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Special of the day: A Crowd-pleasing Souper Bowl Party Line-up

Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup in Footbowls

Having a Harbaugh time choosing sides for this year’s Super Bowl XLVII matchup? Will you be rooting for Jim’s San Franscisco 49ers or John’s Baltimore Ravens? For the first time ever in professional football history, brothers will be coaching opposing teams in the Super Bowl. At least for their parents, Jack and Jackie, maintaining neutrality in New Orleans on Sunday seems to be the safest call.

As for kicking off an at-home Super Bowl party, centering your menu around soup makes game day prep a snap.  Each of the three superstar recipes can be thrown together in no time with minimal effort freeing you up to enjoy your guests, the game and the halftime show, of course.

Regardless of what’s happening in the Mercedes Benz Superdome on Sunday, you’ll score big with this week’s Special of the day: A Crowd-pleasing Souper Bowl Party Line-up of recipes for Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup in Footbowls, Chimichanga Chili and Beef, Sweet Onion and Sautéed Mushroom Stroganoff Soup. Enjoy!

Recipes and food photography by Sydne George.

Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup in Footbowls

Tomato-Basil Tortellini Soup in Footbowls

(serves four, can be doubled)

2 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. flour

2 cups chicken stock

14.5 ounce diced tomatoes (I used fire-raosted tomatoes with spices)

2 cups mixed cheese tortellini

½ cup heavy whipping cream

½ tsp. salt

½ cup fresh basil, sliced into thin strips at the last minute

4 Telera rolls (Albertson’s Bakery) or other oval shaped rolls suitable for serving soup

½ cup shredded parmesan cheese

Heat Dutch oven or large heavy soup pot over medium high heat. Melt 2 tbsp. butter. Add flour and whisk until combined. Add chicken stock and whisk until incorporated. Bring to a gentle simmer. Add diced tomatoes, stirring to incorporate and tortellini and cook 7-9 minutes until tortellini is cooked through. Add heavy cream and salt, stirring to incorporate.  Remove from heat. Add fresh basil strips to soup.

Cut tops of rolls off and hollow out rolls to make footbowls.

Ladle soup into footbowls and garnish with fresh parmesan shreds and fresh basil leaves. Serve immediately.  Enjoy!

Chimichanga Chili

Chimichanga Chili

(serves 6-8, can be doubled)

2 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. flour

14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes (I used Fire-roasted with garlic and they were delicious.)

2 cups chicken stock

2 cups pork tenderloin, roasted and cooled

7-ounce can mild green chiles

½ tsp. salt

2 cups tortilla strips, for serving

1 cup mild cheddar cheese, grated

*Pregame play:  Brush a rimmed roasting pan with olive oil. Place a one-pound pork tenderloin roast in prepared baking pan. Cover with ½ cup salsa, spreading to cover top of roast. Bake at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes. Let cool completely.  Slice into ¼ inch cubes.

Heat Dutch oven or large heavy soup pot over medium heat. Add butter and melt. Add flour and stir until blended. Cook, stirring frequently until golden brown. Add diced tomatoes and stir, cooking briefly until slightly thickened. Add chicken stock, cubed roasted pork tenderloin, green chiles and salt, stirring to combine. Cook until heated through.

Place a handful of tortilla strips in bottom of each soup bowl. Ladle Chimichanga Chili on top of tortilla strips and top with grated cheese. Enjoy!

Beef, Sweet Onion and Sauteed Mushroom Stroganoff Soup

Beef, Sweet Onion and Sautéed Mushroom Stroganoff Soup

(serves 10-12)

1 pound beef stew meat (I found some that had been tenderized which worked great.)

¼ cup flour

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. pepper

2 tbsp. butter

3 tbsp. butter

3 tbsp. flour

2  26-ounce containers beef stock

1 tbsp. butter

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 sweet onion, thinly sliced into rings

8 ounces white mushrooms, washed, dried and quartered

3 cups wide egg noodles

1 cup sour cream, divided, for garnish

Place ¼ cup flour, salt and pepper in gallon-sized sealable plastic bag. Add beef, seal and toss to coat.

Heat Dutch oven or large heavy soup pot over medium high heat. Melt 2 tbsp. butter. Brown beef in butter, stirring occasionally. Remove browned beef from pot.

Add additional 3 tbsp. flour and melt. Add 3 tbsp. flour and stir to combine. Add stock gradually, stirring to incorporate. Bring stock to a gentle simmer.

In separate sauce pan over medium high heat, heat 1 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp, olive oil until hot. Add quartered mushrooms and sauté briefly. Remove mushrooms from pan and set aside. Add sliced onions and sauté until golden. Remove from heat. Reserve about ½ cup sautéed onions for garnish, if desired.

Add beef, mushrooms, onions and noodles to simmering stock and cook just until noodles are cooked, about 5-7 minutes. Serve hot in soup bowls garnished with generous dollops of sour cream, reserved sautéed onions and freshly ground pepper. Enjoy!

Sydne George is a food journalist specializing in recipe development, food writing and food photography. She can be reached at sydnegeorge@hotmail.com . Sydne’s recipes from “Special of the day” are archived at http://sydnegeorge.com/blog/.