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Green Olive Soup

2 cups pitted green olives
3 tb olive oil (from the jar of olives if they're in oil, not brine)
1/2 medium onion, peeled and sliced
4 cups chicken stock
1 c whipping cream or evaporated milk
3 tb olive oil (see above)
6 tb flour
Freshly ground black pepper
4 dashes Tabasco
1/3 c dry sherry

Sliced pimiento-stuffed green olives
Garlic bread croutons

Soak the olives in cold water for 1 hour. Drain and coarsely chop.
Heat a frying pan and add the 3 tablespoons olive oil, the onion
and garlic, along with 2/3 of the olives. Saute until the onion
is transparent. Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor
with 1 cup of the chicken stock.

In a 4-qt saucepan, combine the puree mixture with the remaining
stock. Simmer for 20 minutes and add the cream. In a small frying
pan make a roux with the remaining 3 tb olive oil and flour. Stir
the roux into the soup, stirring constantly, until thickened. Add
black pepper to taste, the remaining chopped olives, the Tabasco,
and sherry. Heat to serving temperature and serve with the sliced
olives and crouton garnish.

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