Garlic plays an important role in Puerto Rican cuisine. This, of course, is one of the reasons I love Puerto Rican cooking. Anything with garlic has to be good. Did you know that garlic is closely related to the onion and chive? It has been known to man for over 6,000 years and was used by the ancient Egyptians. I don't know if it's technically true, but Gilroy, California, calls itself "The Garlic Capital of the World". Garlic is used in the foods of many parts of the world, including Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Central and South America. And, as we know, garlic is happily used in the foods of the Caribbean. More importantly, it as used in our dinner tonight. If you have been reading this blog for any time, you have probably noticed that I love soup. This is definitely one of our favorites.
Sopa de Ajo (Garlic Soup)
adapted from "SOFRITO - The Essence of Puerto Rican Cuisine"
1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
8 garlic cloves, ground in mini-processor
4 c coarsely crumbled French bread
6 c chicken stock
2 eggs, beaten
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Shaved parmesan (optional)
Warm EVOO in saucepan over low heat. Add the garlic and stir frequently. Cook for 2-3 minutes; do not let garlic brown. Stir in the bread crumbs and raise the heat to medium. Cook until bread is golden, but be careful not to burn. Add the chicken stock, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Pour half of the soup mixture into mini-food processor and turn on high. Return mixture to soup and pour in beaten eggs. Stir constantly, simmering a minute or two. DO NOT bring to a boil as this will cause it to curdle. Pour into serving bowls and garnish with shaved parmesan, if desired. Serve with French Bread croutons, if desired.
I do want to state that I am not trying to copy Rachael Ray when I use the acronym EVOO. Don't get me wrong; she is totally cool! But I don't want to be guilty of trying to be like anyone else. But I got tired of typing extra virgin olive oil all the time, and everyone knows what I mean when I say EVOO (thanks to Rachael!), so I figure it saves me a whole 30 seconds. LOL
MUSIC TO COOK BY
El Gran Combo
Until next time, Happy Cooking! : )
"It's amazing how much can be accomplished if no one cares who gets the credit." - Unknown