Sopa de Ajo

Sopa de ajo

Yum.

This was so simple, so filling, and so so so delicious. It could probably be done in less time by starting with minced garlic, and by poaching the eggs in another pot while cooking the soup. However, I am physically incapable of successfully poaching an egg, and the thought of mincing an entire head of garlic was really unappealing to me. I was in no hurry, so I took my time. The total cooking time was about 45 minutes, but most of that time was hands-off.

Sopa de Ajo (with spinach)
(makes 2 main dish servings)

1 head of garlic, cloves separated and peeled
3 Tbsp olive oil
3-4 slices of stale bread (I used some leftover roasted garlic peasant bread)
1 Tbsp of smoked paprika
1/2 tsp of cumin
4 cups of chicken stock
1 box of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained (or fresh spinach, chopped)
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 400F

Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

Add the garlic cloves, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes. Do not let the garlic burn.

Remove the garlic from the oil and set aside.

Add the bread slices to the oil, toasting one side at a time until they are golden. This may have to be done in batches, depending on the size of the pan. Remove the bread and drain on paper towels. When slightly cooled, cut into cubes.

Mash the cooked garlic cloves, then return it to the pan. Add the smoked paprika and cumin. Stir over medium heat for about 30 seconds, until you can smell the spices.

Add the chicken broth and spinach and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the bread back to the pot, and continue to simmer for 5 more minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Set oven-proof bowls onto a baking sheet. Ladle the hot soup into the bowls. Crack an egg into each bowl.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, long enough so that the white is set but the yolk is still slightly runny.

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