Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Yummy soup recipes for those cold New England evenings.

It's that time again where I post my favorite tried and true recipes... the winter favorite here would be soups and stews. They are so easy, can be easily reheated for lunches and leftovers (or even frozen in batches, for that matter) and I typically choose the ones that are healthy... so that's a bonus. I have already tried a few new ones in the past couple of weeks (necessitated by the 30 pounds of leftover holiday hams!) and had great success. My new favorite is probably a Brazilian Black Bean Stew. Sweet potatoes, mangoes and sausage in a recipe... how could you go wrong. Colby even loved it and he hates sweet potatoes. Ariana ate quite a bit also, so that's a good sign. I got the recipe online, but I had to change a few things, so here you go:

Brazilian Black Bean Stew
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/4 pound sweet turkey sausage, sliced (use whatever sausage you like)
1/3 pound cooked ham, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 (1 pound) sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice
1 small hot green chile pepper, diced (leave out if your kids don't like spicy, I did)
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup chicken broth
2 (16 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 mango - peeled, seeded and diced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, and cook the sausage and ham 2 to 3 minutes. Place the onion in the pot, and cook until tender. Stir in garlic, and cook until tender, then mix in the sweet potatoes, bell pepper, tomatoes, chicken broth, chile pepper, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 15 minutes, until sweet potatoes are tender.
Stir the beans into the pot, and cook uncovered until heated through. Mix in the mango and cilantro, and season with salt.
My next new fave is a Pumpkin Black Bean Soup. I love pumpkin in anything and especially a nice creamy soup for the winter. Here you go:

3 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (16 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup butter
1 1/4 cups chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 cups beef broth
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1/2 pound cubed cooked ham
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons cumin

1. Pour 2 cans of the black beans into a food processor or blender, along with the can of tomatoes. Puree until smooth. Set aside.
2. Melt butter in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Cook and stir until the onion is softened. Stir in the bean puree, remaining can of beans, beef broth, pumpkin puree, cumin and sherry vinegar. Mix until well blended, then simmer for about 25 minutes, or until thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. Stir in the ham, and heat through before serving.

I didn't use nearly all of the butter, I thought it called for too much. I also let it simmer for around an hour so the cumin flavor could really be absorbed. And when it was done... SOOOO good. I also suggest adding a dollop of sour cream. This freezes well and reheats well, having an ever better flavor the next day.

One of my faves from last Year was Spinach Lentil Soup. It was a hit all around, due to the fact that everyone here loves kielbasa.Maybe cut back on the kielbasa or go with a nice lowfat turkey version if you want to save some fat and calories. Here you go:
Spinach Lentil Soup
1/3 cup uncooked white rice
2/3 cup water
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
4 ounces turkey kielbasa, chopped
1 onion, minced
1 carrot, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
6 cups water
2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1 cup dry lentils
1 (10 ounce) bag fresh spinach, torn
In a pot, bring the rice and water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, and cook the turkey kielbasa until lightly browned. Mix in onion and carrot, and season with red pepper. Cook and stir until tender. Pour in the water and broth, and mix in lentils. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 25 minutes.
Stir the cooked rice and spinach into the soup, and continue cooking 5 minutes before serving.

And one of my easiest favorites is a Frogmore Stew, with only 5 ingredients. If you love seafood- try this:
8 cups water
1/4 cup Old Bay Seasoning TM
1 pounds new red potatoes
1 pounds hot smoked sausage links, cut into 2 inch pieces
4 ears corn - husked, cleaned and quartered
1 pounds large fresh shrimp, unpeeled

Bring water and Old Bay Seasoning to boil in a large stockpot.
Add potatoes and cook for 15 minutes. Add sausage and cook for 5 minutes more. Add corn and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir in the shrimp and cook until shrimp are pink, about 5 minutes. Drain immediately and serve.

Do you have any favorite soup recipes? I love trying new recipes (especially family friendly ones!)


  1. I made potato soup last night and tried something new. I caramelized the onion and garlic and skipped the celery. I just poured in some chicken stock, boiled the potatoes, thickened it up with some instant mashed potatoes (I like my potato soup to basically just be runny mashed potatoes, you can always use corn starch or flour).

    I had a bowl of it for dinner last night, and added in some chopped broccoli so it's different for dinner tonight.

    The boys hate potatoes, so I'm going to work through this pot of soup all by my lonesome. I really don't mind though!

  2. I could live on black bean soup - its one of my favorite things to make in bulk!! I will have to try your recipe next!!

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