Souped-up: ski town chefs reveal recipes
Ryan Summerlin December 31, 2012
Park City chefs know that it’s hard to beat a hot bowl of soup after a long day on the slopes. This year, two local chefs’ soup-expertise will be on display in the new Ski Town Soups cookbook, a collection of soup recipes from ski town restaurants around the country.
Jennie Iverson, a soup and winter-weather fanatic has spent the last three years traveling to ski towns and sampling locally-made soups. Not surprisingly, Iverson chose the chefs at two of Park City’s favorite restaurants Uptown Fare and Riverhorse to submit recipes to the book.
Karleen Reilly, owner and chef at Uptown Fare submitted two of her favorite recipes Watermelon Gazpacho and a Black Bean and Sweet Potato Soup. "People are crazy about that watermelon gazpacho," she said "I give the recipe to everyone because they love it." The black bean and sweet potato soup was inspired by a dish her daughter loved at Renee’s a now-closed Park City restaurant.
The chef at Riverhorse, Seth Adams, also submitted a gazpacho recipe, Roasted Corn and Vegetable Gazpacho that the restaurant served last summer. The recipe had been very popular all season so Adams adapted it for smaller servings and added it Ski Town Soups. Adams points out that this may not be the most warming post-skiing soup (he would probably prefer a spicy chili or stew) but the recipe will likely win home-chefs accolades in the summer months.
The book itself is full of other mouth-watering recipes from ski resorts around the country. When compiling the book, Iverson traveled to Sun Valley, Jackson Hole, Mt. Hood, Whitefish Mtn., Big Sky, Northstar-at-Tahoe, Vail, Beaver Creek and other resort towns. Each page features a full-color photo as well as an introductory story about the soup.
Reilly is willing to vouch for the quality of the cookbook "I started to go through it and I went ‘whoa, this is one nice cookbook,’" she said, "I have maybe 75 cookbooks and I would rate this one right up there." Some of the recipes Reilly has tried include an artichoke and cheddar cheese soup and a coconut-curry soup, both of which she enjoyed.
It seems that Park City residents agree Ski Town Soups has sold out at Uptown Fare and Dolly’s and Reilly says the publishers have already ordered a second printing.
For those lucky enough to land a copy of Ski Town Soups, the 226-page book should be enough to keep your belly warm all winter. Recipes are rated on difficulty similar to ski slopes (greens are easy, black diamonds are hard). After mastering the double black diamonds, some may even be inspired to experiment with their own soup recipes. Adams recommends keeping soup recipes (or any recipe for that matter) simple. "Even with my food at the restaurant here, the simpler the better," he said. He suggests using "simple, straightforward ingredients." Reilly’s advice is about as simple as Adams’ ingredients: "just do it!" she says.
Of course, you don’t have to cook at home to enjoy soups from Park City’s featured chefs. Uptown Fare has a rotating menu of soups and sandwiches, some of which will probably never be written down. Riverhorse also changes soups seasonally. Right now, the restaurant is serving a clam chowder and a vegan tomato soup. The tomato soup is so well-liked that when Adams tried to remove it from the menu, one distraught customer came to the restaurant and actually began to cry when he learned the soup had been removed. Apparently, for some, a soup is so much more than a soup. Iverson certainly feels this way and on the cookbook’s website says she has discovered a "perfectly balanced recipe for life: a ski town, a comfortable restaurant, and a yummy bowl of soup."