Michel Bras purees this lush mushroom soup with bread toasted to a dark brown to thicken the texture and deepen its flavor. He learned the trick from his mother growing up in the Aubrac mountains, one of France’s poorest regions. "I used to mix bread crumbs with sugar for a little treat," Bras says. "We were happy with very little."
White beans substitute for the usual potatoes in this chowder, made with sweet butternut squash, briny littleneck clams and smoky bacon. Rancho Gordo cellini beans give the soup a buttery richness, but Great Northern beans are terrific as well.GO TO RECIPE
Antioxidant-rich fennel is one of several good-for-you ingredients in this wonderful soup. Viana La Place simmers Parmigiano-Reggiano rinds in the broth to give it a rich, cheesy flavor. It's another example of the "nothing wasted" approach that Italians take to their cooking: "I also strain the soup and use the broth as a base for other dishes," La Place says.GO TO RECIPE
Mild Spanish smoked paprikaalso called pimentóngives dishes an appealing smokiness. Using the sweetest, ripest tomatoes in season, Melissa Rubel makes a simple yet luscious soup flavored with smoked paprika and served with crunchy cheese toasts.GO TO RECIPE
Meaty portobellos are especially good for adding substance and flavor to this soup, but shiitakes or other mushrooms will work well, too. You can also add a ham hock to the pot while the split peas cook, if you like.GO TO RECIPE
Michael Symon defines himself as a "porketarian," saying he can't get enough of the meat. For his luscious chili, he uses incredibly flavorful and succulent pork cheeksan unusual cut worth seeking out. If pork cheeks aren't available, pork shoulder (cut into 2-inch pieces) can be substituted.GO TO RECIPE
The fiber-rich beans in this soup make it satisfying enough to be a main course. This version gets an extra healthy boost from cabbage, a completely underrated vegetable that's loaded with fiber as well as vitamins A and C.
Though Shelley Lindgren hasn't cooked professionallyher 20 years of restaurant experience have been front-of-the houseshe has picked up several recipes from hanging out in the kitchens of places where she's worked. This silky, citrus-spiked soup, which can be served warm or chilled, is adapted from a dish from Acquerello, an elegant San Francisco restaurant where Shelley learned the basics of Italian cooking and wine.GO TO RECIPE
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