Monday, January 23, 2012

Getting Soup-y With It (Two Easy, Inexpensive and Delicious Soup Recipes!)

I am ALL about soup in the winter especially when the soup is easy, inexpensive, and very tasty! 

I have made the following recipes this month and I have to say they both turned out amazingly.  Soup-a-licious if you will.  I also like that they were both reasonably priced to make and took very little time.

I did make slight alterations, which I point out in red, but I am horrible at sticking to recipes so I don't know if my suggestions are better or worse!!  I also like leftovers as T & I eat this during the week for lunches, so I tend to make more than what the recipe calls for.

The first soup is really healthy and satisfying!  Oh yeah, and it tastes awesome. (Seriously folks, this is my new favorite soup. I LOVE it.)

Turkey, Kale and Brown Rice Soup
Giada DeLaurentiis
Recipe HERE

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
5 to 6 large shallots, chopped (I used two medium onions)
3 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
8 ounces ground white turkey meat (Next time I may add a little more, but I like turkey)
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence (Did not have so added pinches of dried thyme, basil and rosemary)
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth, plus more as needed (I needed a little more)
One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice, drained (I used a 28oz can because that is what I had and I would use that much again.  Plus I didn’t drain them and got more of a tomato flavor which I loved)
1 cup cooked brown rice (1 ½ cups)
1 small bunch kale, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (Bought but forgot to add. Didn’t miss it)
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan, optional

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the shallots, carrots and bell pepper and saute, stirring frequently, until the vegetables begin to brown and soften slightly, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the ground turkey and stir until the meat turns white and begins to color very slightly around the edges, 5 to 7 minutes. (I cooked the turkey thoroughly before adding the broth)  Add the herbes de Provence and stir, 1 minute. Add 4 cups broth, tomatoes and rice. Bring to a boil. Stir in the kale and season with 3/4 teaspoon salt and the freshly ground black pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Season with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle each serving with parsley and Parmesan, if using, and serve.

Lamb (or Beef) Stew with Tomatoes and Bacon
Rachael Ray Magazine
Recipe HERE

*I have made this twice, once with beef and once with lamb.  Both were really good.  Both times I served over mashed potatoes and that is why I added more liquid, so there would be a broth to go over the potatoes.  I think the next time we make this instead of eating with mashed potatoes (which is awesome) I am going to add less liquid and add some carrots, mushrooms and pieces of potato into the stew to make it even more hearty.

3 slices bacon, cut 1/2 inch thick (I added 6 slices)
1 1/2 lbs. boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1/2 -inch pieces (Or Beef)
Salt and pepper
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced (Minced garlic)
1 sprig fresh rosemary plus more for garnishing
1 cup chicken broth (1 ½ cups*)
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes (1- 28 oz can*)

In a 6-qt. dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a medium bowl. Season the lamb with salt and pepper. Working in 2 batches, add the lamb to the pot and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch; transfer to the bowl with the bacon.

Add the onion, garlic and rosemary to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the broth, bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until nearly evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the lamb, bacon and tomatoes to the pot and press a piece of parchment on top. Cover and cook over low heat until very tender, about 2 1/2 hours. Garnish each serving with a rosemary sprig.

I have made this once with the parchment and once without it.  Apparently the parchment paper reduces the amount of liquid that drips back down into the stew during cooking and makes it thicker. Both times I needed to add a little cornstarch to thicken it up but when we did use the parchment there was liquid caught ontop of the paper….don’t know if I would use parchment again though.

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