Today my son wasn’t feeling well, so I wanted to make a soup to nourish him and make him feel loved 🙂 Don’t you like it when people do things for you when you are sick?! It isn’t very often that we get sick around here so it is kind of a big deal that one of us isn’t feeling well. This particular son ate something completely “un-nourishing” the day before he got sick, so it didn’t take me by surprise that his defenses to germs were down.
We have an abundance of fall garden produce to be using up this winter, so I started with scrubbing and dicing a bunch of red potatoes ( I had a helper). We call them Erda Reds because they were grown here in Erda, UT and they are sooo good. We used to grow them in our garden but now my boys help the next door farmer grow them in his big field. We get blessed that way with potatoes and corn every year. We get food and my boys learn the value of work. It’s pretty fun actually. Much of the community pitches in on the harvest, so it is like a big party. I love the family feeling of a tight-knit group of people.
The reason I don’t peel the potatoes is because most of the nutrition is within the outer 1/4 inch. The same with carrots, we just scrub them in clean water and cut the bad parts off.
We brought a few onions in from cold storage that we grew this year and some carrots. We did not grow these carrots. I am making my way through a bag I got a good deal on, then we will start digging up the ones we grew this past summer. We leave our carrots in the ground and dig them up as we need them through the winter. We put a layer of hay on top of them to insulate and make them easy to find. If I had a better cold storage situation I would dig them in the fall, but this works for now.
I got the potatoes, onions and carrots cut up and barely covered with water. I brought it to a boil and let it boil for 10 minutes. This might vary in different altitudes. I know potatoes take about 20 minutes to boil, so I cut that time in half. When that time was up I added some leeks and celery. They don’t take as long to soften as the harder veggies. I let that boil another 10 minutes. FYI, I did not grow the leeks and celery! I have looked into growing them and it would be a fun project someday when life slows down for me. Will it ever slow down???
Leeks get a bunch of dirt inside them as they grow, so I cut them up and then rinse them in a strainer. I have to wash my cutting board afterwards too. I like that there is dirt. It reminds me that food comes from the earth and is not sterile 🙂 I remember eating spinach from the garden of my childhood in Wyoming. It was very sandy there and we could never get the sand completely out of the spinach. Maybe now that I have a few techniques up my sleeve I could. I remember crunchy spinach. It was not a favorite. Obviously.
If you have not had a leek before, to me their taste is between a mild onion and cabbage. They are super yummy in soups or sauteed. The French use them in detoxification soups – so I’ve read. Please comment below if you are French and know more info.!
When the veggies were the right texture ( I use a fork to stab a couple of unsuspecting boiling spuds), I turned the heat off on the stove. I added some Vegesal (Spike) which adds flavor without too much salt, some soy sauce, and some vegetable Better Than Bouillon. I added some links so you can see what I am talking about. Maybe you will click them and support my family! 🙂
To finish up the soup I added some frozen peas. This does 3 great things.
- It cools down the soup so we can eat it sooner.
- It adds even more vitamins.
- It adds more texture, color and flavor!
I also love that it does not over cook the peas. Who wants to eat smooshy dull colored peas? Eew.
And so, voila, we have a filling and tasty garden soup in not much time at all. I took some to my son who is not feeling well. He was laying on a couch in his room looking quite miserable. We have a rule in our house that if you are sick you only eat fruits or vegetables to help your bodies detox and heal quicker. He had not eaten anything yet and was quite hungry. He gobbled the soup and came out of his room for the first time all day and got some more!
My other sons gave me good feedback on it too. I heard lots of “yum”s upon first tastings. That makes a mom’s heart feel good, especially knowing that we did our part in growing the food so we know what went into it, and knowing that my family is getting nutritious wholesome food. I love that they are so used to eating this way that there is no resistance. I know families who do not eat vegetables 🙁 I can’t imagine that dull existence!
As I was cooking I was putting scraps into a bowl for our chickens. I don’t eat eggs anymore but my boys and husband do, so we raise them to keep the eggs as fresh and nutritious as we can. I have read not to give onions or garlic to chickens because it alters the flavor of the eggs. We have not found that to be true. My family likes them just fine. My sister told me that her research told her to make sure we DO give onions and garlic to the chickens because they boost their immune systems just like they boost ours. I trust her judgement. That reminds me, I should have added garlic to the soup. Maybe I’ll go put some in the leftovers for eating tomorrow…
Now I will go add some garlic and put the soup in mason jars. I use mason jars these days because they are cheap, glass, and are tall so they don’t take up so much room in the fridge. I have been making big pots of various soups and eating from it for a few days at lunch. It keeps the decision making and the prep down at lunch time. I love good hacks like that. In the summer it is salad makings that I prep ahead of time.
Till next time,
Happy and Healthy,