ONLINE EXTRA -- HOT SOUPS FOR COLD DAYS: Black Bean and Chicken Chili Soup . . . Chipotle Squash Soup . . . Chicken, Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo, etc.

Black Bean and Chicken Chili Soup 1 tablespoon canola oil 3/4 cup chopped onion 2 cloves minced garlic 2 to 3 tablespoons chili powder 1 tablespoon dried oregano 2 teaspoons cumin 1/4 teaspoon salt 3 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken 1 28-o...

Black Bean and Chicken Chili Soup

1 tablespoon canola oil

¾ cup chopped onion

2 cloves minced garlic

2 to 3 tablespoons chili powder


1 tablespoon dried oregano

2 teaspoons cumin

¼ teaspoon salt

3 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken

1 28-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes

2 cups fat-free chicken broth

1 10-ounce package frozen corn, thawed

2 15-ounce cans black beans, rinsed


Shredded 50-percent-reduced-fat sharp cheese

Fat-free sour cream

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or Dutch oven on medium heat. Add onion, garlic, chili powder, oregano, cumin and salt. Cook 4 minutes or until vegetables are softened.

Stir in chicken, tomatoes with liquid and broth. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.

Stir in corn and beans; cook 5 to 10 minutes or until slightly thickened. Garnish with cheese and sour cream if desired.

Yield: Serves 8.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 267 calories, 23 grams protein, 31 grams carbohydrates; 7 grams fat, (1.1 gram saturated), 21 percent of calories from fat, 40 milligrams cholesterol, 9 grams fiber, 736 milligrams sodium.

Chipotle Squash Soup


1 small winter squash (2 to 2 1/2 pounds), halved and seeds removed

1 cup water

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 large yellow onion, chopped

2 large carrots, chopped

1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped


6 cups chicken or vegetable broth

2 chipotle chilies in adobo, seeded and chopped

2 teaspoons sea salt, plus more to taste

½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary

½ cup pumpkin seeds, toasted and salted, for garnish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place squash, cut side down, on a baking sheet with sides. Add water and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the pan and roast squash until it is soft to the touch, 40 to 45 minutes.


Melt butter and the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil together in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, until onion is very soft and light brown. Add carrots and bell pepper and continue to cook and stir until the carrots are soft, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes, until it is fragrant but not brown.

Add broth, chipotle chilies, salt and black pepper and bring the soup to a low boil over medium-high heat. While the soup is coming to a boil, scoop out the squash flesh with a large spoon. Discard the skin and add the flesh to the soup. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove soup from the heat and stir in the rosemary. Allow soup to cool slightly before pureeing. Working in batches if necessary, pour the soup into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade and puree until it is smooth, or puree soup directly in the pot using an immersion blender. Reheat if necessary and serve warm, garnished with toasted, salted pumpkin seeds.

Yield: Serves 8 to 10.

Chicken, Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

2 chicken breast halves, on the bone

1 small onion, quartered, peel left on

1 carrot, cut into chunks


1 celery stalk, cut into chunks

Salt to taste

About 10 whole black peppercorns

1 pound kielbasa, cut into ½-inch rounds or half moons

¼ cup vegetable oil

¼ cup flour

1 medium onion, finely chopped

½ green bell pepper, finely chopped

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 pound medium shrimp, peeled

Cooked white rice, for serving

Place chicken, onion, carrot and celery into a small stockpot, add water to just cover chicken, season with salt and whole black peppercorns. Bring to a boil, skim off any foamy gunk, then lower heat and simmer until chicken is cooked, about 20 minutes.

Remove chicken from pot, and continue to simmer broth. When chicken is cool enough to handle, remove skin and bones and put them back into the pot. Tear or cut chicken into bite-size pieces and reserve. Continue to simmer broth while you prepare remaining ingredients, then strain broth and reserve.

Cook kielbasa in a large skillet until lightly browned on cut edges, remove from heat and reserve.

Combine vegetable oil and flour in a Dutch oven or large heavy skillet, and stir over medium high heat until the mixture (roux) turns dark tan to medium brown. Be careful not to burn or scorch it. Add onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic to brown roux and stir until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes.

Stir in 3 cups reserved chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Stir in reserved cooked chicken and kielbasa and simmer for 10 minutes to combine flavors. Add more broth if desired. Just before serving, stir in shrimp and cook just until shrimp are pink and curled. Serve gumbo over white rice.

Yield: Serves 8.

Vegetable Bisque with Dungeness Crab

3 large carrots

½ head celery

2 large onions

2 large shallots

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil

6-ounce can tomato paste

½ gallon spring water

3 ounces creme fraiche

1 ounce cognac

Salt and white pepper

Dungeness crabmeat, cooked and picked over

Sweat the carrots, celery, onion and shallots in the grapeseed oil until they begin to break down.

Add tomato paste and cook 30 seconds more to remove the acidic taste. Do not caramelize. Add water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until vegetables are completely tender.

Cool the bisque slightly, then process in a blender in batches until smooth.

When ready to serve, return soup to high heat and whisk in creme fraiche and cognac. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve with a generous topping of crabmeat.

Yield: Serves 6.

French Onion Soup

3 tablespoons olive oil

¼ pound butter

8 yellow onions, cut in half, then sliced ¼-inch thick

1 cup white wine

1 cup sherry

3 sprigs thyme

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon peppercorns

1 quart chicken stock

2 quarts beef stock

Salt, pepper

Sliced baguettes

Olive oil

Emmenthal cheese, shredded, to garnish

Chives, minced, to garnish

Heat butter and oil in a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized.

Add white wine and sherry. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer until reduced by half.

Tie the thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns in a square of cheesecloth to make a sachet. Add, along with stocks; simmer for 1 hour. Remove sachet from soup. Season to taste.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush baguette slices with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake until crispy, 5 to 10 minutes.

To serve, fill warm soup bowls with onion soup, float two baguette croutons on top and add a generous sprinkling of cheese. Slide under the broiler and cook until the cheese melts and caramelizes. Garnish with chives.

Yield: Serves 10 to 12.

Crawfish and Mushroom Etouffee

½ pound butter

2 onions, diced

½ head celery, diced

3 red Fresno chilies, sliced

3 red bell peppers, diced

¼ cup garlic, minced

1 cup flour

2 quarts mushrooms, halved

2 bay leaves

6-ounce can tomato paste

2 23-ounce cans clam juice

3 cups rich chicken stock

¼ cup Worcestershire sauce

¼ cup hot sauce

1 teaspoon dried thyme

½ tablespoon crushed red pepper

1½ pounds crawfish

Salt, black and white pepper, cayenne pepper to taste

Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Saute the onions, celery, chilies, peppers and garlic until beginning to soften, seasoning with salt and pepper. Add flour to make roux, stir well to combine.

Add remaining ingredients, except for crawfish, and let simmer until flavors come together, about 30 minutes. Add crawfish and simmer 20 minutes more. Adjust seasoning and serve.

Yield: Serves 8 to 10.

Butternut Squash Soup

1 large yellow onion, julienne

½ clove garlic, cut in slivers

4 ounces butter

3 white peppercorns

1 bay leaf

4 sprigs thyme

1 ounce piece fresh ginger

1½ pounds butternut squash, peeled, chopped

2 cups chicken stock

2 cups water

1/3 cup cream

½ teaspoon cayenne

Kosher salt, white pepper

Granny Smith apples, creme fraiche, toasted pumpkin seeds, garnish

Saute onions and garlic in butter until translucent.

Place the peppercorns, bay, thyme and ginger on a square of cheesecloth, and tie it into a sachet. Add, along with the squash, chicken stock and water, to the onion. Bring to a simmer and cook 20 to 25 minutes. Remove sachet.

In a blender, puree soup with cream and cayenne. Season with salt and ground white pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and garnish with diced apples, creme fraiche and toasted pumpkin seeds.

Yield: Serves 6.

Winter Cioppino with Fennel

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

¼ cup chopped fennel

3 tablespoons chopped yellow onion

3 tablespoons minced shallots

3 cloves garlic, minced

¼ cup dry white wine

28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

2 tablespoons minced flat leaf parsley

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 cup bottled clam juice

1 cup water

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

½ cup unsalted butter

8 ounces Prince Edward Island mussels

8 ounces Manila or Littleneck clams

8 ounces halibut, cod or tilapia, cut into chunks

4 ounces cleaned calamari, cut into 1-inch-wide rings

4 ounces large shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails on

2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

Fennel fronds to garnish

In a large, heavy saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the chopped fennel, onion, shallots and garlic; saute 4 to 5 minutes, until golden brown.

Stir in wine, then tomatoes, parsley, red pepper flakes, clam juice and water. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes. Add butter; stir to melt, then remove from heat.

In a large cast iron skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Toss in the mussels and clams; cook for 4 minutes. As the mussels and clams begin to open, add fish, calamari and shrimp, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Saute 2 to 3 minutes, until shrimp turn pink. Discard unopened mussels or clams.

Add 1 cup tomato mixture to seafood; simmer 5 minutes. Then pour the seafood mixture into the large saucepan, and simmer 2 to 3 minutes more.

Ladle into soup bowls. Sprinkle with basil, and garnish with fennel fronds. Serve with toasted French or Italian bread slices for dipping.

Yield: Serves 6.

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