RECIPE: Warm Up With A Bowl of Homemade Vegetable Soup

The freezing temperatures have been killing me lately and all I want to do these days is curl up with a big bowl of vegetable soup.  Rather than picking some up from the store and having who knows what kinds of preservatives in them, I’m more down to make my own and control exactly what I’m eating.  I like to make a big batch of this in the morning and keep coming back to it throughout the day.

This is a super easy, chop everything up and throw it in the pot kind of recipe, and very lenient in terms of ingredients, providing a great base for a more complex soup.  Add your favorite vegetables if they’re not in here and get creative with the spices!

6 cups of vegetable broth (I used a quart container which is about 4 cups and it’s just barely enough actual soup – for more soup, use 6 cups)
1 small onion
1-2 cloves of garlic
about 1 cup celery, chopped
about 1 cup carrots, chopped
about 1 cup cauliflower, chopped into small florets
1 small serrano (or jalapeno) pepper, seeded
1 small tomato
about 1 tbsp of parsley, chopped
about 1 tbsp of basil, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

Chop everything up into rough pieces if you haven’t already.  Heat up three tablespoons of oil in a pot until shimmering, then add the onion, garlic, celery, carrots, and cauliflower.  Stir constantly until all vegetables are somewhat tender (about 10 minutes – depends on the size of your pot).

Slowly, pour in the vegetable broth.  Let boil for five minutes, then add the pepper, tomato, parsley, and basil.  Cover and continue to simmer for about 45 minutes – keep checking the pot to stir occasionally.  Serve hot – you can top with cheese, cream, or croutons.  This recipe makes about two large bowls of soup.

If you want chicken in it, go for it, and you can replace the broth with any other broth if you’d like.  For a heartier version, I added a bit of cooked pasta in at the end in one variation, and in another, added about three tablespoons of rice right after adding the broth and boiling it for five minutes.  When adding rice, remember not to go overboard, or the rice will soak up all the broth and instead of soup with rice, you’ll just have soupy rice (which is still pretty good).  Enjoy!