Sunday, February 24, 2019

Cream of Watercress Soup and Hot Pepper Toasts: Retro Gourmet Magazine Recipes for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

I've posted before about my love for vintage cookbooks and retro recipes and I love that Ruth Reichl likes them two and sometimes posts them on her blog. That's where I found these two recipes; Cold Cream of Water Cress Soup from a July 1958 Gourmet Magazine and the accompanying Hot Pepper Toasts from the June 1984 issue.

I made a few changes to update them--serving my soup (at least the first bowl) hot and making it vegan with coconut milk and updating the prep from two separate sievings to using my blender, once, at the end (something Ruth said she would do as well as "times change.") The hot pepper toasts were actually paired with a Cold Lettuce Soup, but I was feeling the watercress and potato more. 

Cream of Watercress Soup
Slightly Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, July 1958 via
(Serves 6)

Deb's Changes:  I cooked the potato and onion for 20 minutes in a light veggie broth, then added the watercress and cooked it another 15 minutes before pureeing it in my blender in two batches. I stirred in one can of coconut milk to the soup and heated it through, seasoned to taste and served it warm with the toasts.

Hot Pepper Toasts
From Gourmet Magazine, June 1984 via
(Serves 4) 

Deb's Changes: I used a leftover Ciabatta roll, each half sliced into thirds and used a combination of Tabasco and Sriracha (I used 1 tsp total of the hot sauces.) 

Notes/Results: I'm very happy with both of these retro dishes--the creamy, comforting soup and the crunchy toasts with their zippy heat. They made an excellent pairing with the toasts acting as an excellent dipper for the soup. I will likely try the soup cold as intended at some point this week, but I do love a warm potato soup even more and the watercress gives this one good flavor. I liked my updates and changes to the recipes and would happily make both recipes again.

Linking these recipes up to I Heart Cooking Clubs where this week's theme is Retro Recipes inspired by Ruth Reichl.

And for Souper Sundays...

Debra of Eliot's Eats made Grilled Vegetable and Goat Cheese Wraps inspired by a recent book review and a similar sandwich she enjoyed, saying "My inspiration came from Yosemite National Park and our trip there in 2016. ... I remember a fantastic lunch and a goat cheese and roasted vegetable wrap at Big Tree Lodge. ...  I thought these were delicious and just as good as what I remember from Big Tree Lodge. I asked The Hubs what would make them better. 'Bacon.'"

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shared Seven-Hour Lamb Stew with White Beans and said, "It's good to get back to posting about food after a short break. Next year I will be getting a flu shot; this bout knocked me for a loop. While it was wonderful to get back to eating something that required a knife and fork, I would like to highlight this Seven Hour Lamb stew this week. We only need a spoon for it, that's how tender it was. All the credit goes to my husband as he is the master of the Instant Pot. It's very cool to have dinner cooking by the time I arrive home from work. Yet another benefit of him retiring first 😃"

Here at Kahakai Kitchen I snuck some small mid-week sandwiches in with these Tuna Melt Sliders inspired by a recent book tour review. Although normally I prefer my tuna salad cold, the mix of ingredients and textures on the sweet King's Hawaii Rolls worked well and made these tasty little sammies almost addicting.

Thanks to Debra and Tina for joining in this week!  

About Souper Sundays:

Souper Sundays (going since 2008) now has a format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches at any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.
If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's Souper Sunday's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:
  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you. Also please see below for what to do on your blog post that you link up to Souper Sundays in order to be included in the weekly round-up.

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post. (Not to be a pain but it's polite and only fair to link back to events you link up at--so if you link a post up here without linking back to it on your post, it will be removed.)
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (completely optional).

Inlinkz Link Party

(Attention: If you are having challenges linking up this week, I'm trying to test the new Inlinkz out because they will stop supporting the old one soon. If it doesn't let you link up, let me know (comment or email) and I'll get you linked up.  --Deb)

Have a happy. healthy week!


  1. this looks so good and love the spicy toasts you served with it.

  2. Yes, I have remember lots of recipes for watercress soup back in the day and I have always wanted to try it, although I think I could make a meal out of your hot pepper toasts. Yum!


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