I had no pre-made plans for dinner tonight, so I started looking for soups recipes in the Jack Bishop cookbook I mentioned last night and the Simple Suppers from Moosewood. In the Moosewood cookbook, I found a super simple recipe for a soup that consisted basically of broth, bread and cheese. Hey, I can handle that.
Moosewood version starts out with garlic and a homemade vegetable broth. I only had canned vegetable broth on hand and was a bit hesitant to use that as a base - I think the canned vegetable broths are a fine base for a more substantial soup, but probably not good enough to pull off a soup with so few ingredients. I opted for canned chicken broth (I couldn't call it a vegetarian meal any longer, but it was a meal without meat in any case). Since two cans only equal 28 ounces, I made up the last 4 ounces with white wine - another ingredient that I thought would help make up for the lack of homemade broth.
My fresh parsley was slimy and I didn't have any fresh basil, so I threw in a bit of Italian herb seasoning when I sauteed the garlic.
To assemble the soup, you place the stale or toasted bread in a bowl, along with the shredded cheese and then ladle the hot broth over top. Sprinkle in a little parsley or fresh basil and add some freshly ground black pepper and that's it! I used the leftover croutons from the butternut squash soup and again, the whole grain sourdough worked really well.
To construct this soup you take the stale or toasted bread, place it in a bowl along with the shredded cheese (I used Fontina) and then ladle the hot broth over top. It was surprisingly good. In fact, we liked it quite a lot and I can see this - and many variations - becoming a regular at our house.
I really am enjoying the simplicity and fabulous flavors that are coming from these two cookbooks - they are proving to me that you don't have to slave in the kitchen all day long to turn out some really fabulous dishes - fabulous, fast food that fits into a busy weeknight schedule.