Photograph by Gentl and Hyers Food Styling by Maggie Ruggiero Prop Styling by Theo Vamvounakis

Blistered Soup

Starters from Issue 2 – Fall / Winter 2013 – Traces

The traces of smoke are buried deep in this spicy, warming soup—poblano peppers are broiled until blistering and burnt, and they retain that comforting char all the way up to the point of purée.

serves 6

  • 1 dried chipotle chili, stemmed
  • 3 poblanos
  • 1 white onion, peeled and quartered
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • ½ cup lightly toasted pumpkin seeds
  • Crème fraîche, for serving (see our recipe)

  • 1

    Preheat broiler. Place dried chipotle in a small bowl and cover with hot water. Wrap bowl with plastic wrap and soak until softened, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, broil poblanos, onion, and garlic on a baking sheet until charred and blistered, about 5 minutes per side. Once charred, put poblanos in a bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let steam 10 to 15 minutes.

  • 2

    Drain chipotle, discarding water and stem, then chop. Stem, peel, seed, and chop poblanos reserving some of the less charred peels for garnish. Chop onion and garlic and sauté in 2 Tbsp oil over medium heat until softened and just starting to color, about 5 minutes. Add chipotle and poblanos and sauté another minute. Stir in stock and gently simmer 30 minutes.

  • 3

    Cool soup slightly then carefully purée in a food processor or blender in batches until smooth. Return to the pot and gently heat through. Season to taste.

  • 4

    Heat remaining 2 Tbsp oil in a small skillet until hot but not smoking. Fry reserved poblano skins quickly, just until they sizzle and start to crisp about 1 minute.

  • 5

    Serve soup with a swirl of crème fraîche, pumpkin seeds, and a few crisped skins.