I went to TJ’s yesterday to get ingredients for soup (the first thing I do to get myself back on track), but alas, their truck hadn’t arrived and I couldn’t find most of my usuals (mirepoix, cauliflower, etc.). So I decided to change-it-up (leeks, parsnips, etc.)… and who knew, it turned out to be a big hit! (even with picky one and two) BTW – if you’re not buying TJ’s mirepoix (chopped onions, carrots, and celery), you should be!
You can mix and match veggies and liquids, and even seasonings—just use this as a base if you like. But then you can’t throw me under the bus if it doesn’t turn out delish (wink) Would you believe that I can’t use emoticons because wordpress literally obliterates every single word I type following it. Yup, I’ve lost entire posts because of one cute little wink or smile. (Argh)
And the secret ingredient is…
If you’ve been following me you’ll know that my usual secret soup ingredient is curry powder, but since I love the taste of Good Seasons Italian Dressing (made with balsamic vinegar = huge yum) I thought… hmmm… I wonder how this would be in my soup? And it’s a big thumbs up. (New secret ingredient!)
And PLEASE peeps, taste, taste, taste, and season, season, season! You have to taste your food to know if it’s going to be delicious—so taste it along the way and add more salt and pepper if necessary. If it’s too acidic add a pinch of sugar. (I’m sure you won’t need any for this soup though because the squash and carrots are sweet) And if you wanted to garnish it with parmesan cheese, go for it!
My little one prefers it pureed (she drinks it out of a cup with a straw), so I use an immersion blender and add some back to the soup to thicken it. (Much easier and less mess than a blender or food processor)
Our Costco has immersion blenders for a steal, or you can find good ones on Amazon >>
Anyway… without further ado, here’s my latest soup recipe. (Check out my YouTube channel for my other version with curry as the secret ingredient. And check out my Butternut Squash and Apple Soup for another quick soup idea)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 leeks, thinly sliced diagonally
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 carrots, peeled and diced
- 3 parsnips, peeled and diced
- 4 zucchini (baby marrow), diced
- 5 cups (2 small bags) butternut squash, small cubes
- 1/2 cup diced or crushed canned tomatoes (didn’t use juice because lots of broth, but if you like things more tomato-ey you could use a bit of the juice as well)
- one packet Good Seasons Italian Salad dressing (optional)
- one box low sodium chicken broth (or to keep it vegetarian just use two boxes vegetable broth)
- one box hearty vegetable broth
- one can great northern beans, rinsed and drained
- kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
- Saute leeks in a large dutch oven in a little olive oil over low heat, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook until fragrant, stirring often, about 30 seconds.
- Add vegetables and then broth to cover. Season with salt and pepper.
- Turn up heat and bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer uncovered about 45 minutes until veggies are tender.
- Add beans and simmer just until heated through.
- Remove 1/3 soup to a bowl and puree with immersion blender (one of my favorite kitchen tools) - this will thicken your soup. Or if desired you can puree all of it.
- Garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese if desired for extra yummy-goodness!
- (THE NUTRITIONAL INFO IS WAYYY OFF ON THIS - something wrong with the plugin. But you can obviously see from the ingredients that it's healthy, low fat, and low calorie!)