Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My Take Mediterranean Soup

I started brainstorming soup ideas about a week ago.

My third idea was a Mediterranean soup, odd, since I've never actually had a Mediterranean soup. Perhaps it's my enjoyment of Mediterranean flavours that enticed me to make a soup inspired by them. Just ask my girlfriend Theresa, when we both worked at a restaurant together, she probably saw me order 100 Greek salads.

I like olives, and tomatoes, feta, garlic, chickpeas, peppers, Oregano....I could go on. I also like soup, clearly. So I thought combining the two would be a no brainer. A no brained indeed but simple? Not entirely.

I tossed around the idea of adding quinoa, artichokes, green olives, black olives, cucumbers (gross warm if you ask me). I considered a broth base, a tomato base, and settled on a light tomato broth base :)

I didn't add the artichokes, but I still wonder if they would be a good addition - perhaps another soup day I'll try. I choose black olives over green, and served as a garnish. And no quinoa - I wanted this soup to be really light - great with a glass of wine.

I cooked this soup and just before serving I poached a fillet of sole in the dish to create a complete meal. I didn't want to add the fish to the whole pot as I feared it would get over cooked and essentially dissolve into the soup creating a funky texture.

I also served the soup without the fish, and topped it with oven roasted Roma tomatoes, pitted black olives and crumbly feta cheese - Delish! I think this would make a stunning and impressive starter to a fabulous dinner party.

My Take Mediterranean Soup


4 cups broth - I used a homemade veggie broth but store bought would work too
2 cups marinara sauce - I used homemade but store bought would work too
1 cup chickpeas, drained and well rinsed
1 zucchini, cut in half lengthwise and then sliced
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 roasted red pepper
6 Roma tomatoes
1 green pepper, chopped
2 Bay leaves
3 springs Oregano
10-15 pitted black olives
Feta cheese for crumbling on top

Optional: Sole fillets - 1-2 per person


1. Pour the broth and marinara into a pot, and set on low-med heat, add bay leaves and Oregano, simmer.

I used my homemade Harvest Marinara Sauce

2. Meanwhile, slice the Roma tomatoes lengthwise and place in a baking pan, skin side down, drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in preheated 450 degree oven and roast for 30 minutes.

3. Chop all your veggies and drain and rinse the chickpeas. Add to the broth and continue to simmer. Once the veggies have softened, the soup is ready.
4. To serve, ladle soup into a bowl, top with two slices of Roma tomatoes, a few olives and some crumbly feta cheese.


5. Ladle two ladles of soup into a shallow pan and bring to a near boil. Add a Sole fillet and turn the heat up to high. Cook the fish for only 2-3 minutes, until flaky. Serve the soup in a large bowl, add garnishes and enjoy.


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