I like Jacques Pepin. I don't know him personally, but I watch his cooking shows, and his cookbooks. His style is GardenFork: a lack of pretention, a desire to share and teach.
In his book, Fast Food My Way, [ Amazon Link
, IndieBound Link ] there is a recipe for what he calls Fridge Soup. Jacques looks in the fridge, pulls out whatever leftovers there are, and makes a soup. Hence the name, Fridge Soup.
What I found neat was his use of grits in this soup. ( we talked about making grits with my neighbor Charlie on this episode of GF Radio here ). Jacques uses instant grits as a thickener for the vegetable soup.
Lightbulb moment for me, the un-expert in the kitchen.
We live quite a way from the nearest grocery store, and I avoid making a trip just to buy a few things, so for dinner this weekend, I decided to apply the Fridge Soup Methodology to a real world situation.
In our fridge we had carrots - we always have carrots, horse people, you know - cabbage left over from a fermentation experiment, onions, and a sweet potato.
So all this went into the pot. I started first with the onions and olive oil, added some crushed garlic. Then in went the carrots sliced up. ( Charlie Pup knows when you are slicing carrots, and will arrive to take care of the top of the carrot for you; Henry won't eat carrots ) I like to try to get some browning on the carrots, not sure if it makes a difference, but I do it. Then the cabbage and sliced up sweet potato ( skin on , BTW ).
I added water to top it off and let is simmer. You could also do this in slow cooker. I did not add any vegetable stock or boullion; basically the ingredients were the stock, was my thinking.
I had some thyme from the garden that I hard harvested before the last big snowstorm, and it was slowly drying in a bowl in the kitchen, so in it went, though technically it wasn't in the fridge.
Some wayward egg noodles from a half open bag were thrown in when I served the soup, and there you go: Fridge Soup .
I'll have to experiment with using grits as a thickener for soup, neat idea. What do you do for simple soups from the fridge? Let us know in the comments below:
Click Here to Buy Fast Food My Way From IndieBound Here
Click Here To Buy Fast Food My Way From Amazon
You forgot the most important thing! How did it taste? Thanks.
Sarah Crowder (punctuated with food)
Love this idea. Similarly, I save up all my vegetable scraps in a bag in the freezer for future stock-making, and our soups are usually a hodgepodge of whatever bits are leftover in the fridge. Add in some fresh herbs and it's pretty much always delicious!