|Polish Dill Pickle Soup: It'll grab you!|
So yes, today there's a fun recipe but first, the reason why it's especially fun: it's featured in the weekly column that I'm writing for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the big local newspaper here in St. Louis. (Pinch me, yes, I'm really writing that!!! It's really true!)
The column is called 'Special Request' and is the Post's popular restaurant recipe request column. On Wednesdays, it appears in print in the paper's food section and online at stltoday.com. Each week, a new restaurant and a new recipe is featured. (Pinch me again. Really. DO.)
What does a proud home cook know about restaurant recipes? Well so far, the recipes that Post readers are requesting are far more humble than haute. The recipes from the first two columns are actually "very Alanna".
Today I'm sharing the oh-so-surprising recipe for Polish Dill Pickle Soup from The Fountain on Locust, a funky little restaurant here in St. Louis. We did the tasting (yes, they call this 'work') on a snowy-icy January night and the hot soup took us completely by surprise -- it's a potato soup, sure, but there's this definite and distinctive dill pickle flavor. Aiii, it's something special!
And last week on Kitchen Parade, I shared the recipe for this lovely three-ingredient raspberry dessert that I call Sugar-Free Raspberry Bliss from the Saint Louis Club. How pretty is THAT, eh?!!
So it's a great beginning to my Special Request tenure with these first two columns. Mary Billings, the woman whose huge shoes I shall attempt to fill, she wrote 501 columns. More fun ahead!
ST LOUISANS From now on, Special Request recipes will appear in the paper and online, not on Kitchen Parade and A Veggie Venture. But, should you choose to follow along, I will add the newest recipes to Delicious and am also collecting 15 years worth of recipes in an easy list at St. Louis Restaurant Recipes. Come along!
POLISH DILL PICKLE SOUP
from The Fountain on Locust
Time to table: 45 minutes
Makes 6 cups
4 cups good chicken stock, Note to Vegetarians
1-1/2 pounds (675g) russet potatoes (see TIPS), peeled and diced small to yield 4 cups
3 – 4 Polish dill pickles, about 12 ounces (340g), puréed in a food processor
1/2 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup milk (skim is okay)
1/2 cup sour cream
Salt & pepper to taste
Additional dill pickle juice to taste, optional
Bring the stock to a boil in a large pot or Dutch oven, adding the potatoes as they’re prepped. Once it comes to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are done. With an immersion blender, purée the mixture, leaving some visible chunks of potato.
Stir in the pickles and butter and simmer for another 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk the milk into the sour cream to thin. A quarter cup at a time, whisk about two cups of the hot soup into the sour cream-milk mixture, then return it all to the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Add dill pickle juice to taste. Bring back to temperature but don’t allow to boil.
To serve, transfer to bowls and sprinkle with dried dill. Can be made ahead, reheats beautifully but don’t allow to boil.
ALANNA'S TIPS & KITCHEN NOTES
Russet potatoes are often called ‘baking’ potatoes or ‘Idaho potatoes’. They have rough skins and a mealy flesh that’s especially good in soups.
~ How to Roast Potatoes to Perfection ~
~ Slooow-Baked Potatoes ~
~ Best-Ever New Potatoes & Green Beans ~
~ more potato recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture
~ Lighter Mashed 'Potatoes' ~
~ Baked Chicken with Herb-Roasted Potatoes ~
~ Those Pink Potatoes ~
~ more potato recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade, my food column