3 Satisfying Soups for the Star Child

“She’s a soup eater.”

My daughter. The second one. The Star Child. She loves soup. She once double-spooned a bowl of crab corn chowder at a fancy restaurant and deemed it the best soup she ever had.

I made a big pot of black bean soup the weekend before this school year started. She took it for lunch the first day, and then every day after that for the rest of the week. She would have eaten two thermoses of soup if I would have given her two. I started to worry that, from that point on, my daughter would forever be the kid that brought the strange, black, sludgy-looking soup to school.

She isn’t. The Star Child is far more of a social butterfly than I ever was. The other kids don’t care what she eats. Or, that she likes to wear a school sweater that’s 2 sizes too small. Buttoned up.
 
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That soup is still a staple for us. I make a big pot and then put big ladle-fuls in jars to heat up when I pack the lunches in the mornings.

We’ve had quite a bit of soup, lately. I suppose it’s the never-ending winter of 2013. It makes me want soup. And bread. With butter.

Anyway, I thought I’d share a few soups that are favorites around here. 

Black Bean Soup in progress

Black Bean Soup in progress

  • The first is that fantastic black bean soup. It’s from the blog most likely to make me cry. In a good way. Usually.

Black Bean Soup  – from Missy at It’s Almost Naptime. This stuff is not in any way vegetarian, so don’t let the name fool you. I suppose you could make it without the whole package of bacon, but that would just be silly.

Jools's Favorite Beef Stew - our way

Jools’s Favorite Beef Stew – our way

  •  Another recent staple is beef stew. We needed a delicious way to use the stew meat from the side of grass-fed beef stored in the chest freezer (possibly the best decision we ever made concerning our food buying).
Leek and Tattie - pre-tattie

Leek and Tattie – pre-tattie

Jools’s Favorite Beef Stew – I have not made a single Jamie Oliver recipe that we didn’t want to have again. This one doesn’t disappoint. I usually double the beef and add sweet potatoes. I always forget to look for jerusalem artichokes so we’ve never tried them. The resulting sop hollers out for crusty bread with butter, but is plenty filling on its own.

  •  Third is an easy potato soup. You can add all sorts of veggies to this and your pickier diners won’t notice. This recipe also introduced me to leeks. Surprisingly tasty! I’ve substituted onions and cabbage for the leeks if the market doesn’t have them. It’s a creamy soup that doesn’t require you to remember to purchase cream. In fact, there’s no milk in it at all!

 

Leek & Tattie & Whatever You Like-ie Soup
A milk-less but creamy potato soup with lots of possibilities.
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Ingredients
  1. 5 lb potatoes, chopped small (but not tiny)
  2. 3 large leeks, use the white and light green part, chopped
  3. *3 small carrots, chopped
  4. *1 sweet onion, chopped
  5. *1/2 head cabbage, chopped
  6. 8 T real butter (one stick)
  7. 1 c flour (I use whole wheat pastry flour)
  8. 8 c stock (chicken or veggie)
  9. salt & pepper
  10. *good cheddar cheese, grated, for garnish
  11. *bacon, for garnish
  12. (Ingredients marked with an asterisk are optional)
Instructions
  1. Fry all the chopped vegetables (including the potatoes) in butter in a big pot. I like to do the onions alone for a bit first if I'm using them, since I like them almost caramelized.
  2. Sprinkle the flour over the softened veggies and toss with a wooden spoon.
  3. Add the stock and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer for 1 hour.
  5. Blend that stuff with a stick blender (or very carefully batch by batch in a blender), adding more stock or water if it is thicker than you like.
  6. Check seasoning, add garnishes, and serve!
Notes
  1. This makes a LOT of soup. It freezes well, but you may need to add water or stock when re-heating, since it thickens quite a bit. That's OK. It doesn't hurt the taste.
  2. It's great to toss in a crockpot for sharing at soup lunches. I made the original for a Scottish Reformation Celebration at church and have since made it 5 more times.
  3. The good, aged cheddar makes a world of difference. Ordinary cheddars just don't have the tooth to balance with the subtle flavors in the soup.
Adapted from Celtic Cookbook
Adapted from Celtic Cookbook
Queen Of None http://www.queenofnone.com/

Like soup? Share one of your favorite recipes in the comments!

 

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