Way back in the late 1980s, Mrs. Poolman and I went on our first cruise. During a stop in Charlotte Amalie in St Thomas, USVI, we had lunch at a small outdoor café. I had a bowl of cream of artichoke soup and French bread that was outta-sight. That memory stuck with me when I made my first pot of corn chowder (See yesterday’s post.) I experimented a little and here is what I came up with. Pretty good, if I do say so myself.
Note: I revised this post to make it a little easier to follow, without reference to yesterday’s recipie.
Cream of Artichoke Soup (my own adaptation)
* 1 large sweet onion, chopped
* 2-3 stalks of celery, finely chopped
* 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
* 1 tablespoon of flour
* 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
* 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
* 2 cans of artichoke hearts – chopped fine
* 3 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
* 1 cup half-and-half
* kosher salt and pepper
1. Saute onion and celery until soft.
2. Add the garlic, paprika, and red pepper and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
3 . Add 1 tablespoon of flour and stir smooth.
4. Stir in the artichoke hearts, broth, and half-and-half and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
5 . Transfer half the soup to a blender and puree until smooth. Return to the pot, add 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and stir to combine.
6. Divide the soup among individual bowls.
For presentation, I toast a few slices of French bread under the broiler with garlic salt, butter and parmesan cheese and float one in each bowl. I also sprinkle a few flakes of parsley just for accent.
1. I almost ALWAYS double the recipe.
2. In a double recipe, the SIX cups of broth equals three normal cans of chicken broth. In a double recipe, use 3 cans of artichoke hearts.
3. If you don’t have smokey paprika, regular paprika will do.