,  I pureed the soup.
 The result was a perfectly smooth soup that was so tasty.
For Sunday night's supper, I served our family's famous fried provolone 
sandwiches along with a bowl of this delicious vegetable soup. 
 It worked perfectly together. Hubby said this was a keeper so I
 guess it passed the test.  Thank goodness.
Per Tricia~
Spur of the moment or not, this recipe was not happening.  
We had an eventful last week enjoying fall foliage in Vermont .......
while simultaneously  comforting our homesick son in Italy and 
ultimately coordinating his return to the US.  Let me tell you that
 I could have used some of Nana's soup and those provolone sandwiches
 - I can not even tell you how amazing those things are.  
I am going to make sure she adds directions on the blog 
next week because they are OFF THE CHARTS
But I will gladly share the photos of our adventure at the cheese farm.
Next week I will add photos of the cooking class we took and hopefully 
share a late entry to the "spur of the moment soup" category :)
The farm is "Consider Bardwell Farm" in West Pawlet, Vermont. 
 For the longest time I thought the name was some type of 
marketing gimmick  like "think of Bardwell Farm first" or such.
  But no, it was the actual name of the original owner.
 First name- Consider, last -Bardwell. 
Established in 1864.  They produce award winning cheeses from goat
 and cow's milk.  They host tours, farm dinners and special events throughout
 the year but they also have a self serve store open all the time.  Yup- help 
yourself and leave the cash or a personal check. I have not seen this 
anywhere other than Vermont, which is one of the reasons I love it.
Their website is fabulous so feel free to take a peek.

You can now even buy their cheese through their site- but it is interesting
 to see their list of wholesalers, retailers and exclusive restaurants that serve
 their cheese. The owner, Angela Miller, even authored a book "Hay Fever-
 How Chasing A Dream on A Vermont Farm Changed My Life". 
 I have a copy and have thoroughly enjoyed reading her adventures as 
a prominent literary agent in NY City who seeks balance by investing
 in the cheese farm and juggling both lives and lifestyles.  It is tough work.
After we visited with the goats and other animals we headed to
 the farm next door for pie. Again, a till for leaving cash and the
 honor system in play. My 18 year old started out as" humoring his
 mother" but ended up taking far too many i-phone to convince
 anyone he was not impressed.....
When we got home and Googled we found a wonderful video from non
 other than Gesine Bullock Prado where she visited Consider Bardwell
 Farm and then makes and incredible goat's milk cheesecake.  

Gesine visits Consider Bardwell (click to see video)

If you have not heard of this baker and cookbook author, Gesine is Sandra
 Bullock's sister and a lawyer by trade who gave up Hollywood for 
Vermont and baking.  She has several websites and I enjoy them all. 
The one below has numerous videos that are awesome.
In closing, both sons are now home and I am referring to them as the 
"Boomerang Boys".  While they ended up home for different 
reasons,  I secretly think we owe it all to Dorie and their missing the  
 French Friday adventures far too much.......


  1. This was a great soup and I love how versatile it is in terms of using what vegetables you have on hand! Happy weekend ladies!

  2. Nana - those sandwiches sound wonderful.
    Tricia - hang in there :-) It sounds like you had a wonderful week in Vermont - I am going to have to check out that cheese farm.

  3. Nana: I find it really interesting that either people are finding this soup wonderful or blah... I with you I thought it was terrific.
    Tricia: The cheese sounds amazing.

  4. Nana: I find it really interesting that people either find this soup wonderful or blah. Not much in between. I loved it too... great flavors and plenty of room for creativity.

  5. Oh dear Tricia, sounds like quite a week. But happy to hear that you have your taste testers home safe and sound. And Gesine used to have a bakery in Montpelier, my family was so sad when she closed it. Her cakes are delicious!

    And Nana, your soup looks delicious, but grilled cheese is one of my very favorite comfort foods so I do hope that you share your recipe with us.

  6. I agree with Tricia! Provide that recipe - Nana, your sandwiches sound fantastic.
    Tricia, your photos are so lovely, I'm so happy your boys are home and enjoying being with you.
    Enjoy your weekend!!

  7. Great idea using parsnips! Your soup looks delicious.

  8. Thanks for sharing pictures of your adventure to the cheese farm. The soup looks delicious.

  9. Oh, I want to go there -- how wonderful! Thanks for sharing.

  10. Nana: your soup ceratinly looks absolutely delicious and the "fried provolone sandwiches" sound intriguing as well - I went the "chunky route" for this soup and I am sure that both versions taste wonderful!

    Tricia: great photos you must have had such a terrific time in Vermont!

    Have a great weekend!

  11. Nana: Great looking soup. I love parsnips too. And your cheese sandwiches sound awesome.
    Tricia: Thanks for sharing your Vermont adventure. I am so into cheese. I have to figure out where I can buy Consider Bardwell. I had one of their cheeses in a restaurant once, but haven't seen it for sale. I recently heard an interview with the cheesemaker on the radio (not the owner, but someone else). Sounds like a cool place.

  12. Nana, your soup looks lovely and fried provolone sandwiches sound intriguing...
    Tricia, thanks for sharing about the farms! I will have to look for Angela's Miller's book. I board a couple of goats on my friends farm and want to get more into cheese making myself.

  13. Nana, thanks for sharing through the comments section in other blogs how you make your provolone sandwiches. I couldn't imagine a better side for this soup.

    Tricia, your Vermont adventures look fantastic; that farm is beautiful. I'm happy you got to take home such great products.

  14. that pig is hilarious! :) your soup looks really golden and fun! :)