Category: Soup


I was talking to my nutrition coach earlier this week and she suggested I find ways to add more veggies to my meals. Great idea, except I’m not really excited about eating veggies. I’ve eaten quite a few salads lately but I’m a little tired of lettuce, so here we are.

I’m not sure how I came across this recipe. I must have been looking at another recipe on the site, because I wouldn’t have gone looking for a sweet potato recipe!

Sweet potatoes are OK. I know they pack a huge nutrition wallop, so I try to eat them more than just at Thanksgiving when I can smother them with marshmallows.

Sweet Potato Pear SoupI do like pears, and there are very few ingredients in this recipe so I thought I would check it out. Turns out this is a lovely soup!

I really enjoyed the pear fragrance while it was cooking. I probably would have enjoyed it more if I didn’t have a pot of spicy chili on the burner next to it.

The flavor of the soup is somewhat subtle. Neither the sweet potato nor the pear dominate – they blend nicely. Mine was fairly creamy even before I added the yogurt, so you could leave that out if you don’t like dairy or don’t have any on hand.

As for spices, the recipe suggests seasoning the soup with pepper and that’s probably delicious. For me, pears are a natural to hold the warm spices – cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice. Any of those would probably be really good! I have several containers of cardamom, so I used that plus a touch of nutmeg.

I’m excited to add this to my menus this week! I think it’ll make a good lunch paired with sliced turkey or some quinoa, and would even be a nice afternoon snack. I separated the soup into two containers and will freeze one of them (I only added the yogurt to 1 container so I could freeze the other).

Look at me, eating my sweet potatoes. My nutrition coach will be proud!

 

Sweet Potato and Pear Soup

Slightly Adapted From Orgasmic Chef

Stuff you need:

1 Tablespoons butter

1 onion, chopped

1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped

2 pears, peeled and chopped [I used large pears]

3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth [I used chicken]

1 teaspoon cardamom [Any of the “warm” spices would be good. Use your favorites!]

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg [optional]

¼ cup Greek yogurt [optional]

Croutons, dollop of yogurt or roasted sweet potato chunks for garnish

 

Now what?

Place a large pot over medium heat and add the butter. When the butter has melted add the onion and a sprinkling of salt and cook for 3-4 minutes until the onion has softened. Stir often and try to sweat the onions, not brown them.

Add the sweet potato chunks and sauté in the onions for 2-3 minutes. Add the pears and sauté for another 2 minutes.

Add the stock to the pot and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the sweet potatoes and pears are soft.

Use a stick blender until the soup is smooth and then test for seasoning. [If you don’t have a stick blender you can put this in a blender in batches. But be careful – use small batches because the lid won’t stay on with the hot liquid!]

Add the cardamon and nutmeg, reheat almost to boiling and stir in the yogurt.

Garnish with the croutons, yogurt or chunks of roasted sweet potato.

NOTE:

This soup freezes well but freeze before adding the yogurt.

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Yesterday the temperature was in the 70s. This afternoon? 31 very damp, chilly degrees. I know it’s November, but I was really enjoying the warm sunshine!

Steak Soup

Steak Soup – Kansas City Style!

Since the temperature isn’t working in my favor, it seemed like a good day to make a pot of soup. Plaza III The Steakhouse in Kansas City is known for their Steak Soup. When the natives talk about steak soup, it’s this one. This copycat recipe from my friend Jennifer’s family cookbook is delicious and perfect for a chilly day! The recipe makes about a gallon of soup, so if you don’t have a big family or a party of people to feed, freeze some or share with friends!

The soup is surprisingly simple and uses few ingredients. The original recipe calls for Accent but I don’t use it because it contains – or is – MSG, which makes me wheeze. Instead, I substituted some salt and burger seasoning to add richness.

It’s easy to see why this is a Kansas City favorite!

Plaza III Steak Soup

This recipe makes about a gallon of soup so make sure you are using a BIG stock pot! If you don’t want that much, the recipe should halve easily.

Stuff you need:

1 pound ground chuck / ground beef [The Pretty One likes thicker soup so I used 1 1/2 pounds.]

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped carrots

1/2 cup margarine (1 stick)

1 cup flour

8 cups water [Original recipe said 1/2 gallon but I had to look up how many cups that was!]

2 Tablespoons beef base / beef concentrate [This is the stuff in the jars in the soup aisle, probably on the top shelf. Restaurants use this – that’s why their soups are so good!]

1 package frozen mixed veggies (about 1 pound)

1 can (2 pounds) tomatoes, UNdrained [I used 2 14-oz cans petite diced tomatoes.]

1 Tablespoon pepper

1 Tablespoon Accent OR 1 teaspoon salt + 1 Tablespoon Weber Grill Creations Gourmet Burger Seasoning OR other beef seasoning

Now what?

Put the ground beef, chopped onion, celery and carrots in large stock pot and cook until beef is browned.

Drain off fat and transfer beef and veggie mixture to bowl. Set aside.

Melt margarine in stock pot then stir in flour to make a paste. Cook for 2 minutes.

Add cold water. Cook until thickened, stirring to keep it smooth, about 5 minutes. [Mine didn’t get thick, more like a cloudy water.]

Add in the beef concentrate and stir to mix.

Add in the meat & veggie mix, frozen veggies, tomatoes and seasonings. [I didn’t drain the tomatoes. If you think the soup is too watery, simmer with the lid for another 30-45 minutes.]

Simmer for 45 minutes or until veggies are tender.

I made this soup in response to cravings for a hearty vegetable soup. I know I’m not usually a veggie advocate, but I do like a good vegetable-based soup.

The flavor of this soup was just what I was looking for – hearty, tomato based, and well-balanced with the spices in it. I made this while I was trying to cut my meat consumption, so I cut the meat in half and doubled the beans. You could easily add more vegetables such as green beans for even more veggie goodness. Click for recipe.

A sprinkling of parmesan cheese tops this off nicely. Serve it with some crusty bread from the bakery department at the grocery store, and it’s a nice, hearty meal on a chilly day!