Hot and Delicious Soups

March 13th, 2009 by Ali


With much of the country still within winter’s chilly grasp, it’s a great time of year for warm, comforting, and delicious soups. Enjoy!

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ITALIAN SAUSAGE AND PASTA SOUP
From Nancy Jacobson at Chinaberry

1 pound of Italian sausage
2 small carrots, chopped (about 6 oz.)
1 onion, chopped (about 6 oz.)
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1½ quarts of chicken broth (I use the Trader Joe’s organic)
1 14½ oz. can diced tomatoes
1 15 oz. can white beans (rinsed and drained)
½ tablespoon dried basil
1 cup dry pasta shells (or some kind of small shape)
2 quarts of fresh spinach leaves (about 6 oz.). I measure them by packing them into a quart measure
Parmesan cheese

  1. Squeeze the sausages from casings into a 4-6 quart pan over high heat and brown, stirring often, breaking the pieces apart until crumbly (8-10 minutes). Drain all but one tablespoon of fat.
  2. Add carrots, onion, and garlic; stir often until onion is limp, 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add broth, tomatoes (including juice), beans, and basil and bring to a boil.
  4. * Add pasta, reduce heart, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in spinach and cook until just wilted, about 30 seconds.
  5. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

* Note: This is fine if you will be serving/eating it all at one sitting. I cook the pasta separately so that it’s not sitting in the leftover soup swelling up.

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WINTER SQUASH AND KALE SOUP
Janet Kelly’s (Chinaberry) wonderful vegetarian soup was adapted from a recipe in Today’s Health & Wellness magazine.

1 tsp canola oil
1 small onion, chopped; or 1/3 cup frozen chopped onion
1 small red bell paper, cored, seeded, and chopped (about ½ cup)
1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 14½-ounce can reduced-sodium diced tomatoes
2 cups peeled, seeded, and cubed kaboche, acorn, butternut, or blue Hubbard winter squash
1 cup reduced-sodium vegetable broth
2 Tbs reduced-fat peanut butter
4 kale leaves (about 6 ounces), stemmed and shredded
¼ tsp salt

  1. Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Swirl in the canola oil, then add the onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until softened and aromatic, about 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in the cayenne, cook 5 seconds, then stir in the tomatoes, squash, broth, and peanut butter until the peanut butter dissolves. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook until the squash is soft, about 15 minutes, stirring once in a while.
  3. Stir in kale, cover again, and cook until kale is tender and squash falls apart to thicken the soup, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and spoon into bowls. Serve at once.

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VEGETABLE SOUP WITH DUMPLINGS
”This is comfort food! Delicious and satisfying. Makes a large pot, but my 3 boys eat it up.”
- Nancy Quarella, Buena, New Jersey

1 cup diced zucchini
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup diced potatoes
1 cup diced celery

Saute vegetables in oil in large soup pot for 10-15 minutes. Add:
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
4 vegetable broth cubes
4 bay leaves
1 tsp dill weed

Let simmer about 30 minutes over medium-low heat. Make dough for dumplings. Drop by ¼ cupfuls on top of simmering soup. Cover and let cook 10 minutes. Do not remove cover until done!

Dumpling Dough:
2 cups flour (Can use a mix of all purpose and whole wheat)
1 T baking powder
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup water
¼ cup oil

In bowl, mix dry ingredients. Stir in water and oil.

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HUNGARIAN MUSHROOM SOUP
”This soup was made once a week at a small health food store called “Earthly Delights” in downtown Schenectady, where I used to work. When I left the area, they gave me the recipe.”
- Madelyn Flagler; Schenectady, New York

12 oz fresh, sliced mushrooms
2 cups chopped onions
4 T butter
3 T flour
1 cup milk
1-2 tsp dill weed
1 T Hungarian paprika
1 T tamari sauce
1 tsp salt
2 cups vegetable stock or water
Pepper
½ cup sour cream
2 tsp lemon juice
¼ cup fresh parsley

Saute onions in 2 T butter, add mushrooms, 1 tsp dill, ½ cup liquid, tamari and paprika. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Melt rest of butter in saucepan, whisk in flour while cooking, add milk, cook until thick. Stir in mushroom mixture and rest of stock. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Add salt, pepper, lemon juice, sour cream and additional dill if desired.

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CHILI BLANCO
”This is one of those recipes perfect for a Saturday afternoon. It takes some time to prepare but is worth the effort. Low fat sour cream and reduced fat cheese work in this recipe.”
- Debra Adsmond; Morehead, Kentucky

1 lb white beans
6 cups chicken broth
1 tsp chicken stock base
2 onions, chopped
1 T oil
6-8 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz can green chiles, diced
2½ tsp cumin
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp cayenne
4 cups cooked diced white chicken
1 cup sour cream
3 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Garnishes: sour cream, chopped green onion, cilantro, diced tomatoes

Combine beans, broth, soup base in a large pot. Simmer covered about 2 hours. Saute onions in oil. Add onions, garlic, chiles, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper and chicken to beans. Simmer 30 minutes. Add sour cream and cheese. Heat just until cheese melts.
Note: The soup can be frozen before adding sour cream and cheese.

[Note: The last three recipes were taken from our cookbook: Eat, Drink & Be Chinaberry (sorry, sold out).]

Please share your soup recipes!

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