New Year! New You! Yes, it is one of those cheesy clichés that is associated with every diet commercial and gym membership advertisement out there….so why not a food blog and YouTube Channel. (Haha…literally, as I am writing this, I just got a notification on my phone from the store Target, saying: New year, new you: 30% off C9 Championship Clothing.) After all, the start of the new year means New Year’s resolutions. A friend texted me last night saying he had made 11 resolutions for the new year. He said he was feeling motivated this year and he figured he’d shoot for the moon in 2018. I’m feeling motivated too…and, well, I have yet to make one. Don’t judge.
Maybe my resolution this year should be to make resolutions earlier in the year so that when 2019 rolls around I am prepared to hit the ground running! Check in with me next year at this time. 😉
Despite my lack of forethought in 2017, a lot of folks, including myself—even if they haven’t made full on resolutions—have at least made a mental note about trying to eat healthier.
That’s an easy one to put on the list especially after some pretty gluttonous holiday eating. Although, if you read my last post, I did pretty good this year not overindulging on stuff that I really didn’t “want” but that was just there so I ate it. Soooo….the way I see it, I’m ahead of the game going in to 2018 and I can’t think of a better way to capitalize on that than with a healthy and hearty soup.
I just love this soup and when it pops into my head to make it, it just sounds perfect. Soup is like that, you don’t really actively think, “I should make soup for dinner.” It tends to play second fiddle to more traditional dinnertime foods.
One thing I can guarantee, you will not be let down with this recipe and it will completely satisfy you…especially if you’re in one of those places on the Globe where it is utterly freezing right now. I am in Atlanta as I write this and it is 11°F:
…which, if you don’t know anything about Atlanta, that is unusually cold!! Pray for snow, right?!? Or maybe we can go ice the driveway and do a little winter ice skating. (Forgive me, I’m getting a little nostalgic for the Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Christmas movies, where every movie seems to feature a little ice skating rink. Again, don’t judge, I just love those movies. Hey! That should be my 2018 resolution….to be in a Hallmark Christmas movie. Hello…Hallmark…if you’re listening, I’m ready to book my ticket to Vancouver or whatever picturesque locale you’ll be shooting in this year. Umm…but I digress.)
We were talking about eating healthier and my Mom’s Vegetable Soup is a recipe to get this year started off right. It was written to make about 4 servings, which is a touch larger than a traditional Tiny Kitchen Big Taste recipe, but that’s definitely not a bad thing in this case. It will NOT go to waste…I promise. It stores well in the fridge for several days and heats up in a flash, which is great because one of your resolutions probably has something to do about being more productive. If you want to get really inventive, get some of those microwaveable plastic containers that you can store in the freezer and portion up some single serving sizes that you can microwave in a minute or two.
So let’s talk the bones of this soup. It starts off with a traditional French Mirepoix…onions, celery and carrots.
But from there, the world is your oyster and you can change up how you make the soup. And, although I love to cut my own vegetables for the mirepoix (locally fresh and saves some $$), I’ve started seeing them pre-cut in the store (I know Trader Joe’s has it), which although more expensive than doing it yourself, will save you some time…so I am not totally against that.
This soup is both vegetarian and vegan as I made it with the vegetable broth. I love adding a ton of vegetables to the soup. But, truly, the possibilities are endless…how about trying some of these varieties:
– Veggies: Green Beans, Lima beans (lots of protein), Kale, Cabbage. You can add these with the vegetables at the beginning. If you want to save time, you could also buy some frozen mixed vegetable to add to the mirepoix.
– Grains: Rice, pasta, barley, quinoa (lots of protein). Add already-cooked before serving or let them cook in the soup. If you let them cook in the soup, you’ll need to add more broth as they will absorb quite a bit.
…and if you’re not concerned about this being a vegan or vegetarian soup, you could try these varieties:
– Meat Broth: Use Beef or Chicken broth
– Meat: Sausage, Mini meatballs (if uncooked, just drop them into the boiling soup before turning it down…otherwise add it at any time)
I have had all of the above varieties and they all work out fantastically well. But I want to hear from you and hear about some of the varieties that you’ve discovered. I just can’t wait for you to give this recipe a whirl.
Until then, I want to wish you a happy and healthy new year! Let’s make 2018 a great one!
Mom's Vegetable Soup
SO WHAT YOU'RE GONNA NEED IS:
Prepare the Vegetables
- Dice Onion, Celery and Carrots (known as a traditional French “Mirepoix”).
- Dice potatoes and press Garlic and to mirepoix.
- Chiffonade Spinach and set aside.
Make the Soup
- In a Large pot or Dutch Oven over medium heat, add Olive Oil.
- Add Mirepoix, Potatoes and Garlic, Salt and Pepper. Cook until vegetable start to soften (Note: Onions with start to become translucent)
- Add Oregano, Thyme and Bay Leaf.
- Add Diced Tomatoes, V8 Juice and Vegetable Stock.
- Turn up heat and bring up to a boil. Turn down to low. Cover and let simmer for about a half an hour or more.
- About five minutes before serving, add the Spinach.