Creativity Cooks

Collage ~ Cooking ~ Creativity … inspired by three generations of women

Soups On!

on 10/05/2012

Go ahead, you can do it. Make a big pot of vegetable soup. You know you can and you know how delicious it will be! Remember the vegetable soup of our childhood? It came in a can, and we thought it was good. Well, some of us did, especially if it was sided with a sandwich we loved. I remember how canned vegetable soup tasted and I didn’t like it. Tinny, a bit sour and way, way too salty. Mushy cubed vegetables, like the frozen mixed that if we were lucky got tossed with some salt and pepper and a bit of butter before clumping into a bowl for the table. But they were colorful, weren’t they…even if the cubes were the picture of conformity. Hmm, even our vegetables were forced to conform. Sounds like an unsavory plot to me.

Let’s go shopping for the fresh organics, here’s your list:

1 bag carrots (1 lb.), 2 large, sweet onions, 1 pkg. celery, 1/2 lb. fresh green beans, 2 med. zucchini and a small bunch of parsley or even cilantro would do nicely. You will need 4 plum tomatoes (or you can used Pomm diced – just half the package or less). And a small knob of ginger.

Have some garlic? 2 or 3 large cloves will do. Is there Turmeric in your spice cabinet? How about Cumin, Paprika, Cinnamon (did she say Cinnamon)? Good… I am sure you have some olive oil, sea salt and fresh pepper to grind. Excellent…

Take that dutch oven or big soup pot and dust it off. Chop those two onions to a medium dice, slice the celery in 1/4″ bits (use 2/3 of what you bought – no, it’s not too much…) and put that into the pot with enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pot and then just a bit more. Turn the heat to medium and put a lid on it. Check after a few minutes to see they don’t brown, turn down the heat a bit if need be. Pots and stoves are all different, don’t burn or brown your veggies!

Take the whole bag of carrots and peel, snip off the ends and rinse. Chop them into 1/2″ bits, you can cut rounds or halve the carrots and cut them. Not too big, not too small. Pop them in with the simmering onions and celery, stir, put the lid back on. Clean up the mess you made from the prep so far and then check the veggies. Chop the plum tomatoes if that’s what you are using. Add water to cover and then some, about an inch more. Add the tomatoes. No need to measure. Add 2 tsp. sea salt, 1 tsp. Paprika, 1 tsp. Turmeric and 1 tsp. Cumin. Stir, turn the heat up a bit to get it going (a steady simmer) and put the lid back on.

Rinse and prep the green beans and zucchini – snip off the ends and cut into nice sized pieces, set them aside for now as these two veggies cook quickly so they go in last. Peel a 1/2″ piece of ginger for grating.

By now the soup should be a-bubblin’… turn the heat down, low on gas and #2 on electric stoves. Set the time for half an hour. When it dings, stir in the green beans and zucchini in and grate the ginger into the whole mix, cover. Set the timer for another half hour. When it dings, stir again and taste it. If it needs a bit more salt, add it. Grind into it some pepper, a few healthy turns is good. Now, add a pinch of Cinnamon. Yes, Cinnamon. Stir… wait… stir again… taste. Can you feel the warmth of those spices?

Mmmm, I bet you can.

You have made a wonderful soup! This is a very low fat and low carb soup too, that can be ‘beefed’ up, so to speak. You can easily add cooked grains to this, for a heartier version. You could grate some good cheddar on top! You could add cooked beans or potatoes (I recommend cooking 5 or 6 red bliss potatoes at the beginning of the week to keep – after they cool – in a bowl in the frig – it makes for easy hash browns, or rough mashed) ~ red bliss or sweet/yams work very well!

This delicious accomplishment also freezes very well (without the potatoes) ~ which is why we made such a nice, big pot! Portion it out to your convenience. 

This is making me hungry…..

 

 

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