On evenings that you want to eat well, instant pancit won’t pass your palate, and there’s no decent dinner at home, you muster enough willpower to actually attempt to cook something.
Here I was, thinking what I could do with the leftover can of button mushrooms in the fridge.
There’s pasta and beef cubes, and evaporated milk in the fridge. Why don’t I make sopas!
I googled a recipe which called for chicken, which I didn’t have. Besides, I can’t work with anything that used to walk or swim. I will learn one day though.
Mushroom will do as substitute! I asked Laiza to chop some onions, garlic and the mushrooms and prepare the glass pot.
Laiza called me when everything was ready, and I went to in the kitchen with the fire ready.
The pot was still wet, so I waited for the water to evaporate, then poured a few tablespoons worth of sundried tomato infused olive oil.
It was left-over oil I used to store the sundried tomatoes I bought in Italy. The websites say not to throw it away as it becomes tasty on its own.
The oil smoked right away! But I still added the onions – first, because Laiza made big slices of them.
And the oil started to pop! The oil was too hot!! While panicking a bit because of the splashing oil I hastened to add the mushroom quarters and the chopped garlic. That kind of lowered the oil’s temperature a bit. I saw that some of the onion got really dark, but that was okay, because I liked the taste of slightly burned aromatics in soup. I learned that taste from some Japanese soups.
Once the dry ingredients were sautéed nicely brown, I added some salt and pepper, holding back on the salt as I realized the beef cubes will make it salty enough.
I then added water, filling half of the pot, and brought it to boil.
Threw in a beef cube, five handfuls (handsful?) of penne, lowered fire to the lowest setting, covered the pot with a partial opening, and left it for ten minutes.
Afterwards, I saw that the pasta had bloated from absorbing the water, so I knew they were cooked. I added two ladlefuls of evaporated milk and it was done!
Now came the tasting part. It was a normal sopas, only it didn’t taste like chicken – duh!
I loved how the garlic has become paste-like when I bit it, almost similar to roasted ones. To be honest, this tasted more like garlic-onion soup. But I liked it!
However, I thought it could use a bit of specialness.
So I put a few drops of sesame oil on my first cup. Not bad! The nutty taste reminded me of ramen.
Then I thought, since I used mushrooms and olive oil already why not italianize this some more. On the second serving, I put less than half a teaspoon of black truffle sauce and there you have it,
My first sopas – it’s a social climber, but its taste has climbed all the way to the heavens!