Souped Up

A hearty fish stew from the Soupbox cookbook

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Our problem with The Soupbox Cookbook? Each recipe sounds better than the next–especially at this time of year.

The Chicago lunchtime legend, whose two locations each ladle out a dozen fresh soups daily, has become known over the past 15-plus years for its healthful creations. And its new collection of more than 100 recipes ($27) is a testament to that.

You'll find everything from vegetable-based bowls of goodness, like the white-bean-and-escarole soup, to wholesome poultry numbers, such as healthy rosemary-chicken dumpling, to substantial stews, including a Persian lamb-and-spinach version. The final chapter details four easy-to-make stocks–vegetable, chicken, fish and beef–to ensure that each recipe has maximum flavor.

Our Test Kitchen whipped up the book's Spicy African Fish Stew (see the recipe), redolent with harissa, cumin, turmeric and a pinch of saffron. Chopped dried apricots add texture and sweetness; the dish would make for a hearty lunch, but is elegant and complex enough to serve at dinner.

We're bowled over.

What's your favorite winter vegetable? Tweet your answer to @TastingTableGT today for a chance to win a copy of one of our favorite 2012 cookbooks, Ripe. One winner will be announced today at 5 p.m. EST.