You’re practically looking at my latest Zucchini Soup recipe, in the picture below. It was SO EASY to make, using some of the garden surplus I got from a friend. (We all get extra zucchinis from “friends” this time of year, right?)
And I had some frozen artichoke hearts from Trader Joe’s. You did know about those, didn’t you? They’re reasonable priced, and their texture is much better than that of their canned friends. Plus, the canned ones usually have extra ingredients (salt, and sometimes a weird marinade). Such a product might substitute in this soup, but I prefer the unadulterated, frozen ones.
If you want to go to the extra work, you could use fresh artichokes. I didn’t, but I’m still taking the last few photos for the Soups’ On cookbook, so I had to throw an actual fresh artichoke into the picture for aesthetics’ sake. But I really didn’t want to go to that much work.
So this recipe was perfect!
I had gotten inspired by a recent trip to the Stinking Rose. And even though we WERE the stinking roses, for a day or two afterward (garlic fumes emanated from our pores for a good while), I was inspired to roast some garlic of my own. And put it into a recipe.
I didn’t want to go to too much bother though. Some folks roast the whole head of garlic, skins on and all. Then they squeeze the soft, roasty garlic “meat” out onto bread and such. But I just peeled several cloves and stuck ’em in the slow cooker with a large zucchini, and let them roast/stew/cook for 30 minutes or so.
Then I just pureed all that with some thawed, frozen artichoke hearts, some olive oil, and some salt. I added a bit of my homemade chicken stock too– it was awesome!
Artichoke Garden Soup
Zucchini is elevated to new heights with the addition of artichokes and garlic. It adds body to the soup, allowing the other flavors to come through. It’s an easy soup; serves 4-6.
- 4 c. zucchini, in chunks (about 3-4 standard sized)
- 3 cloves fresh garlic
- 1 c. chicken stock or water
- 1 1/2 c. frozen artichoke hearts (about half of a 12-oz. bag)
- 1/4 c. virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Optional: green onion or chopped herbs for garnish
1. Use slow-cooker or other favorite pot to steam zucchini and garlic until tender, about 30 minutes. Use: > Approx. 4 c. zucchini, in big chunks > 3 cloves fresh garlic > 1 c. chicken stock or water
2. When zucchini and garlic are cooked, add: > 1 1/2 c. frozen artichoke hearts, thawed > 1/4 c. virgin olive oil > 1 tsp. salt
3. Let all the ingredients heat up, then process them in a blender, food processor, or with an immersion blender, until smooth. Add enough boiling water (or extra stock) to make it the right consistency.
4. To serve, add chopped green onion or other herbs for garnish.