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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Saturday Beefcake Afternoon Delight

Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Roasted Red Peppers, 6, peeled and seeded
Leek, one cleaned, medium size
Butter, unsalted, 4 tablespoons
Garlic, 3 cloves, thinly sliced
Broth, one litre, vegetable or chicken
Sea Salt
Freshly Ground Pepper
Balsamic Vinegar, 3 tablespoons
Chives, for garnish

1. Dave Lieberman calls for roasting peppers on the stove top -- an old fashioned way that most immigrant families from Southern Italy are very familiar with. There are some commercial varieties available and Dave tells us that the way to get hold of the real magilla is to see if there are remnants of the blackened skin on the peppers.
2. Make sure the leek is washed and void of the sand that hides therein. After cutting off the tough tops make a lengthwise cut from top to bottom, going halfway in and then run cold water over it, while rubbing inside [it is very warm in here] a bit and washing the dirt away.

3. Cut the leek into 1/2 strips. The butter should be melted in a large, heavy kettle and then, Dave says, "sweat the leeks for a few minutes until they soften and lighten." and then add the garlic and cook for a few minutes.
5. Add the peppers and broth. Salt and pepper to taste. The peppers should be covered and if the broth doesn't do the trick, add some water.
6. Crank up the heat, bring it all to a boil and then lower the heat to simmering.
Add the vinegar, stir often and skim a stray pepper skin that may have eluded the process and floats to the top.
7. Cooking takes about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Let cool.
When cool, puree the soup in blender. Make sure it is cool. Dave warns about a "blender explosion" if it's not an immersion blender.
8. So, to feed your guests, you'll need to reheat this, of course. Lieberman serves it with crostini topped with goat cheese floating above it and garnished with chiv

A column staple, this is a little something to warm up your wintery afternoons. A touch of summer in late autumn.

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