Monday, October 17, 2005

Making the Week Easier With Vegetable Soup

The Chickpea Nibbles weren't bad. I made two batches; one with 1 stp chili powder and 1 tbs olive oil, the other with 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 Tbs tamari, 2 tsp olive oil and 1 tsp sesame oil. I think both batches would have tasted better with more spice. Next time, I'll double the chili powder and garlic. I also thought they were too oily so I'll try using half the amount of oil. The other thing I discovered was you really want them dried out when you take them out of the oven or they have a strange texture when they cool off. They taste best crunchy. I chickened out and didn't bring them on our visit.

I was able to get our bread for the week baked yesterday, which is a huge relief. The batch of banana bread I made yesterday is already almost gone. There might be enough for school snacks for Tuesday but I'll need to come up with another breafast option. Since there are still apples, I'm leaning toward apple bread but I'll have to go on a treasure hunt to find my recipe. I don't know why but I haven't used it in a few years.

There are a great deal of veggies in the fridge including carrots, peppers, beets, turnips, cauliflower and broccoli. I also have a lot of potatoes, garlic and onions. Since the cool fall weather is here, I'm planning to make a big pot of vegetable soup today that I can use for the week. I don't mean have the same soup everyday, I mean using a basic vegetable soup as a base for a variety of soups during the week. For example, I might add rice one night, tofu another, beans on another still. If I keep the soup really basic I can change the spices each night as well. Some nights the soup may be the main course, other nights it might be a side to go along with dinner. The added bonus is it will clean out the fridge. I'll keep you posted each day about how we use it.

One note of caution, DO NOT add cauliflower and broccoli to a soup like this except on the day you plan to serve it and only right before you serve it. If cooked for a long time, they will make your soup, and your house, rather pungent. Also, I'm not kidding when I say big pot. I'll be using a 16 quart stock pot to make sure we have enough for the week.

On the frugal project front, I've got to get working on the last pair of heavy curtains for upstate. I need to have them done by Friday.


Barbara said...

I love reading about how you go about planning your meals and using up what you have in the fridge. It gives me ideas and inspiration.

Why do the curtains have to be done by Friday? Does winter show up then? ;-)


Anna said...

I really like your idea of making one pot of what is, essentially, stock, and then re-using it a variety of ways. I don't cook for a large family like you do, but your solution gave me an idea for a way to enjoy a variety of different meals during the week with a minimum of work. I will, of course, be starting out with a smaller batch of stock! :-D

Ruthie and Russell said...


Some more ideas for veggie soup: Serve it one day with corn bread, the next day, thicken it with cornstarch or mashed beans or even puree part or all of the soup, and season it differently (curry would be good) and serve over rice or pasta. If you cut your veggies thickly, you can also use some as a pot pie in a simple pie crust or with a biscut or cornbread topping or even a mashed potato topping as a shepherd's pie. My favorite use for thick, dry soup is a hot-pocket filling. You can use any simple yeast bread, roll it out and make little packets of the soup. Poke a couple holes in it and bake like normal. Super yummy! :)


Katie said...

Winter better not be here by Friday! The curtains are for the cabin and we're heading that way to insulate the attic on Friday (doesn't that sound like itchy good fun?!) We won't be up again until after Thanksgiving when the cold will really have settled in so I'm looking to finish sealing things up this weekend, hence the curtain deadline.

I'm so glad you guys find this useful/interesting. Ruthie, I'm stealing a few of your ideas, especially the hot pocket one.