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    THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

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Archive for Soups

RECIPE: Mango Gazpacho With Fromage Blanc Sorbet

Our bad: We forgot to publish this delicious mango gazpacho recipe in the height of summer gazpacho season.

But it’s still warm out; and this recipe from Vermont Creamery, served with fromage blanc sorbet, is worth your attention.

MANGO GAZPACHO RECIPE

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 cup tomato juice
  • 8 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • 1 large mango,* peeled, seeded, and diced
  • ¼ cup red onion, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and minced
  • 4 scallions, chopped fine
  • 1 orange, juiced (set zest aside for the sorbet)
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  •  

    Mmm, mmm, mango gazpacho. Photo courtesy Vermont Creamery.

     

    *Add 2 teaspoons sugar if the mango and tomato are not quite ripe.
     
    Ingredients For Sorbet

  • 8 ounces fromage blanc
  • 1/8 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  •  
    Preparation

    1. GAZPACHO: Place all ingredients except the orange zest in a large bowl or container overnight. Adjust seasonings in the morning. If the mixture is too chunky, pulse half of it with an immersion blender or a hand mixer.

    2. SORBET: Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and put in freezer 2 hours before serving. Use a small melon baller or sorbet scoop. Place sorbet on top of gazpacho.

     
    Find more of our favorite soup recipes.

      

    Comments

    COOKING VIDEO: Japanese Miso Soup For American Breakfast

     

    Asians drink soup for breakfast (Japanese miso soup and Thai pho, for example). Americans looking for something quick, hot, nutritious and comforting should consider the option.

    All you need to make a bowl of miso soup is hot water and a spoonful of miso paste, available in many supermarkets as well as in Asian food stores.

    You can add nutritious vegetables to your miso soup, as shown in the video, or have it plain, as it’s served at Japanese restaurants. The soup can be made in advance and microwaved in a minute, which is especially convenient if you want your soup with veggies.

    Beyond a quick cup of soup before you dash out, you can carry a thermos, thermal mug or a portable coffee mug full of soup as you leave. Your soup supply can also be part of a low-calorie, healthful lunch, snack or dinner.

    Here are more ways to use the miso paste.

       

       

    Find more of our favorite soups in our Soup Section.

    Want a more conventional breakfast? Check out our Cereals, Pancakes & Waffles Section.

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Whip Up A Simple Gazpacho Recipe

    A classic gazpacho. Photo courtesy
    AdSomeLife.com.

     

    Before summer ends, make gazpacho: high in taste and vegetable quota, low in calories. Get the ripest tomatoes, crisp cucumbers and other favorite vegetables such as green onions and red peppers; toss them into the blender or food processor with fresh herbs and vinegar to taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. You can even leave out the olive oil.

    The recipe doesn’t matter: In Spain, home of gazpacho, there are as many recipe variations of the chilled soup as you can count.

    Don’t like tomatoes or bell peppers? Make white gazpacho. Here’s a recipe from chef John Fraser at Dovetail, a top New York City restaurant, that doesn’t rely on summer produce and can be made year-round. It’s not the lowest calorie gazpacho, but you can substitute fat-free yogurt Greek yogurt.

    WHITE GAZPACHO FROM DOVETAIL

    Ingredients

  • ¼ cup whites of leeks, sliced thin and washed
  • 3 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed
  • 10 green grapes, washed
  • ¼ cup blanched almond slivers
  • 1½ tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 2 cups cucumbers
  • ½ cup English cucumbers, peeled and juiced
  • ½ tablespoon sour cream
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 tablespoon salt, plus more as needed
  • Garnish: fresh dill, slivered almonds, julienned leek tops and/or droplets of a dark green oil (certain olive oils, avocado oil or homemade parsley oil (blend fresh dill or parsley with a bit of olive oil)
  • Preparation

    1. Sauté leeks in a medium-size pan over medium-low heat until translucent and tender. Chill in the fridge.

    2. Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender; purée until smooth.

    3. Season with salt to taste.

    4. Pass through a fine mesh sieve or chinois. Plate, garnish and serve cold.

    Yield: 6 portions.

    WAYS TO DRESS UP YOUR GAZPACHO

  • COCKTAIL: Serve in a cocktail glass with a stick of celery, like a Bloody Mary.
  • VODKA: Add a tablespoon of vodka (or gin or Tequila) for Bloody Mary gazpacho.
  • SEAFOOD: Add cooked shrimp, a large sea scallop/several bay scallops or some crabmeat to make for a seafood soup.
  • PASTA SALAD:Toss over cold pasta.
  • COCKTAIL SHOT: Turn extra gazpacho into a full-blown cocktail shot, called a gazpachito (recipe).
  •  
    SPECIALTY GAZPACHO RECIPES

  • Avocado gazpacho recipe.
  • Melon gazpacho recipe.
  •  
    GAZPACHO ADDS TO YOUR VEGGIE COUNT

    Even a small amount of soup can add another portion of veggies to your daily intake.

    How many fruit and vegetable servings do you need each day? The government’s prior “five a day” recommendation has been modified based on age, gender and physical activity.

    Use this fruit and vegetable calculator from the Centers For Disease Control to calculate your personal requirements.
     
    Find more of our favorite soup recipes.
     
      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Thickeners For Soups, Stews & Sauces

    Today is National Homemade Soup Day.

    Homemade soup is not only superior to prepared varieties; it enables you to add the freshest flavor with herbs and to minimize the often enormous sodium content of processed soups.

    If you want a thicker soup, there are different ways to thicken (that also are used for sauces and stews).

    In today’s tip, chef Johnny Gnall shares what every culinary student is taught—how to thicken with:

  • Roux
  • Slurry
  • Ragu
  • Bread
  • Rice and more
  •  
    Head to the article.

     

    Tomato soup thickened with a slurry. Photo courtesy Bull and Bear restaurant | Chicago.

     

    Check out the many different types of soups in our Soup Glossary.

    Discover some new garnishes for 20 popular soups.

      

    Comments

    COOKING VIDEO: Alton Brown’s Christmas Soup

     

    What does Alton Brown eat for Christmas?

    A hearty, peppery soup that’s been a family favorite for generations.

    Tangy with red wine vinegar and nicely peppery, the hearty winter soup is packed with kale, kidney beans, kielbasa and potatoes.

    Whether or not you serve it on Christmas, this soup can be enjoyed all winter.

  • Check out the video below.
  • Find your favorite soups in our Soup Glossary.
  • The best garnishes for 20 popular soups.
  •    

       

    Comments

    TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Vietnamese Pho Soup From Pacific Organic

    Instead of hours of cooking, enjoy a bowl
    of steaming Vietnamese phö soup in
    minutes. Photo by Simon Gurney |
    Dreamstime.

     

    Last week we presented a video on how to prepare Vietnamese phö, one of the world’s greatest foods.

    Instead of making stock for hours, though, you can enjoy the 10-minute version with Pacific Organic Soup Starters. Not bad, given that a bowl of phö can have up to 30 ingredients (including all the seasonings in the broth).

    It’s the best commercial phö we’ve had, and an easy way for you to treat yourself (and your family) to something special.

    Phö, pronounced fuh, is also high in protein and low in calories when you enjoy the delicious broth without the traditional rice noodles.

    While Vietnamese pho is a beef-based stock, Pacific Organic makes chicken and vegetarian soup bases as well as beef.
    You can find them at natural food stores nationwide and online.

  • Read the full review.
  • Find more of our favorite soups, plus recipes, in our Soup & Broth Section.
  •  

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Serve Pumpkin Soup In A Pumpkin Tureen

    You can buy a ceramic pumpkin tureen for the holiday season.

    Or, you can make one out of a real pumpkin, and have pumpkin soup to boot.

  • Select a handsome pumpkin of a size that suits your needs. Wash the pumpkin.
  • With a sharp knife, cut the “lid” off of the pumpkin.
  • Scoop the flesh out with an ice cream scoop. Scoop the flesh from the lid as well.
  • Toss the membrane; save the seeds to toast as a soup garnish.
  • Make soup from the flesh (recipes below).
  •  
    If you’re making the soup in advance, you can keep the tureen in the fridge or a cool spot. We’d love to save and re-use the tureen, but we’ve never had enough freezer space to see how it freezes. If you do, wash the pumpkin tureen after you’ve served the soup, let it dry, freeze it and please let us know how it goes!

     

    Serve soup from a real pumpkin tureen. Photo by G.M. Vozd | IST.

     

    Decorate Your Tureen
    The most breathtaking pumpkin tureen we’ve seen is on the website Phoo-d. The rim is circled with fresh flowers. If you have the time and energy—or simply want to see a beautiful photo—take a look.

    Pumpkin Soup Recipes

  • Recipe #1: Pumpkin soup with chicken stock and milk
  • Recipe #2: Pumpkin soup with chicken stock, half-and-half and cocoa croutons
  • Recipe #3: Pumpkin soup with anise and Pernod-flavored cream cheese “sorbet”
  •   

    Comments

    COOKING VIDEO: Spicy Vietnamese Soup

     

    Next week’s Top Pick focuses on a ready-made base for for phö—one of the world’s great soups.

    But if you’ve got time on your hands this weekend, you may want to make some from scratch.

    This recipe starts with beef shanks, oxtail, onions, ginger and star anise in a stock pot. Sliced beef and optional tripe make it meaty.

    While Chef John Mitzewich of FoodWishes.com spends time bemoaning the fact that he didn’t buy oxtail for his soup, he gives you the “correct” recipe.

    And with all due respect, you can ignore Chef John’s comment that phö is supposed to be a “painfully hot dish.” As with many recipes that come from the Pacific Rim, you should adjust the level of heat for your American palate.

       

       

    Find more of our favorite soup recipes in our Soups & Stocks Section.

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: How To Finish Soup In Blender

    The correct technique for blending hot soup.
    Photo courtesy Cuisinart.

     

    Yesterday we discussed how easy it is to blend soups and sauces with a hand-held immersion blender.

    Today, we share a tip for using a conventional upright blender. This tip should be part of every recipe that tells you to blend hot soup, but it isn’t.

    That’s why some of us have ended up blowing the top off the blender and spattering soup on the ceiling. Perhaps it’s a rite of passage when first learning to make soup—but it doesn’t have to be.

    When a hot liquid is put into a sealed container like the blender carafe, steam builds up inside. Turn on the motor to agitate the liquid and there’s no place for the steam to go—except out through the top.

    That’s one reason why blenders have a removable plug in the lid—the focus of today’s tip.

     

    Accident-Free Puree Soup

    1. Pour soup into the blender carafe.
    2. Remove the plug in the center of the lid and cover the opening with a folded kitchen towel.
    3. Keep one hand on the towel-covered lid; operate the blender with the other.

    Yes, you’ll need to wash the soup-spattered towel, but that’s a lot easier than hauling out the ladder to clean the kitchen ceiling!

    Now that you know the trick, make some soup! Check out our Soups & Stocks Section for some new recipes.

    HOW ABOUT AN ALL-IN-ONE SOUP COOKER & BLENDER?

    So many people use a blender when making soup that Cuisinart created the Blend and Cook Soup Maker.

    This unique blender has a patented cooking technology that lets you cook the soup in the blender from scratch—from sautéing chopped vegetables; to boiling, simmering and blending; to keeping the soup hot until ready to serve.

    The Cuisinart Blend and Cook Soup Maker performs all standard blender functions as well. Here’s more information.

      

    Comments

    PRODUCT: Bertolli Premium Meal Soups For Two

    Beefy goodness: our favorite from the new
    Bertolli Premium Meal Soups. Photo courtesy
    Bertolli.

     

    Have you seen the “soup opera” chefs in TV commercials, extolling the virtues of Bertolli Premium Hearty Soups?

    The soups look just as good in person as they do on TV, and live up to the advertising claims that they’re chock full of fresh-tasting ingredients.

    Indeed, the large chunks of mushrooms and zucchini we bit into tasted just-cooked and were full of flavor. All frozen foods included in the soups are flash-frozen to “maintain peak freshness.” As Bertolli has proved, when the ingredients going into the flash freezer taste great, they taste just as good when cooked.

    Cooking is simple: Add the contents of the bag into a cup of boiling water and simmer. Five minutes later, you’ve got a pot of hearty soup.

    We recently went to a tasting of the new line of soups, introduced by one of our favorite Top Chef contestants, Fabio Viviani. Having added professional spokesperson to his résumé, Fabio said that he’s now on the road 300 days a year.

     

    Yet despite the unenviable travel schedule, Fabio was as energetic and charming as he was on Top Chef (or even more so, since he wasn’t battling other cheftestants and facing panels of judges).

    Here’s the soup menu (garnish with fresh herbs and/or a spoonful of grated Parmesan cheese):

  • Chicken Minestrone: Roasted white meat chicken, beans, zucchini, yellow squash, carrots, tomatoes and pasta in a hearty vegetable broth.
  • Roasted Chicken & Rotini Pasta: Roasted white meat chicken, pasta, zucchini, yellow squash, carrots and celery in a chicken broth.
  • Tomato Florentine & Tortellini with Chicken: Cheese tortellini, large chunks of white meat chicken, spinach and tomatoes in a rich tomato bisque with a hint of basil (basil freak that we are, we topped it with a chiffonade of fresh basil).
  • Tuscan-Style Beef with Vegetables: Large chunks of beef, mushrooms, yellow squash, zucchini, carrots and celery with bowtie pasta in a beefy broth.
  •  
    We happily consumed them all. The two we’ll buy again are the velvety Tomato Florentine & Tortellini with Chicken and the hearty Tuscan-Style Beef & Vegetables.

    Why not the chicken soups? We make a large pot of chicken soup every other Sunday and prefer our own. But those who buy chicken noodle soup now have a more sophisticated option.

    Three points about the soups:

  • “Meal” Soups: The 24-ounce packages, with the addition of one cup of water, yield 32 ounces of soup—enough for two adults. But unless you’re a light eater, you’ll need more to fill up on: a large salad, for starters. Bertolli paired the soups with different artisan breads, a nice touch.
  • Price: The soups aren’t inexpensive: The bag will cost $8.59 or so. But the price is justified by the quantity and quality of the ingredients you’ll be digging into.
  • Sodium: As with almost all prepared foods, there’s a ton of salt—mostly hidden, as the soups taste just fine. But one serving comprises 45% of your DV of sodium.
     
    Still, with the cold days of winter approaching, you know that you can walk into the house, open the freezer and enjoy hot and hearty soup in about 10 minutes. Start boiling the water before you hang up your coat.

    Learn more at VillaBertolli.com.

    Find more of our favorite soups and recipes in our Gourmet Soup Section.

    How many types of soup have you had? Check out our photo-filled Soup Glossary.

      

  • Comments

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