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Archive for the tag “soup”

Another winter soup.

That yellow pepper is starting to look a little scary...but don't worry, we used a different one.

Because when the temperatures drop and your body goes into hibernation mode, there’s no such thing as too much soup…at least not in our house.  This soup was inspired by the cold snap as well as the plethora of fresh vegetables in our refrigerator teetering on overripe.  It was also exciting because it was the first adventure with our giant new soup pot from Ikea!  (Ah, simple pleasures…)  As I’ve said before, we hate to waste food, so we decided to make something where we could use everything in our refrigerator.  And I do mean everything.  If it was a vegetable or semi-liquid, it went in.


So this dish began like so many others…come on, you know the drill.  Slice up some fresh garlic and throw it in your soup pot.  Let that saute as you chop up whatever other veggies you have in your refrigerator.  We used zucchini, celery, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans and a yellow bell pepper.  As those are being cut into perfect bite-sized pieces, you can throw some water and instant veggie stock mix into your pot while adding your veggies as they’re ready.


We then added half a jar of marinara sauce (which is totally optional) that we hadn’t yet used up as well as the rest of our tomato paste.  We didn’t have very much left at the time, and if there is one thing I would change about this soup, it would be adding more tomato paste.  It was tasty just as we made it, but I think extra tomato paste would have given it a little more thickness and a little more flavor.

Look at all those veggies!!

As those boil, add in a can of beans of your choice.  Today, we added white beans in addition to chopped basil, tabasco sauce, salt, pepper and garlic powder.  You can add more or less tabasco sauce depending on how spicy you want your soup, which I think is directly related to the outside temperature.






Mmmm. And yes, that is indeed a Christmas napkin. Never too early, I say!

Let that all boil together and give it a taste test or two to make sure you have the flavor you’re going for.  Then serve as a first course or a meal and enjoy!  The best part was we were able to eat soup for a week when we didn’t have time or energy to prepare a whole lunch or dinner.  Next time we might even freeze some, but it didn’t last long enough to freeze this time.  I’m pretty sure that’s a good sign.  🙂


Best winter soup, ever.

Winter here is scarier than 1930s gangsters chasing us.

We’re preparing to hunker down and hibernate for winter here in Beijing, so we thought it was time for a delicious, hearty winter soup.  A twist on Italian wedding/lentil soup, this creation kicks with flavor and sticks to your bones to boot, so as the temperatures drop and we barricade ourselves inside for the next four months, we hope you’ll enjoy this soup as much as we did.

We ended up not using the spinach, but it could have been a nice addition.

As with most of our dishes, you can throw in whatever veggies you have lying around.  On this day, we happened to have celery, carrots, (a mildly hot) red pepper, lentils and cauliflower.  We wanted potatoes or something starchy to anchor this soup, but we were out of potatoes so we decided the cauliflower would be a nice substitute.  That is, until about halfway through the prep I went sniffing around the refrigerator to discover some cooked, undressed, rotini pasta noodles that I had made and not used all of earlier in the week.  So naturally, in they went.

The ingredients lineup.

To start, throw the chopped celery, carrots, and red pepper into your soup pot with a half a tablespoon of oil to begin to saute.  After about 3 to 5 minutes, add 4 cups of water (our soup pot is small — until tonight when we go to Ikea!!) with 1.5-2 tablespoons of instant veggie stock mix (or 1 veggie bullion cube).  Then throw in one tablespoon ground black pepper, salt to taste, two to three tablespoons of tomato paste, two table spoons of ground garlic powder and a sprinkle of thyme.  Then add one can of cooked lentils and your cauliflower.

This will all need to come to a boil, so let cook for about 30 minutes.  After it comes to a boil, add in the cooked pasta and cook for another 5-10 minutes.

This soup is so savory and filling, it needs no garnish.  Just a big spoon.  So sit down by the fireplace (or room of candles since we have no fireplace), turn on your favorite movie, and enjoy!


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