Ale soup was far from my radar. But then three things happened, in this order:
1) on my flight to (or from?) Vancouver last week I watched Michael Smith, whom I’m going to see in a few days in Jasper, make cheddar and ale soup on the little TV in front of me. It looked good, even though I’m not a beer fan. It reminded me of something we got once upon a time at a pub. That might have been the fantasy me in which I live in London with a rugby player.
2) I met a food writer from the Yukon for lunch yesterday. She brought me, among other things, halloumi cheese made by a blind goat herder, and a bottle of Whitehorse-brewed ale.
3) upon my return home I received an email request for all things warm and cheesy and loaded with carbs for CBC this morning. David asked specifically for cheddar and beer soup, please. He had never had it. All signs pointed to making this.
It was about as easy as it gets – saute the onion, celery and carrot in butter (Michael uses lots), shake some flour over top (mixing it with the veggies and fat prevents lumps) then adding ale, stock and cream and bringing it to a simmer to let it thicken. Then stir in a couple handfuls of grated cheese. Couldn’t possibly be easier. I do wish soup photographed a little better. Tastes better than it looks.
I’ll fill you in on the quick baguette secret tomorrow.
Michael Smith’s Cheddar & Ale Soup
adapted from Michael Smith!
1/2 cup butter (or half butter, half olive or canola oil)
1 large or 2 small onions, peeled and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1/4 cup flour
1 bottle dark beer
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cup heavy 35% cream (or 18% coffee cream, or half & half)
2 cups grated old cheddar (or aged Gouda!)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
a dash of Worcestershire sauce
In a medium pot, heat the butter over medium-high heat and sauté the onions until starting to turn golden. Add the celery and carrot and continue to sauté for a few minutes more. Shake the flour overtop and stir to coat the veggies. Add the beer, stock and cream and simmer until the soup has thickened, about five minutes more. Add the grated cheddar, salt and pepper and Worcestershire sauce and stir until smooth. Serves 4-6.
November 01 2011 09:27 pm | soup