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Help with pureed soup ideas

My husband had an unfortunate accident that resulted in a broken jaw that needs to stay wired for 6-8 weeks. He is a real food fiend and carnovore, so this is very hard. And he's hungry! We've mae lots of great smoothies with protein powder and I've been making soups, but I'm running out of ideas for good, savory soups that can easily be consumed through a straw. They must be smooth since particles get stuck in the wires. I made a yummy butternut squash soup and the Silver Palate's minted green pea and spinach. Any ideas on others would be appreciated.

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  1. Sorry to hear about your husband's accident. Come cool weather, I love a potato leek soup. I wilt the chopped leeks in butter and olive oil, salt and pepper. I use fresh thyme or sage usually. Then I cook all of it in chicken stock until the potatoes are soft then puree with an immersion blender. Season (once in a while I might finish with some fresh parmesean) or add additional stock as needed. Good luck!

    1 Reply
    1. re: pfarrell

      I lived off my mom's potato leek soup after having my wisdom teeth out. She pureed it and also strained it to get any extra pieces out of the way.

      Tomato soup is also a good one.

      Chowders are good, too. Corn chowder, clam chowder... you can cook it as normal, puree it, and then strain to make sure it's smooth. Then you'll get all the tasty flavors but he won't have to deal with bits and pieces (I guess you could scoop them into your bowl and enjoy them).

      Go through the baby food aisle and see if they've come up with some new flavor combinations!

      http://threedogkitchen.com

    2. You can make a nice cream soup with any vegetable that you feel like. Saute chopped onions and some garlic. Add broth and your vegetable of choice and then simmer. Once the veggie is cooked, puree it. Add spices, cheeses, wine, etc. based on your preferences. I have enjoyed cauliflower (which loved curry powder with it), broccoli, spinach, mushroom (which should saute with the onions), and zucchini.

      4 Replies
      1. re: katecm

        I often make these kinds of pureed vegetable soups, particularly in (what passes for) winter here in southern California. My method is the same no matter what vegetable I use: peel a potato and slice it VERY thin. Peel an onion and slice it VERY thin. Put a couple of teaspoons of olive oil in a large, heavy pot (I use a dutch oven) over very low heat. Add the potato and onion and stir 'em up. Cover the potato and onion with a sheet of wax paper cut into a circle, then cover the pot. Let the potato and onion sweat for 15 - 20 minutes. Remove the wax paper and add chicken stock (I use the stuff in a box from Trader Joe's) and whatever vegetable you want to be the keynote flavor of the soup -- I especially like broccoli, cauliflower, and asparagus -- and bring it up to a boil. Let it simmer until everything is very soft. then puree it with an immersion blender. Add a little milk right at the end.

        1. re: ozhead

          Oh, the immersion blender is key. I don't understand why no one ever discusses them as a staple in any kitchen. To be able to make homemade soup in one pot in 30 minutes without breaking a sweat - or making a mess - is wonderful.

          1. re: katecm

            Amen! What a great tool it is. As if more proof were needed, here are two more words: homemade. mayonnaise.

          2. re: ozhead

            Totally agree with everything here, except I stopped worrying about slicing the onion so thin when I realized that it was getting pureed anyhow. Took me a while, though! I also don't use the wax paper, but that's my preference.

            You can also vary your aromatics (onion, garlic, celery, carrots, ginger) and use different herbs/spices. But it's basically the same method: saute aromatics in oil, add spices and "hard" herbs (e.g., thyme, rosemary), add stock and vegetables, even lentils or beans, cook till done, puree. Add soft herbs (basil, parsley, etc.) just before or after pureeing. Using this method, you can do loads of things:

            - carrot and coriander: use coriander seed as spice, add cilantro to end.
            - sweet potato and red lentil: use onion, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin.
            - potato or potato leek: I sometimes like to add dill at the end
            - parsnip and pear: a little curry powder adds a nice flavor to this.

            You can get really inventive with these.

        2. If you make some split pea soup (no ham chunks) and let it cook awhile, it gets nice and creamy. I always use chicken broth instead of water.

          1. I make a pumpkin soup.. carmalize onions, carrots and celery and set aside, then slice your pumpkin into chunks and bake until soft.. puree in batches until smooth then puree the carrots etc with chicken soup and mix together...

            1. Beer cheese soup. Have you got the fatter straws like they use for boba drinks? If they fit in his poor mouth, they might give him a more pleasant mouth feel with less sucking required. Good luck.

              1. I have made garlic soups, sometimes using roasted garlic, sometimes just starting with fresh. simmer with some broth and potatoes, finished with a bit of cream. ANd ZIP the immersion blender.
                Sometimes that meat craving can be eased a bit with deep mushroom flavors, so try a deeply sauted set of mushrooms, with some onions and maybe a few veggies, and zipped!
                A good round of spicy flavors can help, curried lentil soups, hot and sours, chile based. Pretty much anything that can be immersion blended pretty smooth would be welcome, I think.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Quine

                  I love your ideas, Quine. Epicurious has a particularly terrific recipe for roasted garlic soup which I can't wait to make once Autumn rolls around. A cream of mushroom with porcini and some chili would certainly curb meat cravings and I can attest to enjoy lentil soups every winter.

                2. I like to add thai curry pastes to my basic pureed veg soups, I don' know if your husband is into spice? The green curry paste is my favorite, with the yellow one being a second.

                  1. How about a gazpacho if he gets sick of hot soups? Maybe with watermelon (trendy!).

                    1. Oh what a terrible thing for him! I can't imagine the discomfort, and to be starving on top of that. I do think however you can keep him somewhat full with soups. He might get bored with it all and probably will never want to see it again, or he will come to love it as much of the rest of us soup lovers.

                      You can make him bisques, such as Shrimp, and Crab made thick and creamy with Sherry, or Veggie versions like an Artichoke or Mushroom. Given he has no other dietary restrictions, these can be quite decadent and quite satisfying. (For me anyway)

                      Cream of Chicken with Rice, making it all fit through a straw of course. Either puree or emulsion blend, And then there are the other spicy soups, Cream of Green Chili, or Creamy Chicken Enchilada. With the bold flavors, and crunching up a few tortilla chips, let them get soggy he will be happy for awhile anyway.
                      The chicken can be cut to fit the straw size, as someone suggested they make the fatter straws. Try Smart and Final, or get a smoothie shop to sell you a few.

                      Beef and Barley with veggies, puree or cut tiny. Pastina is a wonderful substitute for Chicken and Noodle Soup. Let them cook down awhile they will definitely work well.
                      Just making the soups flavorful and savory using garlic, fresh herbs,spices and cream will help with keep the hunger pains away.

                      All the Chowders sound hearty and should work very well.

                      But, I don't see that Asian Soups would work so well in this care, unless it's a soft egg drop. They would just lose their integrity pureed. If it were me with a wired jaw, I'd rather wait, and have it the way it should be than have it pureed. But that is just my OP....

                      1. I hope your husband is healing well and is not too uncomfortable.

                        Although I do a lot of smooth vegetable soups, your carnivore comment needs addressing. You need to make some solid meat/bone and fish stocks to use as a base for any soups you decide to make. Here in Colombia, my wife and I fish for cachama. We eat the meat; but the best part may be using head, bones, and other parts after filleting to make stock (we also use the parts after thier cooking in the stock pot). Stocks then really allow you to make hearty soups like miso. Using beef stew bones and marrow will allow you to make meat type soups with an equally hearty base. All the best!

                        1. Celery soup is great, but you'll obviously want to strain it.

                          You've of course got classic gazpacho, and you can vary the flavor and heat on that thankfully.

                          I love ratatouille, so I'd probably puree ratatouille and strain, if necessary.

                          I'd do a tomato soup w/ ricotta cheese, basil, oregano, italian seasonings all blended together for a twist on the usual.

                          Lentil soup would take well to pureeing.

                          Mushroom barley pureed would still retain its elemental flavors.

                          Also, perhaps look to salads as inspiration:
                          Feta + watermelon + watercress + olive oil
                          walnuts + cantaloupe + blueberries + watercress + goat cheese + rosemary + balsamic and/or red wine vinegar

                          these ingredients http://myplateoryours.typepad.com/my_...

                          1. I want to thank all of you for such fine ideas. I knew I could count on you to help. I did make pureed potato leek soup tonight and blended the heck out of it. He liked it, but its he's getting tired of veggie soups. I need to mix it up with some of the meatier ideas--and I think lentils or black beans would work well, too. Poor guy, we just found out he'll be wearing metal for another 8-12 weeks! I'll certainly be a soup expert by then!

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: liveforfood

                              Just a note. The fish and meat stocks I make (emntioned above) are clear and, when cold, are so gelatinous that the stock does not come out of the container when held upside-down (just like that silly proof that your eggwhites or cream have been sufficiently whipped). Such stocks make the soup very meaty--albeit completely liquid when hot.

                              1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                The OP might also try making the consommé described in this week's food section of the New York Times. Instead of clarifying with egg whites, gelatin is used to form a microscopic net to clarify the stock while preserving the strong, hearty flavor.

                              2. re: liveforfood

                                This thread got me craving soup, so I made a soup tonight with red lentils, some bacon, lots of onion, Serrano chili, lots of fresh garlic, carrot, celery, herbs de Provence, chicken broth and water. I walked away from the pot, and when I got back it, the lentils were all puffed up...Hmmmm. So I added more chicken broth got the immersion blender out and whirled it pretty well. Then brought back up to heat close to a boil, added about a quarter cup of sherry and allowed the alcohol to cook off a bit, then the soup thickened nicely on its own. I ladled some into a tea cup, added a bit of cream and stirred the cream though.
                                I was completely satisfied with the outcome of this soup, and liked it as well as the brown lentils, actually it was very filling as well.

                                My DH also had a bowl, eating it with fresh and buttered, warmed Portuguese roll, and loved it.

                                I am so ready for Fall...

                                1. re: chef chicklet

                                  So sorry! I meant to add that the consistency was perfect for a straw, and that after eating a small cup I was full!

                              3. Found Anthony Bourdain's mushroom soup recipe from the Les Halles cookbook on epicurious earlier and think it would fit your bill nicely. Might want to use beef broth instead of chicken to make it meatier.

                                http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: dinner belle

                                  i like to do an artichoke heart soup. the best part about it is that you can use the frozen kind. to add some nice flavor, you can use small amout of onion and for texture you can add potato. .

                                  i'm also a big fan of white bean soup flavored with a bit of sage.

                                  corn this time of year is awesome and would make a great puree. i recently tried a potato and peblano pepper soup and was rather happy with the results.

                                  1. re: dinner belle

                                    Dinner belle--Thanks so muc! I just want to say--oh my god! I made this soup today and it is YUMMY. Rich and delicious. I did use beef stock, as you suggested. I also finished the soup with a bit more butter and a little heavy cream (even though he does not include this in the recipe), along with a couple of ounces of a very nice sherry. What a great--and VERY simple--soup. This is a keeper...I recommend that others give this one a try.

                                    1. re: dinner belle

                                      We don't cook with any alcohol... anything we could substitute for the sherry? Is that grocery sherry as dismal as I think it is?

                                    2. Shrimp bisque if you can puree the shrimp fine enough in the Cuisinart. This would get some protein into him, too. Meanwhile (re protein) I am thinking of baked custard. And do try chocolate Boost. It sounds gross but people often love it.

                                      1. Did anyone mention sweet corn soup?? It is my favorite! It is similar to how you make sweet pea soup but use sweet corn instead. Extremely tasty!

                                        Some savory puree soups I had (in restaurants that is) included avocado and cucumber soup, strawberry gazpacho, watermelon gazpacho, carrot and ginger, chestnut soup with truffle oil, parsnip soup.

                                        1. Try adding some soup base, ham, beef, chicken, to boost flavor!

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: randyjl

                                            If he has another 8-12 weeks (poor guy!) then you will be entering Butternut squash season. I made this recipe so many times last fall that I actually got tired of making it! (Took at least eight batches of soup). I'm finally now starting to crave it as the air turns colder and the leaves start to turn. It is very filling and extremely satisfying. The recipe came from Wholefoods but it is no longer on their website. Plus it's a great way to use the last of the parmesean cheese rinds!

                                            Butternut Squash and Parmesan Soup

                                            2 onions, roughly chopped
                                            1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
                                            1/2 teaspoon chili flakes or to taste (optional)
                                            3 Tablespoons olive oil
                                            2 medium butternut squash
                                            4 1/2 cups chicken stock
                                            1 bay leaf
                                            3 sprigs of fresh parsley
                                            piece of parmesan cheese rind (I used several)
                                            1/2 cup creme fraiche (if you can't find it in the store, you can make it by mixing a ratio of 1 tablespoon of buttermilk to 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and letting it sit at room temperature for 6-8 hours, and then letting it sit in the fridge for 24 hours before using)
                                            salt and freshly ground black pepper
                                            roughly shaved parmesan cheese to serve

                                            1.) Gently fry onions, garlic, and chili flakes in olive oil in a large saucepan for about 10 minutes, or until soft and golden. Meanwhile cut off the tough skin o fthe butternut squash. Scrape out and discard the seeds, then roughly chop the flesh and stir it into the sauteed onions. Cover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash begins to soften.

                                            2.) Add the stock, herbs, and parmesan rind and simmer gently for 45 minutes, or until the squash is meltingly soft. Discard the herbs and Parmesan rind, scraping any gooey cheese into the soup. In a blender, (careful with the hot liquids) process the soup, add the creme fraiche, and season to taste. Serve piping hot with Parmesan cheese shavings.

                                          2. I am overwhelmed (in a good way) with the reponses here and have tried some already. I made crab bisque last night and it was quite good. Thanks so much for all of your thoughtful pointers and suggestions. FYI, I find that my Waring blender does a far better job with pureeing than my cuisinart.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: liveforfood

                                              Would you mind sharing the recipe you used for the crab bisque? Was it really expensive to make?

                                            2. I make this pumpkin soup and it's very easy - using canned pumpkin saves a lot of time (which you probably have less of since you are caring for your recovering husband!).

                                              Southwestern Pumpkin Soup
                                              http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

                                              1. I think a great soup anytime is French Onion soup. Even though you can't get the bread and cheese in there, you could certainly make a very rich onion soup (puree the golden carmelized onions) with roasted beef bones making your own hearty beef stock. I'm getting hungry just think about it.
                                                Use good sherry or cognac, and then float the top of the soup (it works beautifully with the cheese holding it) even though you have to skip the cheese, with a dash of good cognac or sherry. This little touch might give him a little cheering up too!!

                                                1. we make a thick soup by tossing left over stirfries into the blender: Brocoli, green pepper, thai basil, onions, coconut powder, mushrooms, ginger, chilis, fish sauce. I throw spinach into the blender too if we have some around -- makes for a great colour.

                                                  1. How about making a soffritto of finely chopped carrots, celery, onion and a whole clove of garlic (unchopped), season with salt and if you like a sprig of fresh rosemary or thyme or sage, whatever you have. Cook this over a low to medium flame until it nearly melts in your mouth, and is so delicious from slowly simmering away that you have to restrain yourself from eating it before it gets anywhere near and immersion blender or the soup. In a separate pot, while this is going on, add 1 part soake, dried cannellini to 3 parts water, a drizzle of olive oil, a sage leaf, a bit of a tomato and salt. Simmer gently with a cover set ajar over the pan until the beans are soft. Normally you would only mash or puree about a 1/3 of the beans, but you can go ahead and puree the lot, with the soffritto and as much liquid as you need. Taste for salt and black pepper. Drizzle with the best olive oil you can find. fayefood.com

                                                    1. If he likes carrots and cumin, try the carrot and cumin soup with toasted pecans (you can omit those, of course) at this link. We always make this when we have lots of carrots. http://www.mariquita.com/recipes/carr...

                                                      1. So sorry to hear of your husband's accident! I hope he is healing quickly and as painlessly as possible. Did you happen to find these other "soups and wired jaws" topics on chowhound? They might be helpful as well: http://www.chow.com/topics/336748 and http://www.chow.com/topics/320350

                                                        On a separate note, this thread has got me craving soups again! Fall is nearly here in northern California and I've been hearing the call of my soup pot lately. Some great ideas here. (:

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: chocolateninja

                                                          No--I did not see the soup and wired jaw thread. Thanks for the link! Since this incident occurred, so many people have told us that they know someone this happened to. I never knew! Its a terrible thing, really, but with all of these great soup recipes, he's as content as he can be in his state. I've tried many of these suggestions. My favorite so far is the one posted by Dinner belle (link to epicurious). Its a really delicious mushroom soup. Really easy and very satisfying.