This time of year we have a whole harvest of vegetables available to us. If you are like me and find that you have little bits of several veggies sitting in your kitchen (or partial bags of frozen vegetables in your freezer), there is no better way to make use of them, than an easy and delicious vegetable soup.
I started mine with a typical mirepoix…which is just a fancy French word for onion, celery and carrots. Dice them up to whatever size suits you and throw them in a soup pot with a little olive oil and a small sprinkle of salt. Allow to cook until they are just tender.
Add whatever broth you have handy. I would typically use vegetable broth for a vegetable soup, but today I didn’t have any. I did however have not-chicken broth, so I used that with a nice squeeze of tomato paste. You can really use whatever you want here, as long as you like the taste of it. I used a boxed broth, but you could use bouillon cubes or bouillon paste… One of my favorite additions to vegetable soup is V8 juice. A good cup or two added to the broth adds great flavor, gives the broth a thicker consistency and adds a great amount of extra veggie goodness!
Flavor it up with whatever herb mixture you prefer, just add slowly and taste as you go. You can always add more, but you can’t remove it! I used Italian flavors - dried oregano, basil, rosemary and marjoram. You could easily spice it up a little with some cayenne pepper or go in a whole different direction and add cumin and chili powder.
I decided to add a little pasta to mine, mostly because I had an open box in the panty I want to use up. I brought the soup up to a boil and added the pasta, cooking it right in the broth. Since I didn’t overcook my veggies in the first step, I know they won’t get too mushy. I also have some other additions I want to add to give my soup a little more body. I had some broccoli and a couple tomatoes, so I chop those up and add them right at the end of my pasta cooking time. I also throw in a handful of garbanzo beans for a little protein addition. If you have partial bags of frozen veg you want to use up, this would be the perfect time to add them. I shut off the heat and let the soup cool for a bit.
My favorite thing to do on a Sunday is to cook a soup to serve later in the week when we are busy and have difficulty finding time to cook dinner. This soup is going to go into the refrigerator to await its turn as dinner later this week.
Serve it up with some nice warm rolls or crusty bread...and viola you have a meal. I promise, it certainly beats anything Cambell's has to offer!
Today, make nourishing yourself a priority!
Tracy Martorana is a Nutrition & Wellness Consultant, Meditation Instructor and Herbalist...hoping to inspire you to live your life from a place of Holistic Wellness.