My Bloody Valentine
A Soup for the Sinful
Each year, we have a cook-off to kick-off our Capital Campaign at work. (like that little twist-"off" I just did there?)
And I usually win.
Not necessarily the TOP prize. But I win. Because I rock.
This year, I'm going for the gold.
Overall winner? Your awesomeness is featured in Bon Appetit's BRB Cafe. And. Well. You get a Target give card. But anyhow.
This year the event falls on Valentine's Day. A really annoying holiday where gifts begin with Kay if you are someone who likes to receive gifts that have no real purpose other than costing a shit ton of money and school children are forced to give the ugly kid in their class a foil card with a heart on it.
Valentine's should be about dark blood red colored yumminess. Deep rich porters with tones of vanilla, raspberry and chocolate. Indulgent cupcakes, tortes and other assorted baked goods dripping with "antioxidants". Morning coffee concoctions that are thick with chocolate goodness. Fruit stuffs dipped in chocolate. And pretty much just dark chocolate GALORE.
And it is perfectly acceptable to wait until National 1/2 Off Chocolate Day to buy your sweetie (or office mate - Thank you Ben) some of that goodness.
Note: This is not to be confused with National 1/2 Off CANDY Day, which is Nov 1st or National 1/2 Off Chocolate Egg & Jelly Belly Day, which is well. The day after you behead that annoying pastel colored stuffed rabbit your kid got in his basket.
Where was I?
Yes...The Capital Campaign Cook-off.
They all these have corny little tag lines like" Warm Your Heart and Support the School This Valentine's Day by giving us oodles of cash that you probably don't have just to say you are giving back to the place you slave for, which, coincidentally gives you cash by the way."
Ok...I made that last part up. But anyhow. They do have cutsie little titles that go with the theme. They bring in a chef from Bon Appetit (which, is a pretty rockin' sustainable catering company, if i do say so myself.). They have a judging session based on lots of foodie things. Chef picks some winners. People cheer and eat.
And maybe give some cash.
This year's theme? SOUP.
And the categories are:
- Best Meat/Seafood Soup
- Best Vegetarian Soup
- Best Cream/Puree/Whatever Else/We Don't Want More Than Three Categories Soup
And? Overall winner.
- I want that. Just sayin'.
I'm babbling again.
I love beets. Beets love me. Beets are also the color of BLOOD.
Beets? Also go well with...CHOCOLATE.
EVEN MORE PERFECT.
My Bloody Valentine: A Soup for the Sinful
This is a lovely take on a roasted beet and potato borscht...
With a special ingredient: CHOCOLATE.
(Note: Your lover can also be Godiva, Lilly's, Malley's, Gorants...whatever. Just some damn chocolate. The higher the cacao, the better, BTW.)
The other shining star of this soup? ROASTING THE VEGETABLES.
Nothing brings the epic goodness of a beet out like slow roasting it in some olive oil and seasoning.
After roasting goodness happens, you simmer that stuffs in some dead bird broth, mashing it up with a potato masher here and there along the way.
Then? TOSS IN THE CHOCOLATE.
Go on...Double the recipe. Use a whole half bag. Do it. YOU DESERVE IT.
Pull out that immersion blender, and puree that bloody mess nice and good so it becomes a thick pot of chocolate beet heaven.
Really. Your kitchen will be like a yummie tasting murder scene.
BONUS: If you have a significant other? Whine that it is Valentine's day and that they should at least clean up this tasty mess for you since you slaved over this FABULOUS dinner that you will break out the fancy bowls for. And...a chocolate porter. Anyhow...
Back to cooking.
Next? Toss in your vinegar/wine combo, and let those flavors become a pot of melded goodness over low heat.
Top with any of the following: Greek yogurt. Sour cream. Creme fraiche. Fresh chopped parsley. Chocolate shavings. A severed finger. (Ok. Well. Maybe not that one. But it will be funnie, no? "Labor of Love, Sweetie?")
In the end? You will have QUITE a dish to share with your loved one.
Or. Well. A bunch of coworkers and some Chef.
I WILL win.
GIVE ME THAT TARGET CARD.
- 2lbs red beets: Scrubbed. Peeled. And cut to a medium dice
- 1lb white potatoes. Peeled. Cut into medium dice
- 2 shallots. Coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper
- 5 springs of fresh thyme
- 5 cups of chicken stock
- 1/4 bag of bittersweet chocolate chips, 60% cacao
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar + 1 - 2 oz red wine
- Toppings: Greek yogurt / sour cream / creme fraiche / chocolate shavings / fresh chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Meanwhile, toss vegetables with olive
oil, salt, and pepper. Spread out in a single layer on rimmed baking sheet. Tuck the sprigs of thyme around the vegetables. Roast until tender, about
Bring the chicken broth to a
simmer in a large stock pot and add the cooked vegetables. Mash roughly with a
potato masher. Allow it to simmer for approx 10 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Add chocolate chips, and stir to melt. Simmer & stir for 10 minutes.
Using an immersion blender, puree to desired thickness. Stir in the vinegar/wine, and season to taste with salt and pepper and more vinegar if needed. Simmer to desired flavor.
Serve in bowls topped with a dollop of sour cream/Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of parsley/ chocolate shavings.
Serves 6 - 10