When the weather turns colder, is there anything more comforting than a nice, hot bowl of soup. (Don't answer right now) A few years ago, I made my very first turkey vegetable soup. It wasn't very good. But I made a huge vat so I had a LOT of servings, which I froze. Then I discovered that eating soup for lunch made it possible to lose a couple of pounds. Yes, soup is good food.
So I started making soup on a regular basis. I'd save the chicken carcasses and make chicken soup, but some of the bones on a chicken are really small and no matter how much I sieved it, and picked through the remains, a few little bones got through. Mr. L will NOT eat my chicken soup, so I quit saving the carcasses and, after a reader's suggestion, started buying turkey parts to make soup. Turkey's have much bigger bones, and seldom does one get through. (But Mr. L still won't eat my turkey soup. Go figure! Ah, well. More for me!)
I also make a lot of 16 (or 15--depending on the package) bean soup. Before the end of summer, I visit my favorite Mennonite grocery store and stock up on ham hocks. The ones in my regular store are not only overly smoked, but virtually have no meat on them. The ones from the Mennonite store are a little more money, but man--what a great bean soup they make. (I have 6 hocks in the freezer. That's about enough for 60 bowls of soup! Yum-Yum!)
Yesterday I made one of my favorite soups: Cabbage Soup. This soup has virtually NO calories, and there's a reason it's got a reputation as a weight-loss diet in and of itself. The thing is, it tastes pretty darn good, too.
3 tablespoons olive oil
½ onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 quarts water
4 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
½ teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
½ head cabbage, cored and coarsely chopped Cabbage
1 (14.5 ounce) can Italian-style stewed tomatoes, drained and diced
4 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar (optional)
In a large stockpot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Stir in onion and garlic; cook until onion is transparent, about 5 minutes. Stir in water, bouillon, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then stir in cabbage. Simmer until cabbage wilts, about 10 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and the vinegar. Return to a boil, then simmer 15 to 30 minutes, stirring often.
Yield: 6-8 servings
Okay, now spill it. What's your favorite comfort food?