Cheesy cheeseburger soup, Italian wedding soup, The best gumbo

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There’s nothing like a good bowl of homemade soup. See if you like these.
Cheesy cheeseburger soup
4 small potatoes, peeled and diced
1 small white or yellow onion, chopped
1 C shredded carrots
1/2 C diced celery
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried parsley
3 C chicken broth
1 lb. lean ground beef
3 TBS butter
1/4 C all-purpose flour
2 C milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 pkg. (16 oz.) Velveeta processed cheese, cubed, or 2 C shredded cheddar cheese.
Place potatoes, onions, carrots, celery, dried basil and parsley in a large crock pot. Pour chicken broth over vegetables. Cover with lid. Cook on low heat 6 to 8 hours or on high heat 4 to 5 hours or until potatoes are tender.
About 45 minutes before serving, cook and crumble ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Drain any grease. Pour cooked ground beef into crock pot. Carefully wipe out hot skillet with a paper towel then add butter. When butter is melted, whisk in flour and cook until golden brown and bubbly (about 1 minute.) Whisk in milk, salt and pepper. Pour mixture into crock pot and stir to combine everything. Add cubed Velveeta cheese or shredded cheese to crock pot. Stir again. Cover with lid and cook another 30 minutes or until cheese is melted.
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Italian wedding soup
For meatballs:
1 lb. ground beef
1 small onion, grated
4 TBS grated Parmesan cheese
2 TBS Italian bread crumbs
1-½ tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. salt
2 egg whites
For chicken:
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
For soup:
2 TBS unsalted butter
1 small yellow onion, diced small
2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 ribs celery, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
12 C chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
¾ C acini di pepi or other small pasta
8 oz. fresh spinach, chopped
Combine all ingredients for meatballs and shape into small (½-in.) balls. Place on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Meanwhile, place chicken breasts in a large stockpot and fill with water until it is covering chicken by at least one inch. Bring to a boil and cook until chicken is completely cooked through, about 15 minutes. Turn off heat and use tongs to remove chicken to a large plate. Shred chicken and set aside. Empty water from stockpot.
Melt butter in the now-empty stockpot over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrot and garlic, and cook until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for approximately 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Gently add meatballs to soup and cook for 7 minutes. Add pasta and cook for an additional 6 minutes. Add spinach and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Add shredded chicken. Cover again and allow to simmer for another 30 minutes or so. You can eat as soon as chicken is re-heated, but allowing it to simmer for a little longer allows all the new flavors to meld together.
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The best gumbo
¼ C canola oil
8 oz. smoked sausage
2 lbs. chicken skinless chicken thigh
½ C flour
¼ C unsalted butter
1 medium green bell pepper diced
1 medium onion diced
1 C chopped celery (about 3 sticks)
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 14-oz. can tomatoes (chopped)
½ lb. crab legs
1 TBS Creole seasoning
½ TBS smoked paprika
1 TBS chicken bouillon powder or 1 cube
1 TBS thyme, fresh or dried
2 bay leaves
1 lb. shrimp (peeled and deveined)
¼ C chopped parsley
2 green onions chopped
1 TBS gumbo file
10 C cooked rice
Lightly season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil over medium heat in a skillet add chicken cook until browned on both sides and remove. Add sausage and cook until browned, and then remove. Set aside.
In a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed saucepan, combine melted butter, oil and flour until smooth. Cook on medium heat, stirring continuously, for about 20-30 minutes or until it turns a rich dark brown color – just like chocolate. Don’t walk away from stove during this process. It might burn. When you have achieved your desired color, remove from stove and let it cool.
Return Dutch oven back on stove. Add onion, garlic, green pepper and celery and cook for 8- 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Then add chicken, sausage, crab legs, creole seasoning, chicken bouillon or cubes, paprika, thyme and bay leaves, and let it cook for 5 minutes. Followed by a can of tomatoes and about 6 cups of chicken stock, bring to a boil and let it simmer for about 45-50 minutes. Add shrimp, simmer for 5 more minutes.
Stir in file powder, green onions, and chopped parsley. Adjust thickness of soup and flavor with broth or water and salt.
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Thought – People who are well-liked, ask for nothing, laugh at themselves, listen with interest, rarely complain, inspire others plus they teach and give freely of their time.
If you would like to share a recipe with me, just send it to the J-T or email it to me.
Hundreds of former recipes are available at marysvillejt.com. Just click on community and then on favorite fare.
(Melanie Behrens – melb@marysvillejt.com)



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