Monday, March 5, 2012

A few weeks ago, I was inspired by a fellow blogger's soup recipe, but finding some of the ingredients took awhile.

Joyce, a fantastic and  prolific cook over at October Farm, made a delicious-looking Wild Rice Soup recipe.

Of course, she used ham - an ingredient I don't have here in Istanbul. I substituted  Turkish sucuk. This garlicky, spicy cured "sausage" is an excellent substitute for ham, Andouille sausage, pepperoni and Italian sausage even though it's made from beef not pork. It's not the same, but I make it work.
Wild rice is another thing I went on a Foodie Treasure Hunt for around the city. I settled for a box of wild black rice I found at my local Macro Center. This rice is the same brand I used to make my Spicy Black Bean and Ground Beef One-Pot Soup awhile back.

Then, I waited to go to my Saturday  pazar in Beşiktaş to find istiridye mantarı (oyster mushrooms). These mushrooms are so beautiful and fresh right now! I bought 1 kilo for 10 TL (about $5.65).
These Turkish oyster mushrooms got roughed up a bit in the bag on our walk home, but still tasted  wonderful!
Unlike the U.S., I can't just drive to one giant super store and buy all my groceries at once. Sometimes, it is an inconvenience, but generally I try to treat it as a culinary adventure. At the pazar, I find the freshest produce AND at the best prices. Sometimes, I haggle to get a better price too. And the sellers can tell me where the product came from in Turkey. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Finally, I had all my ingredients, and I was ready to make my own version of Wild Rice Soup with Sucuk. The soup was hearty and satisfying, but the black rice turned the soup a very dark, ugly color.

But I'm sure you will enjoy the spicy sucuk, the earthy mushrooms, sautéed veggies and wild rice all combined in one bowl like we did.

Afiyet olsun!
My wild rice soup with sucuk
Where to shop:
·                     Macro Center: Abdi Ipekci Cad. No: 24/26, Nişantaşı, Istanbul (Look for Sezon Venere Nero Pirinc in a black box next to the other dried beans and bulgur.)
·                     Great spices and dried teas - Ucuzcular Baharat, Mısır Çarşısı, No. 51, Eminönü, Istanbul

Wild Rice Soup with Sucuk
Serves: 10

1          T.                     corn or vegetable oil
2          c.                     wild rice or black rice
1          tsp.                  salt
5          c.                     water

2          T.                     corn or vegetable oil
2          T.                     butter
1          ea.                    large onion, diced small
5-6       ea.                    celery stalks, chopped small (about 2 c.) Substitute leeks if you can't find celery.
5-6       ea.                    carrots, chopped small (about 2 c.)
As needed                   salt and freshly ground black pepper
4          ea.                    bay leaves
1          tsp.                  turmeric
2          c.                     sucuk or ham, diced small (I used one 270-gram link of dana sucuk)
3          c.                     istiridye mantarı (oyster mushrooms), rinsed and roughly chopped
1/2       c.                     parsley, roughly chopped

5          T.                     flour
2          qts.                  chicken stock
1          ea.                   container Knorr tavuk suyu (condensed chicken stock) 
1          c.                     whole milk

In a medium-sized pot, heat the first amount of oil and then add the rice. Cook for about five minutes until the rice starts to emit a nutty-like aroma. Then add the water and salt. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut and prep all your vegetables and meat.

Then, in an 8-12 quart pot, heat the oil and butter together. Add the onion, celery and carrots. Sautée for several minutes until the vegetables soften. Add the bay leaves, turmeric salt and pepper.
Then add the sucuk. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring now and then.
Then, add the mushrooms, parsley and the flour. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes to cook out the starchy flavor.

Add the rice and any leftover water in the pot as well as the chicken stock and 1 container of Knorr condensed chicken stock. (I've never used this before, but Joyce did to add a richer flavor to her soup.)

Bring the soup to a boil and then let it simmer for about 30 minutes. The soup will slightly thicken from the roux. At the end, add the milk. Taste the soup and adjust any seasonings as needed.

Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with a mixed salad.

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Julia said...

Mmmm, how much do we love sucuk?! This soup looks great for the colder months. Really wholesome.

Joy said...

@Julia, hope you enjoy! I've been wanting to try your mantar borek recipe as well.

jaz@octoberfarm said...

glad that worked out for you! i love sucuk and can buy it at my regular grocery store. it is great that at least you can have sucuk to fill the pork gap! we got an inch of snow here today...woohoo!!!

Erica (Irene) said...

Yummmmm sucuk. We get sucuk here....we love it. Your recipe looks so good and hearty. Something if I make my Turk husband will inhale it all by himself. Rice and Sucuk.....for him that's all he needs.

Thansk for sharing you delicious recipe. :-)

Dolce Fooda said...

Love the dish that you made... Please make that bourek as soon as possible... I am still looking for the perfect recipe.
I am traveling to Europe this week and I can't wait to try all those goodies.

Joy said...

@jaz, thanks again for your recipe! With just a little tweaking, I think I can make just about anything here in Turkey. Well, maybe not pulled pork, but you know what I mean! ;-)

Joy said...

@Erica, I'm sure your Turkish husband will enjoy this recipe then. Afiyet olsun!

@Dolce Fooda, enjoy your trip! I will try and get on the borek recipe soon and post it here, of course.