Thursday, July 26, 2012

Zucchini and Rosemary Vichyssoise

My perpetual inability to grow zucchini grieves me.  Sure, I plant it, I plant LOTS of it.  And I get plants, BIG plants, some of them the size of a small Buick, but zucchini?  No.  Thank goodness it’s prolific elsewhere and always available, because I have a three-ring binder full of recipes for its use.  One of my favorite ways to use it is in soup.

A vichyssoise consists of four elements: onions/leeks, potatoes, cream, chicken stock.  That’s it.  Put that together in any reasonable combination and you have vichyssoise.  It can be served hot, cold, or room temperature.  I love it not only for its comfortingly smooth texture and light taste, but also for its ability to be turned into a wide range of flavored soups.

Vegetarians can substitute vegetable stock for the chicken stock; vegans can do the same and completely eliminate the cream.  Almost any herb can be added to alter the flavor, and a wide variety of vegetables can be added as well.  I have made varieties of vichyssoise containing carrot, sweet potato, broccoli, cauliflower (surprisingly rich and amazing with the addition of nutmeg), and zucchini.  The zucchini variety has graced many a St. Patrick’s Day table because of the beautiful green hue.  I’ve also found that it is a universal favorite, even the vegetable haters love this.  I serve mine with a slice of zucchini bread.  There is something about the slightly sweet and lightly savory that make this a fabulous combination.

Zucchini and Rosemary Vichyssoise
Adapted from Bon Appetit

2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
4 cups chicken stock (homemade preferred)
1 large russet potato, peeled, diced
4 medium Melissa's organic zucchini, thinly sliced
¼ cup whole milk or cream

1 zucchini cut into 1/2-inch cubes
Chopped green onions

Melt butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Mix in garlic and rosemary. Add stock and potato; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Add sliced zucchini; simmer until tender about 15 minutes. Working in batches, puree in blender. Season with salt and pepper; stir in milk or cream.

Cook cubed zucchini in saucepan of boiling salted water for 30 seconds. Drain. Rewarm soup over medium heat. Ladle into bowls. Top with zucchini and croutons. Sprinkle with green onions.

For more great zucchini recipes, I recommend this book:

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Eat Laugh Love said...

This looks amazing. We don't grow it b/c we get boatloads in our CSA box. What a great use, especially with this heat.


SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

I thought zucchini grew where no other vegetable could! I've stopped growing zucchini because it wants to take over my entire veggie plot. I do love it but a little love goes a long way :) This does delicious!

Mich - Piece of Cake said...

I love zucchini, and this looks really yummy and healthy. The rosemary would definitely make it wonderfully fragrant.

Martha said...

I'll have to try this -- zucchini are abundant in our area!

Mary said...

I'm not a zucchini fan but I would definitely love this soup with the combination of potato, leek, chicken stock & cream! I love the addition of rosemary~ we are rosemary lovers! Love your adorable bowl :)

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

Your Vichyssoise sounds terrific and is such a beautiful color.

cathy@my1929charmer said...

This looks so good, and I just love zucchini. I don't know if I ever combined zucchini and rosemary before, but I'm curious to see how the flavors work together. So glad you shared your creative inspiration with Sunday’s Best – your creativity helped make the party a success!

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

Great... I need all the zucchini reicpes I can get! I had a bumper crop this year! Sorry you are having no luck growing them!
Thanks for sharing your yummy soup at ON THE MENU MONDAY!

Couscous & Consciousness said...

I grew my first zucchini plant last year. I had no idea what I was doing, but was thankful that it fruited extremely prolifically - for months on end I picked at least one (sometimes two) zucchini nearly every day. I'm looking forward to the forthcoming summer to have another try. I'm definitely going to try your vichyssoise when my crop comes to fruition.

Carole said...

Hey, I enjoyed your post. That soup looks so fine. I found it via Stone Gable's On the Menu Monday. I have linked in some rhubarb and banana jam I made to use up some bananas that were turning brown. Have a nice week.

ally said...

zucchini with rosemary is a brilliant combination!

Pam said...

I have to cook this! Where did you get that aweeesome green bowl with the handle at Pattie? I would love to have a few of those. Once again I just love the photo. Great job with the post.