The mother of invention
One of the great things about the start of football season is… it’s football season.
Downside is that summer’s almost gone and cooler temps are on the way, followed by even colder temps and arctic air after that.
But that also means it’s the beginning of soup season.
Nothing warms the soul like a perfectly cooked, piping hot bowl of soup to chase the cold away.
This recipe was created by accident two hours before the grand opening at Galley 57 restaurant back in 2016.
It was 2 p.m. and we were set to open at 4 p.m.
One of my servers asked, “What’s the soup today, Chef?”
I was so busy doing other things that I forgot about the soup.
Because it was opening day, we didn’t have the leftover proteins, rice, beans, etc. that chefs use to make soup.
I did, however, have some red bell peppers that we had used to make mango salsa along with some leftover mangoes which we also use for the salsa.
I had a creative thought and just went with it.
I roasted the peppers over open flames, let them rest, peeled then pureed them.
I started heating up heavy cream, added stock, reduced it down a bit then added some sriracha (hot pepper sauce).
I then thickened it with a roux (cooked butter/flour mixture) and gave it a taste.
It was ok but not the result I was looking for.
So I took a leap of faith and pureed a few mangoes, added them to the soup and bam, it was a hit.
In fact, it’s the most requested soup I’ve made to date.
Sometimes you can change an entire flavor profile by adding one creative ingredient that enhances the other ingredients to create harmony and depth.
Normally, if whatever you’re making is missing an ingredient, it’s usually fat, salt, acid or heat.
Before adding the mangoes, the soup had fat from cream, it had salt – because you have to salt everything – and it had heat from the sriracha.
But it was missing the fourth element, acid.
The soup is called fire-roasted bell pepper mango.
It’s got a bit of a kick, but you can control the heat level with more or less sriracha.
It’s easy to make and fun to eat.
Fire Roasted Red Bell Pepper Mango Soup
In a medium stock pot over medium high heat add:
2 cups chicken stock
2 – 15.5 oz. cans of fire roasted red bell peppers, drained then pureed smooth
1 tablespoon sriracha pepper sauce
2 cups pureed mango (frozen mango works but thaw it before you puree it)
Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, let cook until soup reduces to a soup-like consistency then add:
2 cups heavy cream
Bring to a simmer, let reduce stirring often.
Salt and pepper to taste
If you want the soup to be thicker, add cold water to cornstarch in a separate bowl, stir to make a smooth “slurry” then add a little at a time to get the consistency you want.