Friday, July 18, 2008

Is It Soup, Yet? - Post 47

A few days ago I posted that, as one of the things on my to-do-list, I was making a pot of soup. I'm an all-seasons soup eater -- winter, spring, summer, fall. I prefer the sorts of soups that can make a meal, and don't need much else other than a few crackers, or some cornbread or a slice of home-made bread, and something to drink.

One of the comments on that post was a suggestion (not really a request - just a suggestion) that I share some recipes. So, as I was mentally flailing about for a post subject, I decided to share the recipe for Quick Hamburger Veggie Soup. My friend, Elaine, gave me the basic recipe some years ago, and I've doctored it up to suit myself. Pictured is the pot of soup that was simmering on my stove, readying itself for a late lunch.

Because I use canned vegetables, this soup takes only a bit over 30 minutes to make. However, to those who are on a low-sodium diet: you may substitute fresh vegetables for the canned ones in the recipe to lower the salt content. Fresh veggies should be pre-cooked to the 'done' stage in a microwave oven or on the stove top, so that may add a bit to the cooking time.

Elaine's Quick Hamburger Veggie Soup

* 1 t. olive oil
* 1 pound (more or less) very lean ground beef . I generally use the not more than 4% fat variety. If you use regular ground beef, drain all fat after the meat has browned and before adding anything else.
* 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
* 2 to 4 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped, or to taste (optional, if you don't like/tolerate garlic)
* 1-28 oz. can diced tomatoes with liquid (I use Hunt's brand) - if using fresh tomatoes, about 4 cups, peeled, seeded and chopped
* 1 quart water

* 1/4 cup dried green bell pepper (if using fresh pepper, about 1/2 cup)
* 1/4 cup dried red bell pepper (ditto)
* Fresh or dried herbs (optional) I generally use 1/2 of a bay leaf, a pinch or two of dried thyme and marjoram, and a palm-full of dried parsley flakes
* Generous pinch of dried hot pepper flakes or 1/4 t. ground Cayenne (optional)
* Freshly ground black pepper to taste

* 1- 14 oz. can Italian Flat Green Beans, drained and rinsed (fresh beans, appx. 2 cups, cooked)
* 1- 15 oz. can LeSeur Baby Carrots, with liquid (tiny fresh carrots, appx. 2 cups, cooked, with 1/2 cup cooking liquid)

Please note that there is no additional salt in this recipe. If using fresh vegetables instead of canned ones, you may add salt to taste or as desired.

To make the soup:

Heat a heavy stock pot or dutch oven (at least 4-quart capacity), then add olive oil to thinly coat the bottom. Add ground meat and cook, stirring frequently, until browned. (If using regular ground beef, stop here and drain all visible fat.) Add chopped onions and garlic and stir until semi-translucent. If using garlic, do not let it brown; it will become bitter.

Add tomatoes and water, bell peppers, herbs, and seasonings. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes.

Add green beans and carrots. Simmer for an additional 10 minutes or, if using fresh vegetables, until vegetables are tender. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.

Makes about three and one-half quarts soup.


Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

That looks good, Pat.

TSannie said...

That picture looks wonderful and reading over the ingredients I can see why. YUM! I'm a soup person come fall and winter (much to my mother's irritation as she's a soup girl all year long just like you) and that sounds like the perfect first soup of the season!

Toni said...

I make this (a version of this) all the time, now I can thank Pat for the recipe I didn't even know was hers! LOVE IT. The picture made me slobber. Still, it must be said, my favorite soup is potato soup. We had a restaurant chain out here called Houlihans (now defunct) and I made pilgrimages every Sunday I could for their potato soup. When they announced they were going out of business, they also (finally) published that recipe, but nobody told me and I never got my mitts on it. My potato soup never quite matches theirs -- it could be it's because I'm having to toil to make it and not just show up at a table with my spoon ready!

imac said...

It looks tasty anyhow.

Anonymous said...

Nice recipe Pat. I've just in the last couple of years starting making soup. Parker really likes homemade stuff now. It's fun, and nice to have dinner ready except for a warm up. This will go in my book of recipes and a nice use of hamburger. I love hamburger recipes! with prices so high, its the beef we eat the most of! Thanks for the help to my fall and winter meal planning.

"JEANNELLE" said...

Mm-m, your soup looks scrumptious! Even on this warm summer day! And, you mentioned of our favorites around here, and I need to make some soon!

Marvin said...

Sounds delicious, Pat. I love soup but do usually eat it more in fall and winter.

Suldog said...

Oh, I do so miss the amazingly wonderful vegetable soup that used to be served at Durgin-Parks in Boston. The absolute best. They took it off of the menu about ten years back now. I have no idea why.

Your recipe looks really good. I might give it a go.

Egghead said...

That looks delicious. I love soup and this looks simple to make. I bet it would be good with some type of pasta...maybe macaroni or pene. Yum

Louis la Vache said...

"Louis" invites you to visit his recipe blog.

Virginia said...

Sounds tasty but here in Alabama, the soup will have to wait till November or so.
Thanks for the recipe.

Marcos Santos said...


We winter in Brazil. A great season to enjoy this recipe. L'appetite.

Thank you very much!

Kerri said...

Sounds yummy and looks yummy too!

Flea said...

This looks yummy, but with 100+ degree days, I'm just too hot for soup. :) Watermelon - now that's the ticket!

Lara said...

yummy! I like soup a lot too!

Gallicissa said...

That looks a delicious soup Pat!
Thanks for sharing the recipe.