Sopa de Pedra (Rock Soup)

December 2007
Sopa de Pedra (Rock Soup)

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Rock Soup is a children's fable told in many countries, about villagers who believe they're turning stones into soup. When I went to visit Lisbon, our guide Patricia said it's one of her favorite "recipes" because there is no recipe—just use whatever's in your fridge or cupboard. This is my version of Rock Soup.

Makes: 4 servings

Prep: 5 mins

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus more for drizzling
  • 1/2 pound chorizo, ham or leftover meat, chopped
  • 2 large baking potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 4 ribs celery, chopped
  • 3 - 4 carrots, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 - 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 15 1/2 ounce can  chickpeas, drained
  • 1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 15 ounce can  diced tomatoes or tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons hot pepper sauce
  • 2 cups cubed stale bread
  • Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
  1. In a soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the chorizo and cook for 2 minutes. Add the potatoes, celery, carrots, onion, garlic and bay leaf; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are softened, 7 to 8 minutes.
  2. Add the chickpeas and season with the paprika. Stir in the chicken broth, tomatoes and hot sauce and bring to a boil, about 6 minutes. Lower the heat and simmer until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Place 1/2 cup bread cubes in each of 4 bowls and drizzle with EVOO. Pour in the soup; top with parsley.
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