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All-Day Vegetable Soup

photo of vegetable soup

All-day Vegetable Soup.

This was my “labor” on Labor Day!

I make All-day Vegetable Soup on the first cold day in the fall with the freshest vegetables from my garden or the farmer’s market if I’m out of something. A big pot of soup simmered all day tastes different from a small pot of soup cooked an hour or two.

It’s also a great day to make bread because it will rise beautifully with the steam and warmth from a big pot of soup.

Use the big canning pot that holds five gallons of liquid, add two gallons of stock you’ve made over the summer from simmering vegetables, or just use plain water.

Add, to taste:

  • garlic (I use a whole clove)
  • onion, white or yellow, one or two large ones
  • six stalks chopped celery, reserve tops for later
  • 3 lbs. chopped tomatoes
  • four cups chopped carrots
  • four cups chopped potatoes
  • four cups green and/or yellow beans snapped in 1-inch sections
  • whole small head of cabbage or half large, chopped
  • four cups slice zucchini
  • fresh corn kernels from four ears of corn
  • four cups fresh peas
  • four cups chopped broccoli
  • four cups chopped cauliflower
  • anything else you have on hand: turnips, parsnips or other root crops, brussels sprouts, collard greens, kale, mustard or other greens whatever you want in your soup
  • two cups of dried beans, can be all the same but I use a little of each kind of dried bean I have in the kitchen: kidney, pink, great northern, navy, lima, etc.
  • chopped fresh herbs like parsley, tarragon, thyme

Boil stock.

Reduce to simmer. Add dry beans.

Add chopped vegetables one by one, beginning with the firmest, like carrots, and ending with the greens.

Simmer at least two hours past the last vegetable added.

Add chopped fresh herbs, simmer one half hour more.

Let sit, covered, for about an hour.

Eat several bowls.

Let cool completely, which can take hours depending on how much you made.

Can in pressure canner or freeze in freezer containers.

Open a jar in January and remember summer.


3 responses

  1. Pingback: Farmer’s Market « Today

  2. I don’t think I’ve ever had a soup that simmered all day. I can imagine the flavors melding and blending ever so nicely. The result is no doubt a soup with a richness that is far beyond one simmered for a couple of hours. Do you soak the beans before you add them? I’m always reading about discarding the water the beans soak in.

    September 10, 2010 at 12:13 am

    • Kate, it is very different, and it only works with very fresh vegetables on a simmer or they turn to mush. While cooking always destroys a some of the nutrition, simmering with the lid on helps to keep it from escaping in the steam. I toss the dry beans in so they add a little starch to the broth, making it a little richer and more nourishing. The other key is the volume because changes in temperature happen slowly and no one ingredient can overpower the rest. That last hour of just letting it sit really settles the flavors into the broth. I prefer pressure canning to freezing because some of the vegetables soften a bit too much in the freezer, but pressure canning that much soup would take days! Pressure canning is also a little trickier than freezing. I always do this in early fall so that I always have a quick nourishing meal on hand. Most of the reason you discard the soaking water is that it helps to carry away the oligosaccharides that cause the one side effect of beans no one likes–gas–and it also washes the beans which, in processing, may have come in contact with any number of contaminants including pesticides, bacteria, insect and animal vermin and other scary things. I grow some beans or tend to get organic beans, which are usually grown and processed in smaller batches, allowing more control over environment. The long cooking period will tend to kill most nasty stuff, though soaking them prior to adding them doesn’t hurt at all. Try it this fall and see what you think! Thanks for visiting.

      September 10, 2010 at 12:32 am

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