Saturday, April 2, 2011

Short-Rib Soup with Mushrooms and Israeli Couscous

Spring is beginning to make its presence known, in my part of California. I already spotted the first of the California grown asparagus-- yes!  Our Wisteria is in full bloom, and my rose buds are showing promise of rose flowers in our garden.

 If you've been following the news in California, we've had some really heavy rains.  Then, just when we were worried that our local river might flood, we were blessed with 80-degree weather for the last two days.  Today, we're back to overcast skies and chilly winds.  Crazy weather!   I am never sure if I can uncover our Weber grill, or it's time to braise something, or make soup.  Before the recipes for all the Spring vegetables start hitting blogsophere, I wanted to post the soup that I made with the leftover Red Wine Braised Short Rib recipe that I posted a couple of weeks ago.

Speaking of the last two weeks, I have been missing in action.   Suffice it to say that my work schedule doesn't leave me enough time to post recipes as much as I once did.  I miss it, terribly.  For now, it seems I can only post once a week... twice, if I'm lucky.

With that said, let's make soup.  I love making soups, year-round.  It's fun for me to transform leftovers into a delicious soup.  When I make pot roast, I always make souI. When I made the short rib recipe, I saved the vegetables that were used in the braising of the short ribs. I cut up the leftover short ribs and set them aside.


This recipe also comes from Chef Huber Keller, who inspired me to make the Red Wine Braised Short-Ribs.  He used Israeli Couscous.  I happened to find a bag of Harvest Grains, that I had purchased at Trader Joe's.

I cooked one cup the Harvest Grains, per the instructions on the bag...

...and set it aside.  Make a bouquet garni by wrapping the parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and 2‐ inch celery piece into a 2‐inch piece of leek. Alternatively, wrap in cheesecloth.

Chef Hubert Keller used Shitake mushrooms.  I used Cremini mushrooms, because it's what I had on hand. i decided to brown them in a little olive oil. You don't have to do this, and you can just add them to the soup sliced raw.  If you don't have leftover cooked vegetables, then simply saute a mirepoix of onion, celery and carrots, and saute them in bacon (or olive oil).

To the vegetables, add the remaining braising liquid, red wine, bouquet garni and some beef stock.


Add the chopped short ribs, couscous and mushrooms...

Truthfully, I liked the soup almost more than the actually braised short rib dinner. The braising liquid is what makes the soup so rich and flavorful.


So there you have it-- how to turn leftovers into something really flavorful and filling.  A printable recipe card is at the bottom of this post.  

I haven't been able to visit any food blogs for two weeks, and I'm regretting that I'm missing out on some terrific recipes. . I'll do my best to pop in and visit those of you who are on my blog roll-- and to my newest followers on my blog and my Facebook Fan Page.  I'm sorry I haven't been around much.   I'll find more time, soon.  I'm working on it!

Cheers!





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15 comments:

Anonymous said...

What a delicious way to use the leftovers! Yummmy!

bellini valli said...

This is a perfect soup for these inbetween days of Spring. Work does have a way of keeping us from blogging doesn't it:D

Joanne said...

The weather is keeping us guessing over on the east coast also...although we are nowhere near 80 degrees! This short rib soup sounds like the perfect way to use up those leftovers!s

Kim said...

Your post is really make me wish I lived near a Trader Joe's. I love that harvest grains blend. How fun is that?

You certainly make some tasty and gorgeous looking soups and this one is no exception!

Allie said...

I'm just catching up on all your great posts! It never gets old :) Don't worry about not posting as much, I love when you do get around to it! I love the grain blend from TJ! One of my favorites. Have you ever tried their pot roast? Seems like a crazy thing to try there but it is amazing and so easy...you microwave it. I know, such a cheat but so great on something we could make ourselves!

Deb in Hawaii said...

This looks wonderful and so full of flavor too. BTW--that TJ's Harvest Grains mix is one of my favorites. ;-)
Thanks for joining in Souper Sundays this week. ;-)

All Things Yummy said...

I keep looking at that bag of Harvest Grains at Trader Joes but didn't know what to do with it. Your dish looks delicious so I can't wait to try it.

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Spring just keeps refusing to make an appearance around here! Dishes like this would really hit the spot. At the end of the season I get a little tired of soup, but this is one way to keep it interesting!

Cheryl said...

That is gorgeous, seriously my tummy is rumbling! I hope your schedule slows down soon!

Proud Italian Cook said...

Your food always looks good Deb, but today my eye was on your beautiful wisteria!

Anonymous said...

The soup looks delicious, but what is your secret to those beautiful blooms on your wisteria?!

Patti said...

Sounds yummy! I'm trying to squeeze in as many soups as I can before the warm weather hits...although here in Northern Michigan it could be a while! The Harvest Grains from Traders Joes really caught my eye. I wonder if I could find something similar at my local food coop. (no Trader Joes around here). I'll have to do some checking.
Oh and I have to say...that wisteria is gorgeous! I can't wait to have flowers blooming...I'll even be happy to see dandelions! Right now everything is still brown with barely an green poking out.

Maris (In Good Taste) said...

These are fantastic pictures and have convinced me that I will be making this tomorrow!

Anonymous said...

hi wonderful recipe, but had a question, if i have no trader joes near me, can i use something different than that? is there anything else beside harvest grains i can use? thanks for the recipes

Debby Foodiewife said...

Dear Anonymous,
Yes, of course, you can easily substitute Israeli Couscous. I would think that would be very easy to find at most any grocery store. If you've never used Israeli Couscous, they look like little pearls. In fact, the Harvest blend that I used has some in it. Glad you enjoyed the Short-Ribs!