Garlic Soup and Blogging Etiquette

The last week has been all about learning new things related to the wide world of blogging. I’ve learned how to use my computer for more than looking up online news and sending emails. I’m in the process of re-learning how to use a SLR camera.  Most importantly, I’m learning the ins and outs of blogging etiquette.

Blogging is more than simply lobbing out your poetic thoughts and words of wisdom for all the world to see. Blogging, especially blogging that involves recipes, requires that a few rules be followed.

This occurred to me when I thought about recipes that I would like to share from favourite cookbooks, magazines and even other blogs. Was I allowed to reproduce a recipe from another source? Are recipes copyrighted? How do you properly credit another recipe author?

After a bit of searching I have discovered the 3 Golden Rules of Recipe Blogging. They are:

1. Always credit your source. Whether a recipe is adapted from, inspired by or is even an exact replica of an existing recipe, it is always cool to credit the recipe’s author. Recipe theft, it seems, is rampant on blogs.

2. Always link to your source. Link to the author’s personal site, the publisher’s website and/or the cookbook’s location on Amazon.

3. Never copy a recipe word for word or cut and paste recipes from another site.  Even if you have followed a recipe to the letter and want to share it that way, post it in your own words. At the very least it shows that you actually cooked the recipe and allows for a consistent and “authentic” voice on your site.

Armed with my newfound knowledge I am ready to post my first recipe. Fittingly, it comes from one of the first sites I ever visited called 101 Cookbooks by the very talented photographer, writer and cookbook author Heidi Swanson.

The recipe is for garlic soup which Heidi has adapted from a recipe by the estimable Richard Olney. The link is here. I have adapted Heidi’s adaptation with the addition of roasted garlic, pureeing the soup for a more refined texture and using the rinds of parmesan cheese for flavouring the soup. Whew, here it is.

Garlic Soup
This seems like the perfect soup for after the holidays. It has simple ingredients that you should have on hand and is rich tasting without the addition of cream. As we go through a lot of Parmesan cheese at our house I always save the rinds and put them in the freezer in a bag for whenever I need to boost the flavour of a soup or stew. If you don’t have a Parmesan rind on hand just add 1/3 of a cup of grated Parmesan cheese to the egg mixture.

1 medium head of garlic, left whole with 1/2″ sliced off the top
2 teaspoon olive oil

4 cups of water
1 bay leaf
1 sprig of thyme
1 medium head of garlic, cloves separated, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 large or 2 small parmesan cheese rinds (or 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese to be added to the egg mixture below)

1 whole egg
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup olive oil
freshly ground pepper

Crusty day old bread and grated Parmesan to sprinkle on top of each bowl (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Place the head of garlic that has the 1/2″ sliced off the top in a small oven-proof dish and pour the 2 teaspoons of olive oil on top. Season with salt and pepper and cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes until the cloves are tender. When cool enough to handle squeeze softened cloves from the head and place in the bowl of a blender.

Meanwhile, bring the 4 cups of water to a boil and add the bay leaf, thyme sprig, chopped head of garlic, the salt and the rind of Parmesan if using. Turn down the heat and allow to simmer gently for 40 minutes.

Remove Parmesan rind, bay leaf and thyme sprig from soup base. Working in batches add half of the garlic broth to the bowl of the blender which contains the roasted garlic and blend well. Once blended, pour through a fine mesh sieve into a clean pot.

In a separate bowl whisk together the whole egg and two egg yolks with a whisk. Slowly add the olive oil to build up an emulsion and season with freshly ground pepper. Add 1/3 cup of Parmesan if you didn’t add the Parmesan rinds to the broth.

Very slowly ladle one scoop (bit by bit) of the hot broth into the egg mixture, whisking continuously.  Do this slowly so that you don’t end up with scrambled eggs in soup! Once incorporated add the lightened egg mixture back into the remaining garlic broth. Check and adjust seasonings. Over medium-low heat continue whisking until the broth just begins to thicken. The texture should be similar to half and half and should take about 5 minutes.

In each serving bowl place some of the crusty bread, ladle the soup over and sprinkle with Parmesan.

Makes about 4 cups.
Printable recipe

This recipe was adapted from Heidi Swanson at 101 Cookbooks who adapted it from Richard Olney’s The French Menu Cookbook.

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One Response to Garlic Soup and Blogging Etiquette

  1. Lori Kenney says:

    Hi Julie, this soup sounds delicious……I was looking for a contact link, so am using this. I ran into Glen at Smallville last week. He informed me you still had the Angel Alter hanging in your home.
    He told me about your blog. I have become a bit of a foody myself in between art and jewelry creating. Three years ago I moved over to the Comox Valley with my partner who was living in Victoria… devote myself to a healthier lifestyle and my Art work. We are creating a huge organic garden……and are growing several varieties of garlic….I will definately try out this recipe, as we eat a lot of garlic…We sold quite a bit at the local farmer’s market……there is a lot to learn about growing
    yummy fruit and veggies, and a lot of hard work. I am hoping I can add you to my contact list for upcoming exhibitions, as I am having a show of paintings in Vancouver in the end of April. Your blog looks clean, beautiful and inviting. I just made a wonderful leek, parsnip and carrot soup. with leeks, garlic, parsnips, just picked from the garden….I keep experimenting to get the taste just right. Eventually we will have a website for our farm/nursery…I will let you know when that happens.Hope you are well and enjoying these first teaser days of spring…..Lori

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