Hi all,

I taught a great herb class a couple of weeks ago and we made the most wonderful herb wreaths. Small wreaths 3-4 inches in diameter just perfect to set in a pot of soup, in a pot of ice tea, or in your rice maker to infuse your rice (thanks to Brett for that great idea!)

We started with a sturdy herb, trailing rosemary or lemon grass, then wove around them the other herbs to create the taste profile we were hoping for.   But I promised the class some recipes of soup that the wreaths would be good in… so here goes:         Enjoy!

Tomato Soup with Roasted Garlic and Herbs

- makes about 8 cups of soup -
Adapted from FatFree Vegan Kitchen.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 can (28-ounce)Fire-Roasted diced tomatoes
1 can (28-ounce)  Fire-Roasted crushed tomatoes
3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
8 cloves roasted garlic
Salt and pepper to taste

Soup wreath with (peppers, rosemary, parsley)
1 or 2 tablespoons sugar (optional)
4 tablespoons plain yogurt (optional)
Croutons (optional)

Procedure

1. Sauté onion and celery in olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. When onion is translucent (about 7 minutes), add the tomatoes, broth, and soup wreath. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low heat for 10 minutes.

2. Transfer half of the soup to the blender (remove wreath and set aside), add the roasted garlic, and purée until fairly smooth. If you’d like a chunky soup, add the blended half back to the pot. For a smoother soup, blend the rest of the soup and return it to the pot. Add salt, and pepper to taste, put the wreath back in, and simmer for about 10 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Taste the soup, and if it is too acidic, add sugar, just enough to take the edge off. Take out the wreath and discard. If desired, serve with croutons or a tablespoon of yogurt stirred into each bowl.

Tom Yum Goon

Thai Hot and Sour Soup

2 servings

4 cups water

1 cup raw peeled and deveined shrimp

5 mushrooms

1 lime

1 lemongrass/Kaffir lime wreath

2 tablespoons fish sauce

1 tablespoon nam prig pow (optional)

Cilantro for garnish

(Wreath should include hot chili, cilantro, lemongrass and Kaffir lime leaves)

Start boiling the water in a 2 quart pot. Add the wreath to the water and let boil for 5 minutes.

Put the fish sauce and 1 lime’s juice into the bottom of the bowls you will serve the soup in.  Dice the cilantro and set aside.

Clean and half the mushrooms and add them to the pot.  Add the shrimp and turn off the heat.  Shrimp get  tough very quickly, and will cook even when it is just sitting in the warm broth.  Remove and discard the wreath. Scoop the shrimp and liquid into the serving bowls immediately.   As soon as you add the liquid to the serving bowls you will see that the broth becomes cloudy because of the lime juice.  Add the nam prig pow.  Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

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