Someone in my family came up with an idea a few months ago. The suggestion was made that we all get together for a soup night. I remember the suggestion. We were all together at Mom’s house. I can’t remember who made the suggestion, but we all liked the idea enough to keep talking about it. We didn’t actually have a soup night, but we kept the idea alive. We kept saying how much we liked the idea. But when we actually had a chance to get together, all of us, for an evening meal, we opted to go to a culinary institute for a four course dinner prepared by professionally trained chefs.
We couldn’t get in. My cousin called to make the reservations and we got one. For some time in May. And here we had this night – tonight – that we had all set aside for our culinary adventure. And there was that idea sitting out there – the one we’d kept alive by stating our intentions over and over. The two came together, a perfect match. Meant to be. And tonight, we are having our first ever – but I’m guessing not our last – soup night. I’m really looking forward to it! Mostly I don’t care a lot about food. If it’s there and tasty, I’ll eat it. If not, I’m okay with that, too. (Unless Pat Potter’s cooking. Then, for some reason, I eat like I’m starving.)
I care about tonight’s spread. I’m already vicariously tasting the offerings. Of course, it helps that I’m already smelling two of them! We’re meeting at Mom’s and since my office is also here, Tim and I are making our soup here. Mom made hers this morning. Since I have soup on the brain, I’m going to share our recipes with you and you can join us for soup night!
Mom’s Vegetable Soup:
1/2 small green pepper
I cup cabbage
1 package frozen peas
1 package frozen green beans
3/4 cup celery
2 cups stewed tomatoes
1 small onion
Brown hamburger. Bring to a boil in water to cover: cabbage, celery, green pepper & carrots. And remaining ingredients. Simmer 2 – 3 hours.
Tim and Tara’s Bean Soup:
2 1# bags of navy beans (or four 15 oz cans of navy beans)
1 # ham chopped into small cubes
1/2 onion finely chopped
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
six cups water
Pre-soak beans with quick soak method. (Or use four cans of navy beans and avoid the soaking.) Put all ingredients in crock pot. Stir. Cook on high for four hours and then turn down to low, stirring occasionally throughout the day.
Aunt Phyl’s Potato Soup (my personal favorite! I eat until it’s gone!!)
Boil, in water, one large chicken breast. Cook for about 30 minutes. Drain, rinse and refrigerate. Peel and cube about six medium size potatoes. Rinse and cover with 16 oz can chicken broth. If more liquid is needed add 1 cup of water and 1 chicken bouillon cube. Cook until potatoes are just fork tender. Leave in liquid and mash just a few times. You want to leave mostly cubes. Add 10-12oz package of frozen broccoli. Leave on low heat while you cube 1/2 lb Velveeta cheese and cooled chicken breast. Add these to potatoes and broccoli and cook until cheese is thoroughly incorporated into mixture. Salt and pepper to taste.
Syd & Shawn’s Turnip, Apple & Potato Soup
2 T unsalted butter
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and ground white pepper
1 # turnips, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
2 tart apples, peeled, cored and quartered
1/2 # gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
2 T creme fraiche
2 T chopped fresh parsley (Italian)
Melt butter over medium heat, add onion, thyme, bay leaf and a pinch o salt. Saute until onion is tender. Add turnips, apples, potatoes, a pinch of salt and 1 cup water. Cover and simmer until the vegetables and apples are tender. Add 4 more cups water, raise the heat to high and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for twenty minutes. Let cool slightly.
Working in batches, puree the soup in blender and return to heat. Thin with water if necessary. Season with salt and white pepper. Serve with creme fraiche and chopped parsley.
And…for our soup night entertainment we’re going to watch The Help. Tim and I received the movie for Christmas and we all wanted to watch it together so we haven’t seen it yet!
Bon Appetit, everyone!