Soup's On!

The next few days has rain and cooler weather in the forecast. I haven't seen rain since moving to the Bay Area, but everyone tells me it will chill me to the bone! So, I got prepared on Sunday. I made two batches of soup to help keep me warm and cozy (I will have blankets too Abbie). 

The first one was a Minestrone soup (inspired by Martha Stewart) and the second was a Ginger Spiced Apple and Butternut Squash soup (inspired by Weight Watchers). Both turned out rather well, but since Chris refused to even try them tonight (I'm not a bad cook, he just hates veggies), I decided to freeze about 1/2 of my batches for the next 6 months of rain and cooler weather that will be around here.

Quick tip, if you want to freeze soup, but don't have much room in your freezer, put them in a ziplock freezer bag and lay flat in the freezer, they will freeze flat that way and then you can store it standing or stacked. 

Do you have a favorite soup recipe? If so, feel free to share with me. This is just the beginning of soup season!

Minestrone Soup
Serves 6
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
3 stalks of celery diced
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary or ¼ teaspoon dried
Salt and pepper to taste
1 can (28 ounces diced tomatoes)
1 large potato, peeled and diced (optional)
3-4 cups of kale, chopped
1 can (15 ounces) cannelloni or garbanzo beans (rinsed and drained)
½ lb green beans trimmed and cut
 1 clove of garlic
3 cups vegetable broth
4 cups water

In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, and spices. Cook until softened about 5-8 minutes. Add tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Add beans and kale, veggie broth and water and bring to a boil. Stir in green beans and reduce to a simmer and cook until veggies are tender (20 minutes). Serve sprinkled with a bit of parmesan cheese and enjoy!

Apple-Butternut Squash Soup
serves 10, about 1 cup per serving
1 ½ tablespoon freshly grated ginger root
2 medium leeks, white part only
3 large apples, chopped
3 lbs butternut squash, peeled and chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup fat free half and half
1/2 cup frozen apple juice concentrate
Salt and pepper

Add grated ginger, leeks and apple juice in a large pot; cover and simmer until leeks are tender, about 10 minutes. Add apples, squash and 1 cup broth; cover and simmer until very tender, about 1 hour. Purée soup in pot using a hand-held immersion blender or use a blender in small batches (I used my handy magic bullet) and return to pot. Add the rest of the chicken broth and season with salt and pepper; simmer until heated through, about 10 minutes. Stir in half and half and serve.



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