May 3, 2010

Soups & stews

Even though it's in the 80s today and incredibly humid, I have some delicious soup recipes to share. Soups/stews are among my go-to comfort foods; they're so versatile, heartwarming, and a great way to use up produce that's on its way out. The first I made is a favorite in my Italian family, pasta e fagioli.

Slow cooking away.

Crock pot pasta e fagioli


- 2 15oz cans of tomato sauce
- 2-3 cups vegetable stock
- 1 15oz can red kidney beans
- 1/2 cup pasta, preferably a small shape (I used whole wheat macaroni)
- 1/2 onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1 stalk celery
- 1-2 cups swiss chard, chopped
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1/4 cup fresh basil
- Pinch red pepper flake
- S&P, to taste


- Saute onions, garlic, celery and pepper until translucent. Add to crockpot.
- Add remaining ingredients (except pasta) to crockpot. Turn on high. Let cook for 7-8 hours.
- During the last 30 minutes of cooking, add pasta.
- Ladle into bowls, top with vegan parmesan and enjoy!

This made a lot of soup, perfectly delicious and comforting soup. Seriously, this is my favorite soup of all time. Not only is it beyond easy, but it reminds me of home and the people I love.

The other I made is a spicy, hearty stew.

Moroccan spiced bean & vegetable stew

- 1/2 dry adzuki beans, soaked overnight
- 1 sweet potato, cubed
- 1 zucchini, cubed
- 1 bell pepper
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 stalk celery
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 15oz can tomato sauce
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- Spice mixture*
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1-2 tbsp fresh mint
- S&P, to taste

- Soak beans overnight in 2 cups water. Add beans and soaking liquid in a pot and allow to cook for 40 minutes.
- In a large pot, saute garlic, onions, and celery until translucent.
- Add stock, tomato sauce, tomato paste, spice mixture, and sweet potato. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to medium-low.
- After 5 minutes or so, add zucchini, peppers, beans, herbs and S&P. Cover and allow to simmer for at least 20 minutes or until vegetables are soft and stew has reached desired thickness.
- Serve alone or on top of couscous and enjoy!

* Spice mixture consisted of 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp tumeric, 1 tsp ginger, 1 tsp paprika and 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, dry toasted in a pan for a couple minutes until the mixture darkens one shade and you can just start to smell the spices.



It's not much to look at, but it was amazing. My roommates even commented on how amazing it smelled. The combination of spices was so fragrant but not overwhelming. I highly recommend making both of these, especially if you're like me and can eat hot soup/stew all year round.


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