Monday, January 19, 2015

Dirt to Table Experiences: Old-Fashioned Vegetable Beef Soup

A walk through my winter garden beds reveal damaged leaves from late evenings of below freezing temperatures, soggy root systems caused by the deluge of rain that quickly followed.  A bed of stunning bok choy was given up as a sacrifice to save my large head cabbages from pesky garden pests.  Mother Nature was not kind this season.  I have put my hands up and surrendered to her wrath.  As a tease to call me to the spring garden she left a few gems of cabbage, broccoli and carrots untouched in the garden.

One of the most amazing dishes to create from seasonally available vegetables is a great pot of soup, and nothing beats a good old-fashioned vegetable beef soup.  This soup is loaded with colorful vegetables and provides comfort on a cold night, or any occasion is perfect.

The recipe below is delicious, hearty and dependable.  Don't hesitate to alter the vegetables you use in this recipe, change it up for what is locally available or in season.

Vegetable Beef Soup
Makes 6 hearty servings

1 lb. ground chuck
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
3 cups chopped green cabbage
4-5 medium carrots sliced (thick cut) 
1 yellow or red bell pepper, diced
1 cup cut green beans frozen or fresh
2 cups fresh broccoli florets
2 teaspoons, each dried oregano, basil and thyme
2 cups peeled and diced russet potatoes
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
4 cups low-sodium beef broth
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a Dutch oven or large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat, add beef, brown, and transfer cooked hamburger to a bowl and set aside.

Add onions and garlic to the Dutch oven and sweat over medium heat until softened, 5 minutes.  Stir in cabbage, carrots, bell pepper, celery, basil, thyme and oregano. Partially cover and cook until vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes.

Stir in broth, tomatoes, broccoli florets, green beans and Worcestershire sauce.  Bring soup to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer partially covered until potatoes are tender, 15 minutes.

Serve now or later. You can even freeze it.



Rambling Tart said...

Mmm, I do love a good beef veggie soup. :-) Mother Nature was not kind in my garden last year either. Ayiyi. But today I got out there and tore out all the damaged, ravaged, trampled, and battered plants and started over, mulching and protecting the survivors, putting in new beauties that got a good start in pots. I'm sore and tired but happy. :-)

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

What a beautiful and comforting soup. You're right - there's nothing better than a warm bowl of beef vegetable soup.

From the Kitchen said...

I have had thoughts of going an entire winter with just soups. Vegetable soup would be high on the menu list. It is so adaptable. Your bowl looks delicious!


The JR said...

my winter garden is looking really sad right now too...

Big Dude said...

That is a fine looking bowl of soup Velva - very hardy indeed. Sorry to hear of your garden issues. If your brassicas are being attacked by cabbage looper worms you might try covering them -

We Are Not Martha said...

I love when a soup has TONS of good stuff in it. This is perfect!


~~louise~~ said...

My entire yard is looking pretty sad right now, Velva. what a wonderful surprise it must have been to be able to find some hidden harvests. You sure did put them to good use too, your soup looks warm and comforting. I love that there is so much color in it. It seems everything is brown and white this time of year.

Thanks for sharing, Velva...

Kitchen Belleicious said...

i am loving how chunky and meaty your vegetable soup is. I need a good balance btw the broth and the meat/veggies and this looks perfect

chow and chatter said...

looks great and sorry for the veggies you lost

Betty said...

Perfect soup for perfect soup weather! I only had a tiny garden this year, and it's completely kaput. Can't wait to get started again in spring! :)

farmlady said...

This is my kind of soup. Perfect winter dinner.

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Even though nature has not been kind to your garden I still envy what you were able to harvest at this time of year. What a perfect way to use vegetable odds and ends to create a delicious bowl of beef vegetable soup!

Pam said...

Nothing much beats a good vegetable soup with beef and yours sounds delicious. It's perfect comfort food!

Lavender and Lime ( said...

To me, soup is the mainstay of my winter kitchen! So nice to meet you :)

Erica said...

What a comforting dish, Velva! Perfect for a cold day!

Tina said...

Velva, I know you have a good plan for a Spring garden. That soup works for me any time of the year, love soup. I use my mom’s old recipe for vegetable soup and it’s a favorite at our house. Will try yours here, it’s quite similar. Hope you are well.

Chris said...

Your gardens are doing far better than ours....namely because we pretty much just tilled ours under.

Angie's Recipes said...

Hearty and delicious ... a perfect winter soup!

Kim said...

I am so inspired by your dirt to table experiences, Velva. I have been craving a really great beef stew and this hearty version is calling my name right now. Wish I could reach in and satisfy that craving :)

Unknown said...

Bought my daughter a soup pot, sent her this recipe!

Karen Harris said...

I agree! Nothing better than a pot of vegetable soup. It is the definition of comfort food.

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