Monday, October 10, 2011

Soup 101

Almost Like St. Elmo's Bean Soup

     

     The last time Roy and I ate at St. Elmo's the weather was chilly. So, when the waiter asked us if we wanted soup, it seemed like a good idea. I asked him what kind it was. He said it was sort of like Campbell's Bean with Bacon.  Later, he confided that up until 1996, the soup they served actually was Campbell's Bean with Bacon!  Only in recent years has it been "homemade" - actually made by some guy that supplies soup to restaurants.  Making soup isn't hard at all, especially if canned beans are used and the steps below are followed. This post includes my copy cat version of St. Elmo's soup and some easy recipes to get anyone started.


If you can open a can of broth, you can make yummy soup!

The Formula for Easy Soup:


Step 1: First Saute the vegetables in two tablespoons of olive oil.

Step 2: Add canned broth (chicken, beef, vegetable) or tomato sauce.

Step 3: Add precooked meat and/or rinsed & drained canned beans.
Step 4: Add vegetables and/or precooked pasta
Step 5: Add spices


 Almost Like St. Elmo’s Navy Bean Soup

2 carrots peeled and sliced
2 stalks of celery, diced
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 (15 oz.) cans of chicken broth
2 (15 oz.) cans of Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed
One 8 oz. package of diced ham
2 generous tablespoons of tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
1/4 teaspoon of thyme
1/8 teaspoon of dried red pepper flakes


Sauté the carrots, celery, and onion in the olive oil on medium low heat until the tender.  Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil.  Turn down the heat and let simmer about 10 minutes.
Not necessary but nice to do: Take two cups of the soup (beans and all) out of the pot and puree it in a food processor or blender, and then return it to the pot.


Minestrone

 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 stalks of celery, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
Two 15 oz. cans of broth (vegetable, chicken, beef)
1 cup of cooked chicken or beef (optional)
                                  1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes                                 
1 medium zucchini, sliced
1 medium yellow squash, sliced
1/4 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1/2 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans (white Kidney)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried basil


Sauté the carrots, celery, and onion in the olive oil on medium low heat until the tender.  Add the garlic and saute another 30 seconds.  Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and let the soup simmer for about 20 minutes.
* Click HERE for a pesto sauce recipe - great to stir in just before serving. 


Tex Mex Chicken Soup



2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 medium onion diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 (15 oz.) cans chicken broth
2 cups cooked and diced chicken
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz.) can corn, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz.) can chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper

For serving: mall bunch of fresh cilantro and ripe avocado

Saute the carrots, celery, and onion   in the olive oil over medium low heat until they are tender. Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with chopped fresh cilantro and chopped avocado.



Click HERE to read an article I wrote about making Red Bean & Ham Soup.

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