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January 5, 2010

Hot Soup for Cold Days...

It's been wet and cold here in the wintery Pacific Northwest. Holiday feasts are over and if you're anything like me when it comes to the turkey carcass or the ham bone left over from the big meal, you've boiled it down to make soup stock. Why, yes, I come by it naturally. We've always been thrifty like that. (I think it comes from my Scottish ancestors!)

It's been in the freezer, ready for when I need to make soup or want to clean out the freezer of stock.

Here's a handy recipe for using that stock.

2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 leeks (the white part) cleaned well and diced
1 TB minced garlic
2 celery stalks, diced
1 baking potato, peeled and diced or diced fingerling potatoes.
1/4 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup frozen corn
2 qts soup stock (or chicken or vegetable broth, if you have that)

Saute leeks, carrots, garlic, and celery until softened. Add potatoes and soup stock, simmering until potatoes are tender. Add peas and corn and simmer another few minutes (10 or 15 min should do it).

You can add cooked rice or cooked pasta to the soup (2 cups).

Omit the leeks, and use shallots or a Maui Sweet Onion, or just omit entirely.

Ham stock makes a good minestrone style. Omit peas and carrots, add a can of crushed tomatoes instead. Heck, throw the corn in anyway. It's still good!

Want it creamy? Whisk 3 TB of corn starch with a cup of cream, then add to hot soup, cooking until thickened.

Enjoy! I know I will!

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