Thursday, February 9, 2012

A Month of Soups: Eggplant Soup

A lot of people told me they don't like eggplant. I get that. But, this soup has conversion power!

It's almost a vegetarian recipe, well, except for the beef and pork! But, if you took those out, I’ll bet you’d still like the soup this makes. It is a very flavorful with the unexpected honey and spices.

Of course, removing the meats makes the soup serve fewer people.

Eggplant Soup (serves 8-10)

1 T olive oil

1 med onion, diced

½ pound ground beef

½ pound ground pork

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 ½# eggplant, cubed

4 medium carrots, cut into coins

1½ ribs celery, diced

2 cans diced tomatoes with seasonings

4 c vegetable broth

2 t honey

1 t nutmeg

1 cinnamon stick

2 end rinds of parmesan cheese, 1-2” long

½ c quinoa

1 T fresh parsley, chopped

½ c Asiago cheese

In Dutch oven, heat olive oil on medium high. Add onions, carrots, and celery. Add garlic after a couple of three minutes. When onion is translucent, remove mixture from pot. Add beef and pork. Cook until no longer pink.

Turn heat to medium-low. Add eggplant and salt. Cook covered for 5-10 minutes, until eggplant has softened and reduced in size. Add in onion mixture. Cook for five minutes, stirring continually. Add tomatoes and broth. Cook until mixture comes to a slow simmer.

Add honey, spices and end rinds of parmesan cheese. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Add in quinoa and simmer for another 20 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and rinds (if you can find the pieces) and discard. Serve in bowls with parsley and Asiago cheese on top. Great with ciabatta bread and fruit slices.

DH’s Rating: 4.3 Tongues Up! He’s not an eggplant fan, but he really liked this soup. He was surprised at some of the ingredients that gave depth to the soup, like the cinnamon stick and cheese rinds.

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