Harvest Winter Soup

Monday, March 10, 2014

I first started making soups in college, during a semester in which my roommate and I had signed up for a CSA. We liked the idea of eating local–after all, Pennsylvania is full of farms, green open space and fertile soil. We also realized that it would save us a ton of money since we both subsisted on mostly vegetables and fruit anyway, which was costly at local grocery store (especially on our babysitting and waitressing budgets.) When our first box arrived, I think we were both a little overwhelmed. What do we do with a rutabaga? Can you really eat turnip greens? My roomie defaulted back to bagged lettuce while I figured out what we could do with our haul. Soup turned out to be the answer in the end. From then on, the majority of our CSA share went into a pot with some broth and we happily ate it all week long. So here’s my rule with soup: there are no rules, so don’t measure and just keep adding until it looks tastes good.

This Harvest Winter Soup is typical of my soup-making style. It’s got:

-1 box low-sodium vegetable broth
-1 can white beans, lightly rinsed
-4-5 carrots, cleaned, peeled and sliced
-3 parsnips, cleaned, peeled and sliced
-1/2 large onion, diced
-large bunch kale
-1 tsp. Herbs de Provence
-1 tsp. cumin
-salt and pepper to taste

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Bring the vegetable broth to boil in a large pot and add the carrots and parsnips. Reduce heat to medium and cook covered until vegetables have slightly softened.

Add the onion, beans, and seasonings and reduce to low heat. Let cook for about 2 hours, or until vegetables are soft and onion is translucent.

Top the pot with as much kale as will fit, return lid and let kale wilt. Stir kale into soup and add another layer to the top. Let simmer until kale is the desired consistency.

Keep this is your fridge for a week of lunches or dinners, or freeze the extra for fast, healthy meals later!

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