For the past two years, since I started an all-things-soup blog, I haven't published many soup recipes here on The Perfect Pantry. Let me make amends with this super-comforting yam, apple and carrot soup. On a recent Sunday morning, I found a gorgeous yam on my counter top, alongside less-than-stellar carrots and apples that had more brown spots than good bits. After some judicious trimming, all went into the soup pot along with an onion, some aromatic ginger root, and garam masala, the blend of several warm Indian spices. If you don't have garam masala on your spice rack, use mild curry powder with a bit of cumin and coriander. Orange juice brightens the flavor of the root vegetables. The yogurt, optional for those who prefer a vegan soup, creates great "mouth feel" at the end.
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Rhode Island folks love their clam shacks. Most of these summer-only operations sit along the south coast on Narragansett Bay, with names that hint of the mythic grandmas' closely-held recipes that set one apart from the other: Flo's, Evelyn's, Aunt Carrie's, Iggy's. Though from time to time you might find a "modern" dish on the menu (and by modern, I mean something that's not fried), you can order two items wherever you go -- clamcakes and chowder. The clamcakes, balls of dough filled with chopped clams, range from ethereal to canonball. And while some shacks sell more than one variety of chowder (pronounced chowdah hereabouts), they all offer Rhode Island clear clam chowder, the local specialty.
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Are you feeling soup deprived? I realize that ever since I created Soup Chick®, my blog about all things soup, more than a year ago, I haven't shared many soup recipes here on The Perfect Pantry. That's just wrong, isn't it? So, when my husband Ted declared (to my great surprise) this pea soup his new favorite of all the soups he's taste-tested for me, I knew this was a recipe you'd want to have. It's quick and easy, and the electric green color will brighten up even the most dismal rainy Spring day. I've only made this soup with frozen peas, and it's a great success, but I plan to try it this summer with garden-fresh peas, too. Maybe that will become Ted's new new favorite.
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It was a dark and stormy night, and the wind blew, and the swirling snow piled up to a height above my knees. Safe and warm inside the house, I hankered for soup, but not just any soup. A good, thick, New England soup. A chowder. And I had to work with what I found in the pantry. Lucky for me, The Perfect Pantry yielded some treasures, and what began as a soup to fill an immediate need turned into a soup so good I ate it twice in one week. I was delighted to find salmon in the freezer, but it's not integral to the soup; use frozen shrimp, bits of leftover chicken, or omit the protein altogether. Whenever I buy a can of chipotle chiles in adobo, I open it immediately and empty the contents into a container with a tight-fitting lid. I keep that in the refrigerator for months, to perk up everything from mayonnaise to scrambled eggs. It's a key element in the success of this recipe, as is the roux that transforms this soup into a chowder.
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