Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Soups? Anyone want Soups?

loading ...  ~Robert Stock

I've made two most wow-wee soups this week! 
Here is the base for the one from last night, Soup 1: 
Vegan Zuppa Toscana soup

Our little red hen was watching through my kitchen window and she just wanted to say Hey to you!

It was good. A very hearty soup, I made a bit more then what was called for using two entire boxes of vegetable broth and two cups of unsweetened almond milk instead of one.  I also threw in a couple more potatoes. I used a bag of frozen kale as well....now that is some goood stuff to have on hand.

For my veggie Italian sausage?  I made my own! Here is how:

 I opened up one of my organic kidney bean cans from my 99 cent store trip, drained and rinsed.  I put olive oil in a small pot or pan and put the beans in with fennel seed (to taste), garlic powder, dried basil, parsley, basil is always good, and a bit of Italian seasoning mixture (not too much on that) oregano is bossy don't ya know ; ) My Italian grandma from Naples really wasn't too keen on too much oregano....I also sprinkle salt and pepper or maybe some Tony Chachere's. A tiny bit of red pepper too.  I fried the bean mixture smashing the beans down with a mashed potato masher.  I made  one batch with some leftover white beans and both batches were grand. Black eye-ed peas would work too.  My kidney bean veggie-sausage looked like this when I was finished.
I put this in the soup and yes it did disintegrate but it still gave that Tuscan soup that most wonderful, homie Italian flavor.  I'm thinking this bean-sausage would do great as a side and hold it's shape on it's own though if serving it alone.

Option: I also offered our family some baked tofu to sprinkle on top.  I bake our tofu by first pressing tofu slices between clean dish towels and then sprinkling some Bragg's liquid aminos on it.  I buy my Bragg's from Vitacost.  Soy sauce will do if that's all you have. (EDIT 1.29: If you want it smokie, then a spattering of liquid smoke will work.)  I sprinkle garlic powder and a bit of hot sauce and I bake those slices for around 350 degrees on parchment paper to reduce clean-up. I use this parchment paper from the 99 cent store or Dollar Tree, I can afford this! : ) I turn the slices after a bit but I make sure this stuff is nice and baked...it gives it a good chew. I want the texture more chewie and less like custard. Baking time is at least an hour.

The tofu is an extra of course.

The soup was served over brown rice.


Soup 2  This soup I came up with, it's...Mrs Amelia's Italian Veggie Soup

This is very good if I might say so myself and my family is always pleased with it, I would serve this to company.
Mrs. Amelia's Italian Veggie Soup
  Here's what goes in my soup:

-2 cans artichokes w/juice   (Sometimes I find these at the 99 cent store)
-1 bag frozen spinach or kale
-1 box vegetarian broth (Sometimes I find these at the 99 cent  store)
-4 cloves garlic
-olive oil
-1 can black olives w/juice (99 cent store)
-3 tsp. dried basil  (seasonings can be found at dollar stores or walmart for way less)
-You may add sauteed squash ...or whatever veggie you like. A frozen veggie? Beans?  This soup with artichokes and spinach will stand on it's own though trust me.
-2 regular size cans of Italian tomatoes.  If you do not have Italian tomatoes just add a tiny smidgeon of Italian seasoning to regular tomatoes.

Gently simmer the garlic in a nice amount of olive oil only until fragrant!  No more!  We do not want browned garlic, it makes it bitter.  Then you can gracefully dump all the other ingredients in.  You may serve over pasta or rice and you will smile. : ) 

A little gift for you from Mrs. Amelia.  We love good ol' soups at our house and I hope you enjoy too.


  Today was a ring-tail-tooter day so this came in handy from Ann Voskamp's blog today.  Here's an excerpt:  

Days when it feels like the heat of Hades is burning blazes up your backside.
And just when you grip that blessed doorframe and the exit out, somebody slams that door hard, scrapes your fingers into a bloodied, mangled mess, and you’re left flailing like a fool in the heat and the hurt.

These days always come so downright unexpectedly too!  Sometimes life seems like a stuck zipper.  Ya know?  You pray over one situation...that seems to calm down and then the dad-blasted zipper acts up in another place!   An attack from a person who is normally so sweet perhaps...We're blindsided and sucker smacked.  These kind of days I feel like a refugee or a stage flunkie from an old 1960s Batman show.. "Zam" "Pow!"...I stumble off of the stage of life holding my jaw, tears flowing down on the inside.

Today I honestly was secretly telling God under my breath in my heart in a loud silence...

I know my photo is on Your fridge... I know it. 

I hope you all are having a sweet eve!  My precious daughters are in the kitchen performing beautiful art for supper.  Jem is at his desk designing his business site. I told him I need a million hugs today. All is well.  I can't complain.

Our doglets are in their beds keeping warm, Guisseppe's eye still healing...kitties roaming around. Fire blazing.
Hugs to you, and if you've had a rather crummy day...Remember.  God is already there.  Elizabeth Elliott wrote me that once she did.

  In the love of Christ  ~Amelia


Little Mama Mia said...

Both soups we're delish!!!

Marianna said...

I love the picture of the hen looking through the window! That is such a great shot. :D The soups were mighty good... the "Italian sausage" is such a fun idea for those of us who miss that flavor, but don't want the meat! I'd like the try some of that by itself soon. Not that the soups weren't good -- they were delicious!!

I do understand how days like that are... I have them too sometimes, but it's so good -- no, vital to remember that God is already there. That can bring us the peace we need to face anything. There have been some good "Streams in the Desert" devotionals on all that the past few days. Anyway, keeping track of all the gifts, as you are, enriches and deepens the soul during such times. Hang in there! God sees; God knows. Love you! <3

Amelia said...

Thanks Lea! I guess it was pretty good, only a few potato pieces left for the hens! : ) They liked it too! xxxooo Mom

Amelia said...

Marianna! A sweet comment! Thanks so much Marianna, yep, sometimes I want to start singing the old spiritual, Nobody's Seen the Trouble I've Seen. Ha!

You are sooo correct though. God sees all. Love the 'Streams' devotionals...soooo good.

So many Gifts to remember and keep track of...so many.
Love, Mom

Beloved's Redheaded Bride said...

She is a sweet little hen!

Those soups sound wonderful. And,lately I have been looking for soup recipes! Indeed I have!

I hope you are all well.

Amelia said...

Hi Carmen, Oh yes! You will enjoy the soups, they are both good. The one I put together (2) is very easy as well.

Everything is well, thank the good Lord. I can't complain. I hope you and yours are well too.

Yes, that hen, she is such a little pet! : )