Sun Oven Tuscan Soup

This classic Italian soup is served in almost every home and restaurant in Tuscany. Traditional Tuscan bread is called “pane sciocco” and is made without salt. I’ve never found real, salt-free, Tuscan bread outside of Tuscany. Not even in other regions of Italy.  A crusty sourdough is a good substitute for this Sun Oven version.

Ribollita

Ingredients

1/2 pound dried cannellini beans, previously cooked, cooking liquid reserved

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus additional for serving

2  onions, chopped (about 2 cups)

3 carrots, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup)

3 stalks celery, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup)

6 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 can (28 ounce) Italian plum tomatoes in puree, chopped

4 cups shredded savoy cabbage

4 cups coarsely chopped kale

1 bay leaf

1 sprig rosemary

Vegetable broth

Good quality crusty bread, (preferably 1 day old), sliced

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat. Remove leveling tray and place a rack or trivet on the floor of the cooking chamber.

In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the carrots, celery, garlic, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Add the cabbage, kale, bay leaf, rosemary, and 1 cup broth. Cover and transfer to the Sun Oven. Cook until the vegetables are tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the pot from the Sun Oven. Leave the Sun Oven out. Discard the bay leaf and rosemary sprig. Put about 1/3 of the cooked vegetables into the bowl of a food processor and puree until smooth. Return the puree to the stockpot.

Drain the beans, reserving their cooking liquid. Put half of the beans in a food processor with a little of their liquid and puree until smooth. Add enough vegetable broth to the bean’s cooking liquid to measure 7 cups. Add the whole and pureed beans along with the vegetable broth mixture to the stockpot and stir to combine. Put the stockpot back in the Sun Oven and continue cooking until heated through, about 45 minutes. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.

Ladle a little soup into each serving bowl. Line each bowl with the sliced bread. Cover with more soup. Sprinkle each serving with Parmesan cheese and drizzle with olive oil.

Makes 8 servings.

 

 

 

Solar Soup with Autumn Flavors

This soup has all the colors and flavors of fall. Serve it with some nice bread and a side of kale or other dark leafy greens for a wholesome vegetarian meal.

Autumn Sun Oven Red Lentil Soup

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon cumin

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Solar Simmered Soup

Celery root can be found in many supermarkets. It’s an odd looking, knobby brown bulb shaped vegetable with a crisp texture and a slightly peppery flavor. In can be eaten raw in salads or cooked, preferably solar cooked.

Silky Sun Oven Celery Root Soup

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 large celery root, peeled and shredded

1 large potato, diced

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat.

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until softened. Stir in the garlic. Add the celery root and potato and stir to combine. Add the broth, cover and transfer the pot to the Sun Oven.

Cook until vegetables are tender, 1 to 2 hours. In a small bowl whisk the cream cheese with about 1/2  to 1 cup of the liquid. Using an immersion blender, or working in batches with a blender or food processor, puree the soup until smooth. Stir in the cream cheese mixture. Add the nutmeg. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the parsley.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Curried Solar Soup

Colorful carrot soup is a great way to start a meal.

Sun Oven Curried Carrot Soup

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium onion, chopped

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced

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Solar Soup Time

I’m not a big fan of parsnips but every now and then I just have to give them another chance. I can’t think of any other food I do this with. So far this soup is the best parsnip recipe I’ve found.

Sun Oven Parsnip Soup

(Adapted for the Sun Oven from Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution)

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

2 celery stalks, sliced

2 small onions, chopped

1 1/2 pounds parsnips, peeled and chopped

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Guilt-Free Cream of Asparagus Solar Soup

Canned evaporated fat-free milk is a great alternative to cream, it’s lower in calories and has a longer shelf life. I always keep some in my pantry.

Creamy Sun Oven Asparagus Soup

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 baking potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes

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Vegan Solar Split Pea Soup

Caramelized onions and cumin seed give an exotic twist to an old classic.

Sun Oven Split Pea Soup with Caramelized Onions

(Adapted for the Sun Oven from Gourmet magazine)

Ingredients

2 cups dried split peas, picked over and rinsed

1 teaspoon dried basil

2 bay leaves

6 cups water

4 cups thinly sliced onion

1 teaspoon cumin seed

4 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat. If necessary, remove the leveling tray and set a rack on the floor of the cooking chamber to accommodate your large pot. Click here for more info on fitting large pots in your Sun Oven.

Combine the peas, basil, bay leaves, and water in a large pot. Pour the oil into a shallow pot or cake pan that fits on top of the soup pot. Add the onions and cumin seed, stirring to coat. Cover and place in the Sun Oven. Cook until the onions are golden and the peas are falling apart, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Discard the bay leaves. Using an immersion blender puree the soup in the pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the onions and serve.

Makes 8 servings.

Solar Cabbage Soup

Savoy cabbage is one of my favorite vegetables. It is sweeter and more tender than other varieties of cabbage. It’s great in soups, risottos, and can even be consumed raw. It’s worth seeking out if your regular store doesn’t carry it.

Sun Oven Savoy Cabbage Soup

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1 large leek, white and pale green parts only, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 medium savoy cabbage, cored and shredded

1 small white potato, peeled and cubed

1 quart broth (chicken or vegetable)

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Solar Fava Bean Soup with Pancetta

Inexpensive dried fava beans can be found in the Hispanic food section of most supermarkets. More expensive ones can be found in specialty stores or the gourmet food section of some supermarkets. The only difference seems to be the packaging.  I choose the cheaper ones.

Sun Oven Fava Bean Soup

Ingredients

1 pound dried fava beans, picked over, rinsed, soaked overnight, and drained

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small onion, finely sliced

1 clove garlic, minced

2 ounces pancetta, diced

1 tablespoon tomato concentrate

salt and pepper to taste

for serving:

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Chilled Solar Soup

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corin