I really am a soupatarian. It’s going to be in the 90′s today (as usual) and I’m having hot soup for breakfast, and probably again for lunch and for dinner too. Surely I cannot be the only person on the planet that eats soup in the dead of summer, or eats the same thing 3 times in one day.
Yes, it’s a big picture. Deal with it, I love the texture of this damn thrift store bowl.
Anyway, each week I make what I call a “pot meal.” Basically the idea is it’s big ol’ pot of something really healthy and packed with veggies that I can take with me all week to work. I work 3pm to 11:30 and my husband doesn’t usually get out of bed till noon (he works till 4 am) so we have very strange eating schedules, and since I only see my husband for 1-2 hours, the last thing I want to be doing during that time is mussing with lunches.
So instead, on Saturday or Sunday I try to make what usually ends up being a big pot of soup. That way it’s ready to go. I usually supplement it with other things. For example, for dinner I’ll have this with a basic salad , tomorrow I might have a Tofurkey Sandwich with it.
Anywho, the thing I love about Vegetable Soup is that it’s so versatile. What I put in it depends on whatever the heck I happen to have leftover from the week, or what vegetables I happen to have in my freezer.
While this isn’t really a recipe, there are some rules to getting this right.
First rule of soup club is we don’t talk about soup club… err… have a good base. Something to know about this, is that any soup that has tomatoes in it will inevitably taste better the second day. I usually make it the day before.
Prep round – Figure out your base.
The base for me is whatever canned tomatoes, and bullion and water (or broth). This particular one has vegetable stewed Italian tomatoes with juice – chopped up (or squished with your hands – that’s fun too). But you can use not-beef bullion or not-chicken bullion as well, and you could use diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, rotel tomatoes, etc. You get the picture.
Round 1 tough vegetables
*You can cook the Onions, Garlic and Celery prior to starting the base I don’t do it because I’m lazy. I don’t suggest putting potatoes in this round, or else you’ll get mushy. Also, here you can start adding in spices. I added Italian seasoning mix, and some Mrs. Dash (I dunno why, but it was there and somehow ended up in the soup), but you could use taco seasoning and make a more southwestern soup. I don’t suggest salting at this time. Start cooking this on a light boil while you cut up the round two vegetables.
Round 2 vegetables wanna be tough vegetables
Bell Peppers (I do not like these in soup but whatever)
When the desired tenderness, taste for spices / salt and make some adjustments. Add some heat!
Cooked Beans – if canned, drained and rinsed
Zucchini – I cut the seeds out, ewww.
Greens (Spinach, kale, etc)
You don’t need to cook the final round for long, just enough to warm stuff up and tenderize the Zucchini a little – maybe 5-10 minutes. It will continue to cook even after removed from the heat, the soup stays hot for so long. Now is also the time to salt it.
As for salt, I always use Herbamare.
If you’ve never tried this stuff, I highly highly recommend it. It’s an herbal salt, so it’s technically a seasoning salt, but a very neutral one. I use it on literally everything. Um, except on sweet stuff. I don’t think this would taste good on Tofutti ice cream at all.
Anyway, voila – you have enough soup to eat for a week, yay!