Archive for September 19th, 2008

This is a lovely and rustic soup for the autumn, when the temperatures begin to dip. It has Italian herbal undertones, seasoned with basil, oregano, and thyme. I made it completely organic, and I am proudly entering this recipe into two contests.

The first contest is being hosted by Blog from Italy and sponsored by La Cucina Italiana cookery magazine – to come up with the most delicious organic Italian soup for the fall weather. For me, this recipe fills the bill. 

The second contest is for Ovarian Cancer Awareness month. In honor of Gina DePalma, author of Dolce Italiano: Desserts from the Babbo Kitchen, who was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer, bloggers from around the world are organizing and getting out the word about this horrible disease. The details of the contest are below:


O Foods for Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. In honor of Gina DePalma, author of Dolce Italiano: Desserts from the Babbo Kitchen and Executive Pastry Chef of Babbo Ristorante in NYC, who was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer, Sara of Ms Adventures in Italy, Jenn ofThe Leftover Queen, and Michelle of Bleeding Espresso are asking you to donate to the:

Ovarian Cancer Research Fund

and then, out of the goodness of your hearts and to be eligible for theOFoods for Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month Contest, please do the following:

  1. Post a recipe to your blog using a food that starts or ends with the letter O (e.g., oatmeal, orange, okra, octopus, olive, onion, potato, tomato) and include this entire text box in the post;


  2. If you’re not into the recipe thing, simply post this entire text box in a post on your blog to help spread the word about the event and Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.


  3. Then send your post url [along with a photo (100 x 100) if you’ve made a recipe] to ofoods[at]gmail[dot]com by 11:59 pm (Italy time) on September 30, 2008.

We will post a roundup and announce prize winners on October 3.


  • 1 Recipe Prize for best “O food” concoction: $50 gift certificate to Amazon;
  • 1 Awareness Prize for only publicizing event: Copy of Dolce Italianocookbook.


From the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund:

  • Ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from gynecologic cancers in the United States and is the fifth leading cause of cancer death among U.S. women; a woman’s lifetime risk of ovarian cancer is 1 in 67.
  • The American Cancer Society estimates that 21,650 women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in the U.S. in 2008 and about 15,520 women will die from the disease.
  • The symptoms of ovarian cancer are often vague and subtle, making it difficult to diagnose. There is no effective screening test for ovarian cancer but there are tests which can detect ovarian cancer when patients are at high risk or have early symptoms. 
  • In spite of this patients are usually diagnosed in advanced stages and only 45% survive longer than five years. Only 19% of cases are caught before the cancer has spread beyond the ovary to the pelvic region. 
  • When ovarian cancer is detected and treated early on, the five-year survival rate is greater than 92%.

Please donate to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund 
and help spread the word!

Here is my recipe submission.

Roasted Potato soup with whole grain toast points
2 pounds (1 kg) all-purpose potatoes, peeled and cut in half
2 medium onions, halved and peeled
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 medium head garlic
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced
1 teaspoon fresh basil, minced
2 1/2 tablespoons margarine or butter
6 cups of broth (vegetarian, chicken, or beef – your choice)
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup milk or soy milk
8 slices whole-grain bread, toasted (or your favorite bread)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Place the potatoes in a large bowl. Snip the root end off each onion and cut each half into 3 sections. Add the onions to the potatoes, breaking up onions with your fingers to separate.
Drizzle vegetables with olive oil, add the thyme, and toss well. Spread the vegetables on a baking sheet, season with salt and pepper. Slice the top third off a head of garlic and place it on a piece of foil. Put 1/2 tablespoon butter/margarine on top of the garlic and drizzle 2 teaspoons water onto the foil. Fold the sides of the foil to enclose and place on the pan with the vegetables. Roast in oven for 45 minutes, then remove the garlic. Continue roasting vegetables for another 15 minutes.
In a large saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer over medium-low heat. Transfer half the roasted vegetables to a food processor and add 1/2 cup hot broth. Process mixture until fairly smooth, then transfer to bowl. Repeat with remaining vegetables and a little more broth, squeezing garlic pulp out of the husks into the last batch. Stir all pureed mixture into the broth in the pan, add the minced fresh oregano and basil, and keep the pan over low heat.
In a small saucepan, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter/margarine. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly 1 1/2 minutes. Stir in the milk and cook, stirring often, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in a ladleful of soup and cook one more minute.
Add the mixture back into the soup. Cook over medium heat until heat through, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Serve with toasted whole grain bread, cut into points. Makes 8 servings.

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