Deborah, my favorite farmer, tends to be very generous with almonds. Last week, when I was putting away my latest delivery of 2 pounds of almonds in my freezer, I realized that I already had 9 pounds in there. I’ve mostly been using them for making almond butter and having a batch of spiced almonds at my desk for when I get hungry. Clearly, I needed to branch out and step up my consumption. While checking under almonds in the index of my copy of Cooking in Spain, I discovered a recipe for almond soup. This was a bit labor intensive, but sooo tasty: rich but not heavy. It also called for bread, and since I still had had half a loaf of failed bread on hand, this recipe was a win-win. A word to the wise, it calls for blanched almonds, which weren’t too hard to make myself. Simply put the almonds in a bowl, pour boiling water over them, let them sit for 1 minute, drain off the hot water, rinse with cold, and drain again. Then spend 20 minutes or so in front of the t.v. popping the skins off.
Sopa de Almendras
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 lb blanched almonds
- 1/4 tsp saffron
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 lb bread, diced (preferably stale)
- 10 peppercorns
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar, or red wine vinegar
Heat oil in a soup pot over medium high heat, and in it, toast the almonds, saffron, garlic & bread, until they are lightly golden. Poor into a food processor or blender along with peppercorns, cumin, vinegar and 1 cup of broth, and process until smooth. Heat remaining broth in the same pot, whisk in the puree, and bring to a boil. Simmer covered for 15 minutes. Serves 4 to 6.