I try never to complain about the weather.
I’m not always successful at this, especially during September’s hotter-than-the-inside-of-an-oven temperatures, but to me, those hot, humid (sometimes seemingly endless) days are so worth it for the cool, dry winters and the year-round flowers.
We’re sitting right between two cold snaps right now. Relatively speaking, compared to what the rest of the country is going through, but our forecast calls for temperatures going down into the 20s & 30s for the next two nights. Truth be told, I love it when it gets cold here in January. Really cold days are so infrequent that I get pretty excited to take advantage of wearing fleece jackets, breaking out an extra blanket, and lighting a candle or two.
Time to crank up the stove for some soup!
Ever since I saw Food and Wine‘s version of a Reuben Chowder in their October issue, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. A Reuben deconstructed and turned into soup? Sign me up.
I wanted to make some changes, though, to create a flavor that’s a little more traditional and true to the sandwich. I added some Swiss cheese and swapped in the corned beef for the meats that were originally used. This is comfort food all the way, and it’s just perfect for the cold weather that’s happening everywhere right now…even here in the sunshine state.
Looks like we’re all (sort of) in this together for the next couple days!
- 2 T. olive oil
- 4 cups cubed pumpernickel bread
- 2 T. unsalted butter
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 ¼ lb corned beef, cut into ½” chunks
- 2 T. all-purpose flour
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups sauerkraut, drained
- ½ tsp. freshly-ground back pepper
- ⅓ cup crème fraiche
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 4 oz. swiss cheese, grated
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bread cubes, stir to coat with the olive oil, and season lightly with salt and pepper. Stirring often, cook until cubes are crisp on the outside and slightly chewy on the inside, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Melt the butter in a soup pot set over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until softened, 5-6 minutes. Add the corned beef, and cook until heated through, 4-5 minutes.
- Sprinkle the flour into the pot, stir until it’s totally dissolved, and cook for 1 minute. Slowly add the chicken stock, and stir to combine.
- Add the sauerkraut and black pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil then turn the heat down to medium low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Add the crème fraiche and scallions.
- Serve hot, topping each bowl with some grated swiss cheese and pumpernickel croutons.
Adapted from Food & Wine.