Since Antarctica is home to scientists from all over the world, there is not one distinct cuisine. There is however, one common theme that ties them together, limited ingredients. Since it is so cold, very little is grown in Antarctica so when they get a new batch of supplies, fresh vegetables are a real treat!
On PBS Kids there is a program called Elinor Wonders Why. In one particular episode they make backyard soup. Simply put, they make a soup out of the vegetables from their garden in their backyard. Martin has been begging for us to make backyard soup, the only problem? We do not have a backyard garden. So when I discovered the joy of fresh veggies in Antarctica I decided this would be the best time to make our own backyard soup.
- 4 large carrots, peeled and cut
- 8 sm/med potatoes, peeled and cut
- 1 leek chopped
- 32 oz vegetable stock
- 32 oz chicken stock
- 3 Tbs butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Tbs Dried rosemary
- In a large pot, sweat the carrots and leeks with the butter and a pinch of salt.
- Add 1 cup stock and using a wooden or silicone spoon, scrape the bottom of the pot to release any fond (the brown stuff in the bottom of the pot, created by the cooking veggies)
- Add the remaining stock, potatoes, and rosemary.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to low and simmer till the potatoes are cooked (easily inserting a fork or knife into a potato)
- Adjust the seasoning and serve with crusty bread
Fresh Crusty Bread
After doing much research, I learned that in Antarctica, they eat a lot of fresh bread and that is about the only ‘fresh’ thing they enjoy most meals. This crusty bread is the perfect pairing to hot delicious soup. One of life’s simple joys is dipping good bread into hot delicious soup.
- 875 g All purpose flour
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 package of yeast OR 2 1/4 tsp yeast
- 3 cups of water
- An electric scale
- Place a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer onto an electric scale. Hand your little chef a measuring cup or scoop and encourage them to fill the bowl till the scale reads 875. (why by weight and not cups? No more headaches 🙂 Little cooks often add too much or compact the flour, so if the number is not right you can simply add or scoop it out.)
- Add the yeast and salt, use your hand or a spoon to mix in with the flour
- Add the water and mix with a good wooden spoon or the dough hook on a stand mixer. (If you are in a time crunch use warm water- it will speed up the raising time, but will not have an in-depth flavor. If you can, use room temp water and give the dough the time it needs- you will be rewarded!)
- Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and a tea towel and allow to rise for 2 to 3 hours.
- Preheat your oven to 450 F and place a pizza stone in the oven at least 45 minutes prior to baking. Add an oven safe bowl with a few inches of water in the bottom- this is the secret to achieving a good crust, steam!
- Once your dough has doubled in size tip it out onto a lightly floured piece of parchment paper.
- Flour your hands to reduce sticking, and form your dough into a ball- touching it as little as possible.
- Dust the to with flour and then with a sharp serrated knife, cut an X or slashes into the top of the loaf.
- Slide the parchment onto a cutting board and use that to transfer the loaf to the oven. Again use the parchment paper to slide the bread onto the pizza stone. (Parchment paper will save you with this recipe! It will help you get it into and out of the oven, think of it as a bread magic carpet)
- Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.