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I love a good bowl of soup!
I can’t think of many better things on a cold day. Especially with a chunk of crusty bread on the side and knowing my bowl of soup not only tastes great but is a nourishing bowl of goodness.
What makes it so nourishing?
Starting with a base of nutrient-rich bone broth and adding wholesome, real-food ingredients. Broth is also a great way to stretch the food budget. Broth is not a complete protein, since it only contains three amino acids. A complete protein needs to contain all B essential amino acids. Therefore, it is not a meat replacement, but it can be used as a meat extender (source). A little bit of meat goes a long way when broth is added to the picture. I make broth in my crockpot and often get several pots out of the same batch of bones. Read more here.
Soup is also a great way to use up odds and ends and can also be very versatile. With a little creativity, the same ingredients can make a variety of tasty soups and you won’t even realize you’re eating “the same old thing” again. One day, broth, potatoes, carrots, celery and a bit of meat can make a hearty and chunky stew. The next day, broth, potatoes, carrots, celery and a bit of meat can make a silky blended soup. Traditional Cooking School has an excellent article on Anatomy of a Blended Soup that you’ll want to check out to increase your soup repertoire.
During the winter we enjoy soup almost every day. During the summer we eat less soup but it still makes the occasional appearance. If your budget really needs some help, you may wish to eat soup daily as suggested in this article by The Prudent Homemaker.
Keep in mind, you want the base of your soup to be nourishing bone broth. Saving all of your bones (chicken, beef, game, etc) can make this a free food. We even make broth out of fish bones and heads!
Throughout history soup has been a way to combine edible items into a nourishing and sustaining meal. You probably know the nursery rhyme that goes, “Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old.” I heard that this was based on peasant people keeping a pot over the fire and adding to it each day to stretch their food. My limited research indicates that this is more of a hoax than a fact, but it is likely that peasant cottages did combine beans, grains, vegetables and sometimes meat into a soup or stew that was referred to as pottage. It’s not likely that the “leftovers” were kept for more than a day or two. Using the same idea from history, we’ve focused on building and keeping our food storage stocked with items that can be made in to simple and tasty stews and soups.
A few soup recipes to get you started
This is a family favorite. The recipe is based off of Black Bean Soup in Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. One thing I love about this soup is that it’s the perfect way to use up the last of the beans. It is also absolutely delicious. Equally delicious when made with pinto beans.
Go here for recipe.
This is a hearty soup. Add a little butter or ghee to increase the richness and top it with probiotic-rich sour cream. Yum! Go here for recipe.
The sky’s the limit with this soup! I’m often creating our hearty stews/soups while I’m standing at the stove. This method is a great way to use up odds and ends of meats and veggies. Go here for recipe.
This is a very tasty, easy and inexpensive soup. It is a great use for apples that are slightly past their prime. My little boy particularly loves this soup. Go here for recipe.
Duck broth is the basis of this tasty drink-from-a-mug soup. It makes a great meal starter for those trying to add more nourishing broth into the diet. Go here for recipe.
Rich and delicious! Fish Chowder is super easy to make and uses nutrient dense fish stock as the base. Go here for recipe.
A delicious curry flavored soup! Serve as a soup or over rice, spaghetti squash or something similar to soak up the yummy broth. Go here for recipe.
You know those days you need a quick meal and you have nothing planned? This delicious Egg Drop style soup saves the day! And it’s so good my son begs for it. Win! Go here for recipe.
Looking for more ideas? The book Fifty Soups by Thomas J. Murrey is an inspirational read. Originally published in 1884, it has many soups that are perfect for today. It does contain more exotic fare, like a turtle soup, but I’ve prepared a few items from it with excellent results. Fifty Soups is available in Kindle for free.
What’s your favorite soup?
Stock the Real Food Pantry
A wonderfully stocked, real food pantry will save you money, time, and give you peace of mind.
But where should you start? What if you don’t want to fill your pantry with foods devoid of nutrition? What if you prefer to focus on real, whole, or traditional foods consuming the highest quality ingredients your budget will allow? But how do you do this if your food budget is already stretched to the max?
Stocking your pantry can seem like a daunting task. This is where my handbook, Stock the Real Food Pantry, comes in. I provide details, tips, and knowledge to help you make the most of your food dollars, and begin building a pantry that will soon pay for itself in money, time, and peace of mind.