Thursday, July 11, 2013

Veggie Tray Soup

Well we are moved into our new home.  My husband and I are so happy that we were able to sell our two bedroom home and find a beautiful three bedroom home in the neighborhood we wanted.  Now that we are mostly unpacked and had one casual backyard party I am back to my favorite hobby!  Freezer Cooking!  I can't tell you how much Subway sandwiches we have eaten in the last four months.  We absolutely love Subway, but we both miss having home cooked meals around the table.
So here is one that I have been meaning to try for years.  After our Independence Day party we had lots of food leftover.  But after many days of burgers, pasta salad, taco salad and potato chips we still had a lot of veggies left over from our veggie tray.  I don't want them to go to waste so I whipped up a veggie tray soup.  It has the consistency of a bisque.  It has a ton of flavor and not too many calories. 
1/2 cup carrot sticks
1/2 cup celery sticks
2 C broccoli florets
2 C cauliflower
1/2 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
32 oz fat free, low sodium chicken broth
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese
4 Tbsp margarine
4 Tbsp all purpose flour
1 Tbsp black pepper
1 Tbsp all purpose seasoning
1 Tbsp fresh or dried parsley
In a large saucepan melt the 4 Tbsp margarine.  Set up a large cutting board and chop the veggies and add them to the pan in this order...onion, celery, carrot, garlic.  Sauté until the root vegetables start to get tender.
Add 4 Tbsp flour and stir well.  Once you can no longer see bright white flour slowly stir in the chicken broth.  This is how it looked half way through adding the chicken broth.
Drain the can of diced tomatoes and add to the pan.  Lastly chop the broccoli and cauliflower into bite sized pieces and add to the pan. 

 Put a lid on the pan and simmer for 5-6 minutes.  You just want to take the crunch off the broccoli and cauliflower without turning them into mush.
Shred the 8 oz of sharp cheddar and slowly stir into the soup.  Add pepper and all purpose seasoning and fresh or dried parsley to taste.  I did not need to add any salt because the cheddar is quite salty.
I make two quarts of soup.  Yum!
It's creamy and hearty...I can't wait to have some for dinner.  Feel free to throw in some leftover grilled chicken or steak from your summer parties.  It turns a dried out tray of vegetables into something moist and delicious. 
Give it a try with your party leftovers and let me know how it turns out.
Christie aka Keeza