I have considered Carla Lalli Music my food mom since I first laid eyes on her in the Bon Appetit YouTube videos. She has responded to me on Instagram no fewer than four times. It’s safe to say that she fully loves me as much as I love her, and not only is she my food mom but she is now my real mom. In Carla’s book Where Cooking Begins, she shares her mother’s recipe for pasta fagioli. It is a very great recipe which I have made countless times. If you’ve ever eaten my pasta fagioli it was Carla’s pasta fagioli which is Carla’s mom’s (AKA my grandmother) pasta fagioli. This recipe is essentially me riffing on that recipe. It has all the best parts of pasta fagioli minus the fagioli sub potato. Starch + Carb = <3
A few months ago, I started receiving biweekly egg deliveries from my friends at John-Paul’s Farm. It is so incredibly convenient. Every other Thursday they drop off two dozen eggs at my house, and I always have the freshest, most delicious eggs available. It has changed my egg life. A few weeks ago, they offered 25-pound bags of potatoes and I got a bag of fingerlings dropped off with my egg delivery. And as if my pantry situation needed to be any better, I leveled up in an instant. I highly recommend keeping a large bag of potatoes in a cold dark corner of your house. This is all to say that this soup is extremely easy to make, and if you keep a stocked kitchen, you will likely already have everything you need to make it. It is low maintenance and pays off big time in flavor. You don’t need eggs. There are no eggs in this soup. I just really love eggs.
Tomato Potato Soup
8-10 garlic cloves
4 Tbsp. olive oil
2 bay leaves
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 Tbsp. red pepper flake
2 28-oz. cans whole peeled tomatoes
2 lbs. fingerling potatoes
6 cups beef broth
3 handfuls chopped kale
2 cups ditalini
In a food processor, pulse the carrots and garlic into pea-sized pieces. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven on medium-low heat. Add carrots, garlic, and bay leaves. Salt and sweat the mixture until it has reduced in size by half, 15-20 minutes. If it starts to stick, reduce heat and add more olive oil. Add tomato paste and red pepper flake. Stir to incorporate. Add tomatoes and break them up using your hands or a spoon. Add potatoes and broth. Bring to a boil and add kale. Reduce heat and simmer until the potatoes are cooked through. Turn off heat. Salt to taste. In a separate pot of salted water, boil two cups of ditalini until al dente and add them to the soup. Garnish soup with basil or parsley, red pepper flake, parmesan cheese, and more olive oil.
Reducing the carrot and garlic mixture is absolutely crucial to the end result of this soup. Don’t skip it or underdo it.
You can use whatever kind of potatoes you want.
You can use any kind of small pasta you want, but ditalini is the best choice.
You can use vegetable broth if you’d like to make it vegetarian.
The following paragraph was written on Friday
I should have known better than to try to write a newsletter on the same day a new Taylor Swift album comes out. Obviously, this is all I want to talk about now. If you don’t know that I am the number one Swiftie, you don’t know me well enough yet. It is currently 11:56AM on Friday and I am on my fourth listen through of Midnights. Every time she comes out with something new, I have to fully immerse myself for days before I can reach my opinion. Ultimately, my opinion always ends up being that I love it and she’s a fucking genius. Say whatever you want about Taylor Swift, but you better not say anything negative or else you’ll be asked to leave my house. Say whatever you want about Taylor Swift, but it is undeniable that she is outrageously talented. This album is giving Some Nights/Billie Eilish vibes and I’m fine with that. I have a very soft romantic place in my heart for Some Nights and everything that Jack Antonoff does.
Now that I have had five days to listen to Midnights, I’ve listened to it nearly 30 times and I love it. I’ll probably listen to it exclusively until Red (Taylor’s Version) drops.
Last night, brothmachine had it’s maiden voyage. It was absolutely insane. If you came out and stood in line, thank you so so so much. If you didn’t, thank you so so so much. I love you all in the deepest depths of my heart and your support is everything to me. I feel incredibly lucky. I would not have such a rad life if it weren’t for all of you. I wish I could get you exactly what you wanted for Christmas. Send me your Christmas list. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I obviously meant 1989 (Taylor's Version)