Green Chile Artichoke Soup
I guess I still have artichokes on the brain. Paul and I are having a couple of our best friends over for dinner and I am trying to work artichokes into the menu. Chris and Carol are both great cooks, so we always need to raise the bar when we cook for them. Artichoke soup comes to mind. In the south bay coastal town of Pescadero is a classic iconic restaurant that is famous for its artichoke soup. “Duarte’s Tavern” opened in 1894 and today this “James Beard American Classic” award recognized restaurant is still family owned. Recipes for their famous soups are on the Internet, but what I am going to try to do tonight is emulate not imitate. For my homage to Duarte’s I am going to combine artichoke soup and cream of green chili soup into one. What follows here are my humble efforts.
Duarte’s uses fresh artichokes no doubt. There is no way to get the great taste they get with frozen or canned artichokes. Fortunately for me I have some great artichoke hearts from Monterey Farms. These amazing artichoke hearts deserve more that a mention. They are undeniably delicious and fresh tasting. They come in four flavors: natural, buffalo, herbal, and grilled. You can buy them online or at many local specialty markets. I have used them many times in different dishes but this will be my first attempt at using them for soup.
- 2 onions, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 2 10 ounce cans of whole green chilies, rinsed to remove seeds and chopped
- 6-8 cups chicken stock
- 3 packages of ‘Monterey Farms Artihearts’ (6 ounce, natural flavor)
- 1 cup half and half
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with ¼ cup water or stock (optional)
- Begin by sautéing 1 chopped onion and one clove of chopped garlic in two tablespoons of melted butter until soft.
- Add diced green chilies and stir unit heated through. Add chicken stock to cover and simmer on low for about 40 minutes.
- Remove from heat and cool slightly.
- Blend with an immersion blender, or in a conventional blender until smooth and set aside.
- In another pot sauté another onion and clove of garlic just as before in two tablespoons of butter.
- Add the artichoke hearts and stir until heated through. Cover with more chicken stock and simmer for 40 minutes or until the artichoke hearts are tender.
- Do not blend the artichokes!
- Add the green chile soup to the artichoke soup.
- Stir in one cup of half and half.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper
- Thicken with a little cornstarch and water if need.
If you are interested in trying the “Artihearts” from Monterey Farms, or want for information about them, you can check out their web site here. Enjoy!