Monday, November 8, 2010

Curried Mushroom and Caramelized Onion Soup & Carrot, Goat Cheese and Caramelized Onion Sandwich

At a little cafe called Loco Local a few blocks away from my home they serve 2 sandwiches I like to order. One is goat cheese and caramelized onion, and the other is grated carrot, Swiss cheese & tomato. So simple and so good. The owners Eve Rousselot and Justine Boisvert also serve a great chai and have a tempting selection of artisanale breads and pastries on offer. The breads, which are delectable, are also used to make the sandwiches. The coffee's not too shabby either.

If a friend wants to meet up I will always suggest Loco Local, because I can bike over in under a minute (for another few weeks!), and enjoy a little inexpensive good food and a warm atmosphere. I strongly suggest that if you are kicking about the Laurentians for the day that you head over to Loco Local for lunch instead of some tourist trap in Saint-Sauveur. The sandwich I chose to accompany my soup recipe is a combination of my favorite elements from both sandwiches enjoyed at the cafe.

Cafe Loco Local:
Owners: Eve Rousselot & Justine Boisvert
796 Chemin du Village

(soon to move to 800 Chemin du Village)

Morin-Heights, Quebec

note: they also sell frozen meals,
organic dry goods and hand crafted jewellery.

Carrot, Goat Cheese and Caramelized Onion Sandwich
serves 4-6
  • 5 onions, finely sliced
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 baguette, cut in half
  • 250 g / 8 oz fresh goat cheese
  • 6 multi-colored carrots, finely grated
  • Sufficient quantity sprouts, such as alfalfa or mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • In a large sauce pan over medium heat saute the onions in oil. Stir every minute or so and cook the onions until they are amber colored but not burnt. This can take up to 15 minutes. Let cool.
  • Set aside 125 ml / 1/2 cup of caramelized onions for the soup recipe to follow.
  • When the onions have cooled slather one side of the baguette with goat cheese, layer with caramelized onions, then the carrots and finish with the sprouts. Season to taste and close baguette. Cut into 4 to 6 sandwiches.
When I started experimenting with Indian cooking at home, many years ago, the best piece of advice I read was not to neglect the proper cooking of the onions. The proper cooking required often a slight caramelization that took a little time, but was always worth it. When I started caramelizing my onions my curries started improving dramatically. I make a vegetable curry a few times a month, and the whole family really enjoys it. So I thought that today I would make a curried mushroom soup and see how that went over. It went over very well and I have since had it for lunch, dinner and lunch again, and I am not a great fan of leftovers!

Curried Mushroom & Caramelized Onion Soup
Serves 4-6
  • 3 medium onions, halved, sliced
  • 30 ml (2 tablespoons) canola oil
  • 500 g (16 oz) whole button mushrooms, cleaned, halved, sliced
  • 45 ml (3 tablespoons) canola oil
  • 45 ml (3 tablespoons) curry powder
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) turmeric powder
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) all purpose flour
  • 750 ml (3 cups) vegetable stock
  • 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) whole milk (or coconut milk)
  • Season to taste
  • Heat the first quantity of oil in a large high-sided sauté pan, and add the onions.  Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the onions turn a deep golden (about 20 minutes). Remove the onions. Deglaze the pan with a splash of vegetable stock, and scrape out the browned bits (adding them to onions).  Add the second quantity of oil to the pan, and sauté the mushrooms over medium high heat until almost dry (no steam). Add the curry and turmeric powder to the mushrooms, stir to blend, and cook for 1 minute (while stirring). Add the flour and stir to coat. Cook for 1 minute more (while stirring). Add the stock and onions, and stir to blend. Simmer the soup for 15 minutes. Let the soup cool, and puree the soup until smooth. Transfer the soup to a saucepan, and whisk in milk. Bring the soup to a simmer. Season to taste and serve.
Fresh powdered curry is essential. If your curry powder is more than a year old chuck it. Try to buy curry powder in small batches to avoid it going stale quickly. Why add more turmeric when already adding curry powder.  For  20 reasons to eat more turmeric check out this site: click here.

1 comment:

  1. Yum yum and yum! As soon as I get home, I'm giving these a whirl!


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