Category Archives: Soups

Waste Not, Want Not: Hearty Meat & Potato Soup

Slurp it on up!

Slurp it on up!

Usually enriching refers to adding butter (often to a sauce or a stew) but I prefer to add nutrients. I also dislike waste. So whenever I have leftover veggie scraps, I pop them into a container in the freezer. And if I’m steaming or boiling veggies, I save the nutrient-rich water by pouring it over the frozen veggie scraps, and then popping the container back in the freezer. Once the container is full, I toss it in with a leeeetle bit of water, and boil the heck out of it. Then I get rid of the veggie solids, and use the remaining super-enriched-with-nutrients broth as the starting point for a soup or stew.

And that’s how we get to today’s recipe, Hearty Meat and Potato Soup! It’s like eating a meat-and-two-veg plate, but in soup form. Think BBQ’d hamburger with a side of potatoes and green beans. With a saucy sort of gravy. And then inject it with nutrients and call it a soup. Want some?

Hearty Meat and Potato Soup

  • 6 cups super-nutrient-dense homemade veggie stock
  • 2 hamburgers (I used the gardein veggie burgers), cut into eighths
  • a handful of frozen green beans
  • 10 baby potatoes, halved
  • handful of noodles
  • 1/4 c. tomato sauce
  • 1/4 of a single veggie bouillon cube

Dump it in a pot. Boil it up, until the potatoes are cooked through, and the noodles are soft. That’s it! Serve and enjoy the raves about the flavour!

Honestly, this is a super-tasty soup. I made it tonight, as I’m prepping meals for the week ahead, but wish it was time for dinner. I usually eat Greek yoghurt for supper (I have IBS issues and Greek Yoghurt for dinner works for me), but I’m looking forward to eating this tomorrow night instead! I think the reason the soup tastes so good is due in great part to the type of hamburger I used — the gardein beefless burger seems to have a whiff of smokey flavour, and that really makes the dish.

Like tree rings, only for dinner.

Like tree rings, only for dinner.

And the veggie stock I talked about? This is the base for my Kitchen Sink Soup. Which is basically, dump all frozen leftover veggies and veggie water in a pot, add in whatever leftovers are in the fridge, some noodles and rice and beans or what have you, and serve it up with some fresh bread and butter. Easy, economical, and healthy. Also, it’s never the same soup twice, which I love and the DH hates. But ha!ha! I cook, so I decide. Mwahaha! She who holds the ladle rules the world.

Next Post: More jelly, less waste! And wine. Always with the wine.

Easy Portuguese-Inspired Bean Soup with Kick!

Surprisingly flavourful for something so easy.

Surprisingly flavourful for something so easy.

I came up with this recipe last fall, when I was trying to use up the leftovers from my Pistol Packin’ Texas Caviar. I was majorly surprised at how delicious this turned out to be, and I strongly recommend that you all try it yourselves. It would be perfect on a crisp fall evening like today’s was, with a slice of fresh bread, and a slice of my Ultimate Caramel Apple Pie for dessert.

You can put this soup together in half an hour, from fridge to table, including chopping. Or, if you do the chopping when you make the salsa, you can put the soup together in 15 minutes. Not bad for a quick, homemade soup, huh? This soup also freezes well, and I’ve packed some in the fridge for lunches later this week, and frozen some for future lunches.

I’d pack it for the DH for his lunches, but he cannot stand the heat. So he’s not in my kitchen. *grin*

Let’s get soup-ifying!

Protein-filled veggie-filled broth. (Healthy is as healthy does!)

Protein-filled legumes…in veggie-filled broth. (Healthy is as healthy does!)

Portuguese-Inspired Bean Soup with Kick

  • 1/2 can black beans (or whatever you have lying around the house)
  • kernels from 1/4 cooked cob of corn
  • 2 hot finger peppers, diced, sans seeds
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 cube of veggie bouillion, equivalent to 2 cups bouillion
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/3 bunch cilantro, chopped

Saute onion and garlic in butter until caramelized. Crumble in veggie bouillion cube, and stir in 4 cups of water. Boil until bouillion is dissolved. Dump in rest of ingredients. Boil until heated through and flavours melded, about 10 minutes. Serve and enjoy the fresh flavour of the cilantro mixed with the heat of the peppers!

You could also add some celery, carrots, and sausage, for a more traditional Portuguese-style soup, but I have none of that in my fridge and I’m all about cooking with what I’ve got. If you do add anything else to the recipe, let me know in the comments! I’m always interested in variations!

Next Post: Triple Almond Sugar Cookies, so easy a 4-year-old could make them.

Linking up at Meal Plan Monday!

Autumnal Urges and Sweet Potato-Pear Soup

So pretty! And nutrient-rich!

So pretty! And nutrient-rich!

One of the doctors at the clinic where I work made a Pear and Sweet Potato Soup last fall, and liked it so much that she passed out the recipe to anyone who was interested. I took it and made it my own by cutting out the whipping cream and maple syrup and replacing the chicken stock with vegetable stock. And adjusting the veggie-fruit ratio to my tastes. And then adjusting the seasoning. Ok, so basically I remade the recipe. But it’s healthier now!

I really think it tastes like Thanksgiving in a Bowl. And it’s delicious. It freezes well, too. I make it at least twice a month, because it’s nice for lunches for me (fibre, yay!) and the DH likes it for a quick dinner after a long work day. I make it ahead and then stick it in the fridge or freezer and he can quickly microwave it if I’m not home yet.

It’s also perfect because fall is approaching rapidly and nourishing and tasty soups are a great way to appreciate autumn bounty. I made this last batch with local Ontario-grown pears and knowing that I was supporting family farms made me feel extra cozy.

Enough talking, bring on the soup!

Sweet Potato and Pear Soup

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 average to large-sized sweet potatoes
  • 3-4 large Barlett pears, or a whole bunch of small ones
  • 2 tbsps. Butter
  • ¾ tsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 4-5 c. vegetable stock (choose one that’s MSG free)

Prick sweet potatoes all over with a fork and microwave on a potato setting until juices bubble out of the fork piercings. Saute onion and garlic in butter in a large soup pot until translucent. Core pears and dump into soup pot, along with the scooped out flesh of the sweet potatoes. Saute until you start to see the pears get a bit sautéed as well. Add in thyme and paprika. Add in vegetable stock and simmer on medium heat for about 20 minutes or until pears are cooked through. Blend with a hand blender while hot, or wait until cool and puree in blender. Garnish with a swirl of cream if you’re ritzy or just eat with a nice salad or hunk of fresh bread. Feel wholesome and nourished.

Fall flavour in a pot.

Fall flavour in a pot.

Pro Tip: Peel garlic easily by cutting the ends of each clove off. The rest will peel off like magic.

Pro Tip # 2: Don’t puree the soup in a blender when hot. I learned this lesson the hard way. The DH was talking on the phone to his mom when I was making soup one time and both he and she were rather startled to hear me start shrieking in my version of swear words (“Bloody hell!” And my personal favourite: “Oh SUGAR!”) I had pureed the soup while hot and the blender had erupted. The soup not only burned me, but splattered most of the kitchen. I was finding dried orange splatters in odd places for days. Not the best way to impress your mother-in-law.

A wholesome epicurean delight.

A wholesome epicurean delight.

Anyway, make this soup! It really is good. But make sure to use a strong vegetable stock, as that’s key to making it taste like a finely nuanced soup as opposed to blandish baby food. And let me know in the comments what vegetable stock you recommend! I’m always on the look-out for a tasty, healthy version.

Next Post: When Cravings Attack. Or, Easy Midnight Munchies.