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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Cream of Vegetable Soup

Staying with a theme and having soup again. This one can be completely vegetarian by using vegetable bouillon cubes or broth but it is also enriched by using chicken stock. For an entirely different take on the flavors, use some ham juices (or just put a "leftover" ham bone at the beginning, to simmer along with all the rest of the ingredients.

Cream of Vegetable Soup

canola oil for sauteing
1 large onion, chopped
1 large stalk celery, diced
2 large potatoes, diced but not peeled
3 c finely shredded cabbage
3 bouillon cubes OR 1 to 2 c rich chicken stock
water
2 T Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 t mixed dried herbs (basil, thyme, rosemary and marjoram)
seasoning salt to taste
8 to 16 oz mixed frozen vegetables of your choice
2 to 3 c chopped fresh spinach (OR 10 to 16 oz frozen chopped spinach)
1/4 to 1/3 c c flour
2 c nonfat dry milk powder
1 to 2 t balsamic vinegar

Saute the onions and celery in a small amount of oil over medium heat until the onions are golden.

Meanwhile, put the bouillon or stock, Worcestershire sauce and herbs in a large pot. Add the potatoes and cabbage and enough water to cover the vegetables well. Stir in the onions when sauteed and cook on low to medium heat until the cabbage and potatoes are very tender, about 45 to 50 minutes.

Mix the flour and dry milk powder well and stir in about 2 cups of water. Blend to make a smooth mixture and gradually pour into the soup. Continue stirring until the mixture returns to a low boil and is thickened. Taste and add seasoning salt and vinegar as needed. Stir in the frozen mixed vegetables and spinach (and additional water or broth if the soup is too thick) and continue cooking for about 20 to 25 minutes, until the mixture has returned to a gentle simmer.

Serve with freshly ground pepper and grated cheddar or Parmesan cheese if desired.

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