Posts Tagged ‘soup’

Saint Patrick’s Day is over, but that’s no reason not to cook up this delicious and uber-nutritious “green soup.” This is not The Splendid Table’s recipe, but like Lynne’s, it does require an immersion blender to get the right consistency. Feel free to add more veggies to your liking!

Miranda’s Green Soup from Pocket Pause

  • 1/2 head cauliflower
  • 1 leek
  • 1 potato or turnip
  • Pinch dried or fresh rosemary
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • salt/pepper
  • 1 dried cayenne pepper
  • 1 pint condensed chicken stock + 3 pints water or 1 quart regular strength stock
  • 1 bunch kale (or chard)
  • splash lemon juice

Coursely chop all the veggies. Saute the leek with a bit of butter until dark green and softening, then add the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a boil then cover and simmer until all veggies are soft (20 minutes to an hour). You can’t overcook it. Blend with your immersion blender to smooth out the soup and get that nice creamy consistency without the cream!

Serve in a nice large bowl with a dollup of yogurt and maybe some shredded mozz. Seen with some sausage added to the top, because i was feeling sausagey for some reason this night.

Really warms the soul and is a great dose of leafy green veggies when it’s too chilly outside for salad!

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It’s the first of our Challenge in a Challenge weeks! This week and next we (mostly) learned about one-pot meals. Soups, stews, cassoulet, and casseroles! One pot meals may or may not be created in only one pot, but they seem to all be warm and comforting, perfect for this time of year.


MNLocavore has a very important post to read, all thoughts of actual recipes aside. She brings up the theme that comes up again and again–local food is still an urban, and largely middle class, phenomenon. Even highly motivated, educated rural, small town, and suburban eaters will struggle with this. Even farm families will struggle with this. The larger food system simply does not support locally sourced food, and the barriers to small merchants providing this sort of food are enormous. Read it. Then think about what you can do to help make a change.  Her one-pot post (pea soup) is here as well, and again, well worth the read.

Sanborn Sanctuary, which actually does appear to be a farm that has managed to meet our criteria made a scrumptious looking “overcooked ham” and some split pea soup. I’d love to hear more about local food issues among farms in their area! The internet-wide conspiracy to get me to make noodles is afoot, with Rubus Raspberry (note the new URL and the stylish new look!) making chicken alfredo with, yes, homemade pasta. Our Happy Acres made a one pot meal (chili) and some sweet potato gnocchi, which look amazing. (Also– is it my imagination, or did you grind your own flour?).

Lotta folks missing in action! As soon as you dig out, send us some recipes!


This week’s ‘one pot meal’ challenge didn’t stop Methylgrace from using just about every pot in her house, it seems! I love how she turns a simple soup into a day long affair with an arsenal of pots, pans, cookie sheets, cooking methods and culinary magic. I’m also jealous that she had chicken feet in her stock. Some might cringe at the idea of boiling up chicken feet for consumption, but they have some of the most concentrated gelatin and tons of other healthful properties.  Farming mom made one of my favorite one pot meals: fritatta. She used her yard eggs and a bunch of other delicious homegrown and/or locally sourced ingredients. Her hubs may have coined the meal ‘egg pizza’ but she and i know fritatta is much better for you than most any pizza could be. She baked her fritatta in a cast iron pan and made a ‘crust’ of sorts of potatoes: a technique i usually use too! I just got some cast iron for Christmas, so i’ll try my next ‘egg pizza’ in cast iron! Bee Creative had a nice wander in some enchanting snow and supped on some tasty garden-soup for lunch. Snow definitely makes soup taste that much better!



Not From a Box’s Teresa is detoxing for the next couple weeks so her entry in the challenge is a very austere beet and roasted garlic soup from Whole Living. It sounds so good and I have all the ingredients on hand, I’m making this as I type!

Julie from D.I. Wine and Dine made something I could also relish–a vegan curried vegetable pot pie–yum! She loves the ability to pan fry or bake in her cast iron skillet and decided for the challenge to do both. Most of her ingredients were local, except of course the coconut milk that makes the dish vegan. She wonders–does anyone know if coconut milk or dairy has more of an environmental impact?

Over at Stoney Acres, Rick has been exploring potato recipes, with a Baked Potato Soup and Baked Potatoes Stromboli, for which he graciously shares the family dough recipe. He says in general they are having trouble sourcing local pasta and meat. But for this meal was able to use 100% local ingredients. These sound like satisfying meals for winter days!

Toni from Itsjusttoni’s decided to make a family favorite—Potatoes and Cheese—using many homegrown SOLE ingredients instead of a box mix they have used in the past. She’s amazed at the selection of local cheeses she can find in Mexico, which sound mouth-watering. You know the resulting dish was a triumph when someone asks “is there leftovers?”

Lynda over at Cortina Creek Farms made a wonderful Chicken and Failed Dumplings A’ La Lynda Lou out of an “ornery old bastard that wouldn’t quit bothering the hens.” Although I’m a vegetarian, I (Sage) may be sending Lynda a couple of my roosters to re-educate! And in my opinion having too many dumplings is not a failure Lynda!


Jennifer here, bringing lots of news from the “Midwest” group. I’ve got a few one-potters to share that sound super nourishing, and some meals that just look darn good. This week I’m starting with Dog Hill Kitchen who ladled a gorgeous bowl of Sausage and Greens Soup. She even included her homemade apple and anise sausage! If you have the chance, you should check out her walk-through of making sausages. Small Wonder Farm keeps on impressing me that she can pull off so many local meals considering the number of allergies she has to work around. Her one-dish meal was a beef pot roast with carrots, potatoes, and garlic (mmm, garlic!), and served with peaches straight of the canning jar. Not to be outdone, the previous day she served up another local meal with one of my favorite dishes: German Potato Salad. If any of you are familiar with Shapiro’s Deli in Indianapolis and the recipe they use, head over to Small Wonder Farm and give her some advice. 20-Something Allergies also has a lot to contend with but she still manages to pull it off with a well-rounded meal. Roasted chicken was prepared to optimal crispy skin deliciousness. But it gets better: brussel sprouts, green beans, and potatoes each prepared with duck fat were served as sides.

The Local Cook has been working on a Back to Basics series on her blog, but she still has time to cook up a really great looking dish. Lamb steaks were plated with collards cooked in garlic and served with a baked potato and herbed butter. She makes a good point about cooking locally, “start where you are” and use what local ingredients you have access to. Lastly is Mother’s Kitchen – serving up her week 7 meal. Not only did Cynthia get my attention with her lemon-y whitefish, but she served it with pickled brussel sprouts (say what?!) and Potatoes Anna. Now I know my goal for this week: to find local fish!


Next week the “East” Contributors will be sharing the results of their One-Dish Meal. To stay current with other challenges be sure to visit the Dark Days tab at the top of the blog.

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Tuesdays will be our recipe day during the Real Food Challenge. Check back each week, there might be one recipe there might be three.


When I was a little girl, one of my favorite stories was one called Nail Soup (also known as Stone Soup). It’s a traditional Swedish folk tale, here it is in my words as I remember.

There once was a traveler that came to a small village carrying nothing but the ragged clothes on his back and bent rusty nail. The villagers tried to run him out of town saying that he was going to steal from them. “Oh no, I was coming to share some nail soup with you. All I need is a pot filled with water and I’ll make some soup to be enjoyed by all,” he said. One curious villager brought him a pot filled with water.

The traveler built a fire and got his rusty nail out of his pocket and dropped it in the pot. Soon the villagers started gathering around to see what nail soup was. After a while, the traveler tasted the soup and said, “If only I had some onions, that would really make the soup wonderful.” One of the villagers ran to grab a couple of onions. After adding the onions and cooking the soup for a while, he tasted it again and said, “If I only had a few carrots and maybe some peas, then the soup would be so much better.” Another villager ran to get a few carrots and another got some peas.

The stranger kept tasting the soup and each time he’d mention something else that would make the soup “just right” and each time a villager would run and get that item for the soup. After a while the pot was bubbling with the best smelling soup the villagers had ever smelled.

The traveler fished out his nail, wrapped it in a handkerchief and put it back in his pocket. Then he served up the stew to all the villagers, it was the most wonderful stew they had ever tasted. They were very impressed with the Nail Soup, although they could never replicate the recipe themselves.

Here’s another version of the story if you’re interested.

Nail soup is a staple in the winter here at Chiot’s Run. My version is a simple soup made with all the things I have that need used up from the freezer and pantry. I thawed a venison steak and then proceeded to check in my freezer for anything else that needed used. It’s different every time I make it depending on what needs used up. Usually it contains vegetables like: tomatoes, potatoes, corn, grated zucchini, peas, etc, whatever I find in the freezer that sounds like it will go well in the soup. I also use some fresh ingredients like onions and garlic. I keep adding things as I find them, and pretty soon it was smelling quite delicious. After cooking in a pot for a few hours, I added a jar of my homecanned tomato soup and a few dried herbs from the garden to finish it off. It made for a lovely dinner with a side of freshly baked whole wheat bread.

One of the beautiful things about this soup is that you can customize it for you family’s tastes. You can make it differently each week. One week perhaps it’s more of an Italian nail soup with tomatoes, oregano, and lots of garlic. Maybe the next week it will contain sausage, lentils and carrots. Perhaps one week it will have beef and that half bag of noodles from the pantry. Don’t be afraid to experiment, this is how some of my most delicious soups have come about. I’ve developed recipes that I make over and over again.

I searched on-line trying to find the copy of the Nail Soup I had as a child, I think it may have been This One. This version of Nail Soup is updated and looks great as well. If you’re ever looking for a great children’s book to give someone, I’d highly recommend finding a copy of nail soup.

Did you have a story that you loved as a child?

I can also be found at Chiot’s Run where I blog daily about gardening, cooking, local eating, beekeeping, and all kinds of stuff. You can also find me at Simple, Green, Frugal, Co-op, and you can follow me on Twitter.

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Sometimes its just nice to get everything done early in the day so you can go out and play in the garden without having to back in the house to check on things all the time.

That is where my slow cooker comes in…

Yesterday I made a batch of red lentil/cabbage soup that we love.  I put it on about noon and it was perfectly ready for dinner!  I spent the whole afternoon in the garden hauling gravel and spreading straw…


10 Cups of broth…I used homemade veggie broth but any good strong broth will do

1 large onion (I always use sweet onions)

3 cloves of garlic minced

1/2 bunch celery chopped

5 (or so) large carrots chopped

1 Cup Chopped Cabbage

Olive Oil

3 Cups red lentils

Saute onion,garlic celery,carrots, and cabbage in olive oil for about 5 minutes

Put veggies into slow cooker with broth and red lentils, stir.

Cover and cook until done (this will depend on your slow cooker mine was 3 hrs) but your lentils should be soft

We usually serve this with baked rice…most of the time over the top of baked rice!

*You can vary your vegetable varieties as well as amounts of veggies…very flexible recipe

*The rule of thumb for Red Lentils is 1 Cup lentils for every 3 1/2 cups Liquid

*A few cumin seeds are great in this

*Any other green works too…we have used collard, chard, and spinach with good results

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It is easy to incorporate whole grains in baked goods.  This month I have been trying to use them in more creative ways.  Here is a recipe I tried this week that my family just loved!  But what’s not to love about barley in soup?

1 Onion, chopped

4 stalks Celery, diced

1 Cup of chopped greens (we used spinach)

3 cloves Garlic, minced

1/2 pound fresh mushrooms sliced


1/4 Soy Sauce

1/2 Cup Organic hulled Barley


In large pot combine the onion, celery, garlic and mushrooms and saute in oil for 5 minutes.  Add barley and soy sauce, and 5 Cups of Water.

Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 to 3 hours.  Salt to taste, Pepper too if you like!

Serve with a good homemade crusty bread…yum!

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Lebanese Lentil with Greens Soup

This is what we had for dinner last night with fresh bread…it was delicious.

In fact I also had it for breakfast too!


1 Large Onion Chopped

4 Cloves Garlic minced

1 Tbsp Salt

1 Cup Lentils (I used a combo or red and brown)

6 Cups Water

1 Bunch Greens (I used Swiss Chard) stemmed and thinly sliced

1 Tbsp Cumin

1 tsp Cinnamon (yes, really!)

1/3 Cup Lemon Juice

Olive Oil

Saute Onion and Garlic in Olive Oil in the bottom of a large saucepan until slightly soft.  Add lentils and cook for 1 minute.  Add Water and salt.  Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a gentle simmer.  Cook until the lentils are tender (15 minutes or so)

While the lentils are simmering.  In a large skillet saute the greens in olive oil until they are wilted.

When the lentils are tender add the greens, the cumin and cinnamon.  Simmer 10 minutes.

Add lemon juice before serving.

This was a great quick soup for a chilly February night.  The flavor was so fresh and unusual with the cinnamon.  My kids loved it.  My hubby liked the flavor but hates greens so he picked his out, lol!

Great change of pace…will definately add this to my ‘go to’ list of soups!

Recipe modified from a recipe found on All Recipes

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Yes I make it vegan but you don’t have too…but you could!

1 Large sweet onion chopped (you could use regular but my family likes sweet onions)

5+ cloves of garlic minced (I usually do 8 or so, but we loooove garlic!)

Enough olive oil to coat the bottom of a large stock pot that will cook the whole batch of chili

Saute in olive oil until the onions and garlic  have started to soften (5 minutes or so)

Add a quart of home canned tomatoes (or large 28 oz from store) don’t drain

Add 1/4 to 1/3 Cup of tomato paste (I need to learn to make this!)

Now here is where you can get experimental with spices…these are just approximations of what I add.

4 TBSP Chili Powder

1 TBSP Cumin (sometimes more)

2 tsp Oregeno

Fresh Ground Pepper to taste

Salt to taste depending on how ya like it!

3 Cups or so of Water or 1 1/2 Cups water and 1 1/2 Cups Homemade Vegetable broth

Bring this all to a boil, reduce and simmer until it starts to thicken 25 – 3o minutes

Then your gonna add…

2 Cups precooked or canned drained Kidney beans

2 Cups precooked or canned drained Black Beans

2 Cups precooked or canned drained Pinto Beans

Now you can use any combo of beans…they all rock…well except Lima Beans which I hate, but that is my issue not yours…

2 – 3 Cups corn (fresh or frozen…suppose canned would work too, but I don’t use canned corn so I’m guessing here)

Simmer another 20 minutes are so…until all the ingredients have all gotten nice and friendly with each other.  Adjust the seasonings to your liking.

Serve with fresh cornbread or with crumbled tortilla chips.  Or better yet pour it over hot brown rice…my oh my!

You won’t miss the meat…seriously you won’t!

Oh! I almost forgot to mention…this is outstanding with bell peppers chopped and cooked up with the onions and garlic but alas my family hates cooked peppers!  What’s with that???


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Cream of Baked Potato Soup


There were two things hubby requested when I decided to go vegan…he could not live without icecream and he begged that I please not quit making this soup!  There is still icecream in the freezer and I made this last night!

I will admit right here and now that I do not like boiled potatoes.  I don’t like the process of peeling, boiling, cutting, and I don’t really like the taste or texture very much when they are done.  I much prefer baked potatoes, they are easier to prepare, can be made ahead and most of all I like the texture and flavor much better.  So with that in mind I am going to share with you a very easy but heartily delicious recipe for my cream of BAKED potato soup!

You will need:    

1 large sweet onion chopped (you could use a regular onion if you prefer, I just happen to love sweet onions!)

6 TBSP Butter(I always use real salted butter, the richness it adds to this cannot be matched by margarine)

4 TBSP White Flour

1 tsp Salt  ( to begin with, salt to taste after that)

White Pepper (you could also use black course ground

6 Cups Milk (non-fat, 1%, 2%, whole…it completely up to you, I used 1% this time because that is what I had on hand)

6 – 8 pounds potatoes baked and cooled


  First melt butter in large pot, add onions and cook until soft


While onions are cooking peel and chop potatoes

Note:  if you like peelings in your soup make sure to rub your potatoes with oil before baking, then chop the peeling up along with your potatoes and add up to 1/2 of them…this is the way I like it but have picky children who think peelings in soup are “icky”!


Ohhhh I do love potatoes!!!!!!!!!!!


After you onions are soft add 4 TBSP White Flour, 1 tsp salt, and pepper to taste, cook and stir over low heat for a couple of minutes to make sure the flour cooks and doesn’t have that ‘floury’ taste…


Add your milk and cook over low heat until it becomes thick and bubbly

Then add your potatoes and heat through, salt and pepper to perfection, and…


You get a scrumptiously yummy, hearty and delicious soup that your family will praise and adore you for.  They might even volunteer to do the dishes and clean the kitchen after they are done licking their bowls…then again this is just soup, not a miracle in a pot!!!

Now for the kicker…are you ready? 

This was just the master recipe that I just shared with you…you can all get a little wild and crazy with it!   How about…

Mushrooms!  Add sliced mushrooms to the onions at the beginning and you get Cream of BAKED Potato and MUSHROOM soup….ohhh I can’t even tell you how much I love this one!

Cheese! Add 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese to the sauce before adding the potatoes and voila, you have Cream of BAKED potato and cheddar soup…can’t you just imagine?  My knees go weak just thinking about it!

Cheesy Cheese! Add 1 cup shredded Cheddar and…hold onto your hats…one cup shredded Swiss Cheese to the sauce.  This is for you that like to walk on the wild side!

The ways you can adorn this are also amazing, try these topping on for size…

How about a dollop of sour cream?  Maybe some shredded cheese or chopped green onions?  Ohhh I know, for you carnivores some crumbled bacon might be nice…steamed broccoli would be yummy for us vegetarians…just about anything you can put on a baked potato you can put on the top of a bowl of this soup!

This is seriously good and so easy it is almost cheating…so if you want something hearty for dinner that will cause your family to stand and applaud then this is it…now go on, make yourself some potato soup!!!

OH, oh…I almost forgot.  I made this last summer with corn freshly off the cob for Potato Corn Chowder.  I’m sure it would be fine also with frozen corn.

BTW, what is the difference between creamed soup and chowder?…I think I’m going to have to look this up.

Carry on…

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I haven’t posted a recipe in quite a while…not that we haven’t been eating or anything, we have done plenty of that!
No, it is just that I have neglected to share…my sincerest apologies.
To correct this grave error, I am going to share a recipe that I whipped up with some of our remaining pumpkins.  These happened to have been sitting on my front porch.
And yes this recipe is vegan, but just because it happens to be, it has not be retrofitted to be, just like apple pie is vegan…well unless you use lard in the crust,
Or serve it with ice cream…
And a glass of milk…

OK, bad example, but you all know what I mean…right???

So without further ado…

I am proud to present to you the uncut version, with bonus features, in Dolby surround sound…


I am starting with homegrown pumpkins but I’m sure you could use canned but I am suggesting that you walk on the wild side, be daring, be bold…go pick a real live pumpkin, or in my case open the front door and grab a couple.

Or go buy one or two at your farmer’s market, or purchase them at the corner grocer.  Either way this is how I’m going to start our little tale today…
Pumpkin soup4
Sitting on the cutting board, blissfully unaware of what is coming next…two sweet little pumpkins!
Pumpkin soup5
Oh the horror of cooking...but there are sacrifices that must be made for the greater good!
Pumpkin soup6
But in the middle of the unspeakable…there is fun to be had!
Kids and pumpkin slime…kids and pumpkin seeds.
A perfectly messy and wonderful combination!
“Whoo Hoo…pumpkin guts” Sweet Girl’s exact words
Clean out the innards and you will have…
Pumpkin soup7
Cleanly gutted pumpkin, ready for the oven!
Put them in a 400F oven, covered loosely with foil, until soft.
After you take them out let them cool.
Peel and slice.
Pumpkin soup8
Put into your blender with one can of coconut milk, one can of water, and 3 to 4 Tablespoons of honey…
Add some cinnamon and nutmeg…or you could use pumpkin pie spice.
I would love to tell you how much to add but I just dumped it in, add lots if you like it spicy, less if you want it less spicy…original huh?  Then add a teeny tiny pinch of salt…
Then blend!
Note I am cheating a little here because I am using a Vita-Mix, you can use a regular blender but just make sure to blend it long enough to be very smooth…unless you like it a little chunky, then feel free.  My Vita-Mix doesn’t do chunky well, just smoooooth!

Pumpkin soup1
Here it is after blending and chilling thoroughly…it really is best COLD!
It is light, refreshing and delicately sweet.
Pumpkin soup2
And since I don’t do delicate very well I added something with a little zing…
how about some blueberries?  Anyone?
Pumpkin soup3
I’m also going to add a little dab of yogurt,

In case you were wondering!

So to recap you need, the meat from two small pumpkins, one can of coconut milk, one can of water, honey 3 – 4 Tablespoons, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and a blender.

That’s it…could it be any easier?

I think not!

So in this season of complicated, heavy, and hot dishes this is a refreshing change of pace!

Kim can also be found at the inadvertent farmer where she raises organic fruits, veggies, critters, kids and….a camel!

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