As I look back on this past Thanksgiving, I am so grateful for my beautiful family and the love we share. The food was delicious, abundant and I am still full from stuffing my face! Then there are the leftovers. Stuffing, turkey, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, green beans, mushrooms, chestnuts, fennel etc; You can have a do over however, some items just hang around. Enter the holy trinty, mirepoix, or better known to Italians as soffrito. A mixture of aromatic herbs generally onions, celery and carrots in a 2:1:1 ratio, sautéd in olive oil, butter or a combination of both. A simple soffrito used with some leftovers and a few added ingredients can magically change those leftovers into an amazingly new dish. This was a lesson learned from my mother-in-law, who never let anything go to waste and created new dishes from simple leftovers. A turkey chili using a soffrito sautéd in olive oil with some added garlic, crushed red pepper and cumin. Add canned tomatoes, left over mushrooms, chopped turkey meat and white beans. Simmer gently for 20 minutes, taste for seasoning. Or change the fennel into a delicious soup using your soffrito with 2 carrots, a potato, bay leaf, Italian seasoning and chicken stock. Chop then sauté all the vegetables until they have released their water. Add bay leaf, Italian seasoning and 3 cups of chicken stock. Simmer until the potato is soft. Cool, remove bay leaf and blend ingredients until smooth. A healthy yummy soup to enjoy before you start eating all those Christmas cookies!
Fennel Carrot Soup
Swap out the fennel for frozen cauliflower or broccoli add a couple of garlic cloves and you have another heathy soup!