10 September 2012

Welcome Comfort Foods with Cheesy Hop Soup and Sheet Biscuits

Cheesy Hop Soup and Sheet Biscuits


Fall is nipping at our toes, despite the fact that a welcoming summer is lingering. This invasion of our senses usually means the resurrection of comfort foods in the kitchen. With the fires over on the other side of the lake in Peachland, and the threat of friends homes and livelihoods, comfort food seems all the more on my mind as I hope for the best. 

When sick, or tired, or far from home, everyone seems to yearn for the gastronomic equivalent of a warm sweater, a kiss on the forehead or a favourite blanket. Comfort foods nourish the soul as well as our bodies. They tend to be foods that remind us of simpler times. They are familiar, simple foods. While an oven baked meatloaf with mashed potatoes, cheesy macaroni and cheese and a steaming cinnamon infused apple pie have been staples for many of us, for some of us comfort food may include a delicious gooey lasagna, a complex curry, earthy borscht or udon noodles. What is your comfort food?


It is not uncommon in late summer for my home to be filled with warm, fragrant and earthy aromas of a slow cooked roast or bubbling crock pot, but, there is absolutely NOTHING on the planet as comforting to me as a delicious, homemade soup. There's something very satisfying about making this from scratch in your own kitchen from start to finish; and using up all those bits and pieces in the refrigerator is just another bonus.  No matter what evokes these feelings of comfort in each of us an ideal comfort food should "stick to the ribs," meaning it supplies a sense of fullness and satisfaction long after it is only just a memory.

I think we all deserve a warm, comforting bowl of hot soup. The rich flavours and warming textures of cheese, beer and bread evoke memories of pure happiness. Back in the day this was probably one of the very first soups I ever had the pleasure of preparing. Then again, there is absolutely nothing so comforting to me as something featuring my ultimate comfort food... cheese. Here we are faced with cheese in the soup and the biscuits. As Ina Garten would say, "How perfect is that?" These flaky, buttery cheesy biscuits cry out for a dunk in a bowl of "hopped-up" soup. Cheddar was the cheese of choice but nothing would prevent you from using a myriad of hard cheeses languishing in your refrigerator. With this recipe, based on one from Eat Magazine, I make no apologies whatsoever for its cheese, butter and carbs but I do apologize for not having enough to share with more than 4 of my friends. 

**Cheesy Hop Soup**

1 tablespoons butter
1 leeks, white part only, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 carrots, finely diced
1 celery stocks, finely diced
1-1/2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon dried mustard
sea salt, to taste
1-1/2 cups beer (amber ale or wheat beer)
1-1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup homogenized milk
1 tablespoon local honey
2 cups Cheddar cheese, grated

In a medium-sized saucepan melt butter. Add leeks and minced garlic. Cover and saute until translucent, but not browned, approximately 10 minutes. Add diced carrot and celery sautéing for about 6 minutes until softened. Sprinkle with flour, ground mustard, and sea salt. Stir and cook for 1 minute.

Gradually add beer and simmer until liquid id reduced by half, 6 - 6 minutes. Gradually stir in stock, then milk. Cover and allow to simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, to allow flavours to develop.

While still on stove at a low temperature add grated cheese in small handfuls, stirring after each addition. Serve hot. The soup can be kept in the refrigerator up to 5 days. Reheat gently, do not boil.

Serves 4

**Cheesy Sheet Biscuits**

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 cup cold butter
1 cup grated cheese
1 tablespoon spring onions or chives, thinly sliced
1 cup cream
1 egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl whisk flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and ground mustard. Lightly toss in grated cheese and spring onions. With the large openings of a box grater grate cold butter into the flour mixture and toss with flour mixture to incorporate well.

In a small bowl mix the cream with the beaten egg.(set aside a little in the bottom of the bowl for brushing the biscuits). Pour into flour mixture. With a fork stir just until the mixture comes together. With your hands gather into a ball and shape into a 3/4-inch thick rectangle on the parchment paper lined baking sheet.

With a sharp knife cut dough into small squares and try and separate somewhat. Bake for 15 minutes then reduce the heat to 400F. Continue baking until tips are deep golden and biscuits are puffy, about 10 minutes more. Serve warm for dunking in the soup.

You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison. Best Blogger Tips

32 comments:

  1. Indeed very comforting! Both the soup and biscuits look amazing.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  2. Perfect timing for this post! It is chilly here today! I made some chicken stock a few weeks ago and froze it. Might be time to take it out and make some of your soup. Love this recipe!

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  3. I love comfort food look delicious and love your plates LOL

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  4. We feel the Fall, it's getting cold at night. We are back cooking soups. This looks perfect for a cold Fall day.

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  5. This sounds perfect to me! I have never tried sheet biscuits...what a perfect accompaniment to the soup. I am so ready for fall!

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  6. A perfect comfort food! The soup sounds great with beer & honey!

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  7. Excellent post Val, and the soup and biscuits together look fabulous. In my books, cheese + cheese = happiness :-)

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  8. Perfect for seasonal transitions

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  9. I REALLY want biscuits after reading this...in a major way.

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  10. Such a pretty, enticing presentation! Both your soup and the biscuits look amazing Val, thanks!

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  11. Val, your blog is definitely not the place to come when one is the least bit hungry ~ it's torture I tell you!! :D

    Both the soup and the biscuits look divine ~ very nice! Thank for sharing the recipes ~ I would love to try them. xo~m

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  12. You have come a very long way since that point-and-shoot two years ago. Beautifully styled, beautifully written. I would make no apologies for holding out my empty soup bowl and (shades of Oliver) saying "more?" You are so right-- soup is MY comfort food of choice. Homemade, not out of a can.

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  13. The soup sounds delicious - and with beer! That's my thing.

    I just tried a new seasonal beer - Rickard's Cardigan - I think it will go well with the soup.

    So I might try this out sooner, rather than later.

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  14. sheet biscuits?!?! what an idea! the soup looks grand too, val--nice post!

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  15. I haven't had cheese soup with beer for ages. I loved it too. And those biscuits are so cute. What a fabulous presentation Val.
    Sam

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  16. This brought back so many memories, Val. There was a restaurant in Charlevoix Michigan that served the most delicious cheese soup I've ever had. Divine. I've already copied this and will try it when the weather gets a tad cooler down here.
    The sheet biscuits would be perfect with just about anything! Fabulous post!

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  17. I just love fall too and reading this made me feel so excited! I'm also so excited to try these sheet biscuits! What a great idea, I've not seen biscuits done this way, I can't wait to try it out!!

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  18. You've come up with a perfect combination for a fall meal. The soup sounds wonderful and your sheet biscuits, new to me by the way, beg to be tried. Have a great day, Val. Blessings...Mary

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  19. I have several favorite comfort foods-- pasta, lentil soup, shrimp fried rice. But, this soup and biscuits sounds just perfect!

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  20. There is certainly a different scent to the air also. That nutty smell of dry leaves

    What a perfect fall pairing! I would have a very hard time having just one of those delicious-looking biscuits.

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  21. Yum, Val. I have a cheddar-ale soup on my bucket list, so I am saving this recipe for sure. And those biscuits! Drool.

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  22. oh my gosh, those biscuits look peeeerfect! wish I could grab one now!

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  23. Oh my Val! This is a lot of comfort! Loving the soup (must try the beer!) and those biscuits are screaming to be dunked!

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  24. OMG look at those sheet biscuits!! loving the cheesy beer soup too - the weather is just become conducive to soups here :)

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  25. Melted cheese and soup - nothing comforts better. Bring on the blankets and some comfort! Val, I always love your opening photos. They always make me smile and always draw me in.

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  26. The soup sounds really satisfying, but it's the biscuits that grab the eye. Those would be perfect with tomato soup!

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  27. Fall isn't quite here yet -- it keeps teasing us! But you've hit the nail on the head with comfort food here and my body has been craving it even if the weather isn't quite cooperating. I love sheet biscuits -- my grandmother used to make them for us. This makes me want to have a few right now!

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  28. Both look perfect to me. I'm with you on the soup - nothing is more comforting. When I was single, and going home from work to suffer with a cold, I always stopped for soup ingredients on the way.

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  29. That sure is comfort food Val. What a perfect meal for a chilly fall day. And the biscuits, well I think you know how much I enjoy making biscuits.

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  30. We're still on cold soup. But hoppy makes me happy! GREG

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  31. Delicious as usual Val. I don't even mind fall with this kind of food in the kitchen.
    Ciao,
    Dina

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  32. the only reason I can tolerate fall and winter (ugh) is the thought of homemade cheddar biscuits and pumpkin-everything! lol

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Welcome to my home. Thank you so much for choosing to stay a while and for sharing our lives through food. I appreciate all your comments, suggestions, daily encouragement and support.

Val

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