Soup is the ultimate comfort food and with such versatility, you could make a new type of soup everyday of the winter season. Plus, with a few basic steps, soup can be a quick and easy mealtime solution.If you’re looking for less creamy soups with little extra fat, go for more of a straight vegetable puree. Tomatoes, especially, are a great way to make a low fat soup. There are two simple methods to doing this that we use even in our own homes. You know those vegetable trimmings that you’re not sure what to do with, like herb stems, tomato ends, broccoli stems and leek ends? Use them in a vegetable stock! Just add them all to a stock pot with water and herbs and boil them until they’re soft. Then puree – no chopping and virtually no mess.
Similarly, you can add all of your vegetables to a slow cooker in the morning – leeks, carrots, celery, onions, tomatoes and herbs – and let it do its thing all day, then puree the slow cooked goodness, adjust the seasoning and you’re good to go.
Keep in mind that when you’re making a vegetable stock out of pureed vegetables, you may need to strain woody vegetables like broccoli, asparagus and beets or stringy ones like celery. Whereas many other vegetables that puree smoothly, like carrots and squash, are typically fine without putting through a strainer.
You may not be aware that navy beans are a natural thickener so you can add these to the slow cooker for the day, adjust the consistency with water at the end of the day, puree the mixture and add your meat and vegetables for a creamy texture with less fat and more protein.
Of course there’s always the traditional chicken or beef stock that you can make with chicken or beef leftovers. As soon as dinner is done, put these leftovers in the stock pot and simmer with water. Then, separate the stock into even amounts and freeze for future use when you need stock for a soup recipe. This way, you control the sodium content and don’t need to worry about going to the store to get the stock.
If you’re really running low on time, you could always stop by our food shoppe to pick up one of our fresh, low fat soups and save your effort for another night.