Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Soup

I am cooking more; I got away from it over the summer when the kitchen was hot and I was working a lot of overtime. I tend to cook for an army so if I make two full meals a week, they generally last the family four dinners plus a lunch or two for me. It's good for me to be in the kitchen; I feel like a better provider, a better mom. It's also better for my weight-state-of-mind.

Besides dinners, I'm making a pot of soup each week. Soup helps me pack a full serving of veggies and often fiber into a yummy, home cooked meal which travels easily. The soup is made just for me, with stuff I like and nothing left out because others don't. I eat it three or four days out of the week; taking it with me for lunch at least twice. Other family members are welcome to a bowl as long as there's no complaining about the contents. It's called Mom Soup for a reason.

I usually start the soup in the morning, figuring to have it ready by evening.

Last week's soup was sausage and bean. So thick it was nearly a stew; I first rinsed a package of 15 bean soup mix available at WalMart or your local grocery. After the beans soaked overnight, I started bringing them to a boil in water twice a deep as the beans in a 14 quart stock pot. I sauteed diced onions, garlic and smoked sausage in a skillet, then deglazed it with red wine.

Onions, garlic, sausage all went into the stock pot along with a can of beef broth and a can of diced tomatoes. Salt, pepper, herbs of choice (mine are red pepper, basil, thyme and bay leaf) and long long hours simmering on medium low are the finishing touches.

This week's soup is turkey and rice. Thanksgiving may be next week, but turkey is a good option for a big family any time so we make it several times a year. Besides, Cowboy's parents are hosting at their house and making the bird on T-Day; they aren't likely to send home the carcass for my soup making pleasure. Turkey last Sunday won't spoil our appetites for it next Thursday.

I make sure not to pick the bones too clean on my bird, leaving lots of meat to fall off in the soup pot. For good measure, I cook the neck in the same session. This time, we stuck a quartered onion in the cavity during roasting. All went into the pot with water covering the bones completely. A good grinding of salt, a bay leaf, chopped parsley and sprinkling of thyme, then the whole was brought to a slow, rolling boil in my trusty stock pot this morning.

This afternoon, I carefully strained the bones from the broth and added diced celery and carrots along with sauteed onions and garlic. Most of the water's boiled off by this time, so I added a few cups more and 3/4 cup uncooked rice, then turned down the heat to simmer.

I just checked; I have a pot of glorious broth swimming with veggies, meat and rice. Tomorrow's going to be so yummy. I think I'll pack extra for work.

By the way, soup is also good way to win friends and influence people.

Give someone a bowl of homemade soup; warm a tummy, make a friend.

3 comments:

Aynde said...

I love soup!!! Soup is delecious. I must share my recipe for an excellent heart healthy soup. It kicks but and is veddy tasty.

Being so sick these past few days I really miss the soup at the Rose Cafe. :)

MamaChristy said...

I can't believe it: my family ATE MY SOUP!!!!!!

They ate it all. Every bite. I'd be flattered if I weren't so hungry!

WHW said...

Yo, Mamachristy! Long time no talk.

I love soup. I could eat soup every day.

My wife also boils the meat off the bones and adds veggies. Unfortunately, she calls it Chicken Carcass Soup. It really needs a new name.