Cheesy Veggie Soup

I linked to a broccoli cheese soup in my meal plan but then I went off-script and made my own based on what veg was wilting in my fridge. The result was fantastic so I’m writing it down so I can make it again. This soup isn’t packed full of nutrition but it’s nutritious-ish and sometimes that’s the best I can do.

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Cheesy Veggie Soup
serves 6 - 8

Ingredients

1/4 cup butter
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (if you scrape out the pulpy bits and seeds, you lose a lot of the heat)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 heaping Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups cream or whole milk
4 cups veggie broth
2 heads broccoli, finely chopped (approximately 4 cups)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 tsp yellow mustard
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Melt butter in large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, carrots, bell pepper, jalapeno, and cook, stirring often, until veg is softened, 7 - 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute or so until fragrant. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about two minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan so it doesn’t start to burn. I used my enamelled cast iron dutch oven and my flattop wooden spoon to make this soup and this combo works really well.

Add cream (or milk if using) and broth and continue to cook, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any bits stuck to the bottom (that’s where the flavour hides!) Stir in broccoli. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes until everything is sufficiently tender and soup is thickened. 

Buzz with an immersion blender until smooth (or ladle into a blender and blend until smooth, carefully because hot liquids and blenders are terrifying).

Stir in cheese, mustard, Worcestershire Sauce, and add salt and pepper to taste.

We enjoyed this topped with a little bacon and served with sourdough toast and it was decadent. Grady refused to try it but Poppy loved it. I’m not sure if it will freeze well and I don’t think I’m going to get the chance to experiment because we keep eating it.

Tortellini Sausage Soup

This soup is hearty and full of veggies. Serve it with crusty bread and it's a full meal soup. The tortellini and sausage make it satisfying and flavourful, while the veggies add a boost of nutrients so no salad is needed (I become firmly Team No Salad once the lovely summer veg is gone).

Ingredients

2 Tbsp olive oil
4 cups assorted diced vegetables (I did 1 onion, 3 stalks celery, 3 carrots, and a large handful of green beans)
300g smoked turkey sausage, sliced (I cut mine in half and then did 1/4" slices for half moons)
1 - 796mL can crushed tomatoes
4 cups vegetable stock
1 tsp dried oregano
2 cups water
1 - 350g package tortellini (I used rainbow four cheese)
2 (packed) cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
grated parmesan cheese for serving (optional)

Directions

Heat olive oil in large soup pot over medium-high heat.

Add assorted diced vegetables and cook, stirring frequently, until softened and onion is translucent (approximately 7 - 10 minutes).

Add sausage and cook for another minute or two until it starts to brown slightly.

Add tomatoes, stock, oregano, and water and bring to a boil.

Add tortellini, and cook, stirring occasionally, per directions on package (usually 6- 8 minutes). In last minute of cooking, add spinach and parsley.

Top with grated parmesan cheese and serve with crusty bread.

Serves 8.

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Tomato Soup Grilled Cheese Care Package

I show my love with food. If I love you, chances are I've cooked for you at some point. It's your birthday? Expect a cake. Going through a rough time? Cookies may show up on your doorstep. Celebrating happy news? Drinks and an over-the-top cheese plate it is. Just need a little extra love? Let's do pancakes. Food is my love language is what I'm saying.

I've been trying to think of the perfect care package and I think I've hit on the perfect combination. The tomato soup grilled cheese care package.

This Tomato Orange Soup was recommended in a Facebook Food Group I belong to and it's amazing. I double the recipe but keep the butter and salt at the single batch quantities and it's insanely delicious. It's also really easy to make (and it's even Grady-approved).

To make my tomato soup grilled cheese care package, I'd send the soup at the pre-cream stage with a carton of cream on the side (and a few quick notes on how to prepare). That way the soup can be thrown in the freezer if your care package recipient is overwhelmed with food. I'd include a loaf of nice bread, a block of butter, and some nice aged cheddar cheese. The beauty of this care package is it can easily be made into a complete meal or it can be broken down into staples if meals aren't required.

If you want to expand the package, why not send along some nice sausage or maybe some cut vegetables and fruit? Add a tray of brownies or a batch of chocolate chip cookies and you've got a nice, sweet finish.

The tomato soup grilled cheese care package is a lovely, easy way to show someone you're thinking of them and want them to feel loved and cared for. My favourite bread is sourdough just for reference ;)

Black Bean Sweet Potato Soup

This soup is quick and easy to throw together, is full of vitamins and minerals, and is comprised wholly of ingredients I always have in my pantry (a major win in my books). It can be jazzed up with shredded cheese and sour cream or left plain and simple. The recipe makes a lot but it freezes well.

Ingredients

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
4 carrots, sliced (approximately 1 cup)
1 sweet potato, finely diced (approximately 3 cups)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 x 796mL can diced tomatoes, with juice
2 x 540mL can black beans, drained and rinsed well
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Heat olive oil in large soup pot over medium high heat. Add onions, carrots, and sweet potatoes and cook until softened, 7 - 10 minutes.

Add garlic and cumin and cook, stirring constantly, for another minute or two.

Add tomatoes with their juice, beans, and broth. Bring to a boil and cook until vegetables are completely tender, anywhere from 5 - 15 minutes depending on how big you sliced your veg.

You can leave this soup as-is or you can blend all (or part) of it for a smoother consistency. I like to use my immersion blender and blend in quick bursts to end up with a sort of half-smooth-half-chunky consistency.

Serve with sour cream, shredded cheese, sliced green onions, fresh cilantro, lime wedges, hot sauce, etc. The sky's the limit.

Makes 8 servings.

Black Bean Sweet Potato Soup || Hillary with 2Ls