I'm doing a soup swap with some friends this week. We're each making a huge batch of soup then dividing it into 5 large portions. We keep one batch for ourselves then when we meet up this week, we all trade our other 4 batches. The idea is that you cook once, but end up with 5 different types of soup for the freezer. As I type I've got two large pots simmering away on the stove.
I love soup. Love all different types. Ever heard of Apple and Parsnip soup? It's amazing. So is Curried Butternut Squash soup.
For me, part of the joy of soup is the making of it. I love the process of taking a bunch of fresh vegetables, chopping them up, sauteing garlic and onions in EVOO, tossing the veggies in, along with some broth, and letting it simmer away.
By far, my favorite soup to make is Fresh Vegetable Soup. I found a great recipe in Cooking Light years ago and I've been making it ever since. Of course, I've added my own little changes. Whenever I make vegetable soup, this is always the version I make. Although I pretty much know how to make it from memory, I still rely on the recipe just to make sure. When I went to find the recipe a few days ago, it was nowhere to be found. I looked high and low to no avail. Did tons of internet searches to find it, but still couldn't come up with the exact one. I was all prepared to just wing it and do it from memory, but decided to make one last attempt and finding it and thankfully it was found, just stuck in between some random cookbooks.
I'm now posing it here so I'll forever have it. No more searching high and low.
The recipe is more of a guide, as all the vegetables listed can be substituted with whatever you have fresh on hand. Thanks to my CSA box, I had a lot of nice goodies to work with. If you have no potatoes on hand, substitute some dried macaroni. To make it even more hearty, add some shredded cooked chicken or ground beef.
Fresh Vegetable Soup
2 Tbs. Olive Oil
2 C. Chopped Onion
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 C. Chopped Celery (about 4 stalks)
2 C. cut green beans
1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels
1 C thinly sliced carrot
1 cup. frozen baby lima beans
1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
1 1/2 cup. peeled and chopped potato
3 teaspoons dried Italian seasonings
4 (14 1/4 ounce) cans organic beef broth or vegetable broth for a vegetarian version
1 (15 oz.) can kidney beans, drained
2 cups chopped seeded tomato
2 cups crushed tomatoes
2 teaspoons sugar to cut the acidity of the tomatoes
2 cups shredded green cabbage
salt to taste
pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese for topping
1. Heat oil in a large pot over med. heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté for 2 min. Stir in celery and next ingredients through tomatoes. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for at least 30 min.
Add cabbage salt and pepper, cook 5 min. or until cabbage wilts. Serve with cheese.