As the calendar year winds down, I like to purge and clear out the refrigerator and ‘start fresh’ in new year. This often leads to the creation of a soup or two. Here’s one that can easily be adjusted to whatever vegetables and produce you have on hand. Here’s what I had on hand….
This is super easy to make, and really can be modified to what you, so don’t be afraid to be creative! It’s also hearty enough to be served as a main course (see below).
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
5 carrots, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 cups water
1 celery root, cubed
5 potatoes, cubed
2 bay leaves
1 bunch of beet tops, chopped
1 bunch of rainbow chard, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1.) Heat olive oil in large soup pot. Add onion, carrots and celery and saute until soft and golden.
2.) Add garlic and saute for a few minutes.
3.) Add water, celery root, potatoes and bay leaves and bring to a boil. Simmer until the root vegetables are getting tender. Depending on what you’re using, this could take 1 – 2 hours.
4.) Add the beet tops and the chard. Continue at a simmer until the dark greens are tender – anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. Add more liquid if you prefer a thinner soup, or leave as is.
5.) Salt and season to taste. Remove bay leaves and serve.
Make it a meal – quick croutons and a green salad:
– Thinly slice a small, slightly stale, baguette into rounds – stems and all – no need to waste a few day old loaf of bread. In a bowl, toss the bread with a mix of dried herbs, salt and pepper, and a few tablespoons of olive oil.
– In a large saute pan, heat an additional tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add the rounds of oil and herb coated bread, and toast on one side until brown – this won’t take long so watch carefully. Turn and toast the other side.
– Serve the soup with the toasted crouton rounds on the side and a large simple green salad.