Thursday, September 29, 2011

Just. . .one. . .more. . .

. . .or two more. . .

I swear, these are the LAST recipes going into this cookbook.

Beef and Barley Soup

This recipe is great if you have a chunk of tough stew meat in your freezer. You don't have to thaw the meat – just put it right in the pot. The recipe will take about 50 minutes to cook, if you use barley, but most of that time you can leave the soup unattended.

You can use any meat for this that you like, really, and you can substitute any other type of grain. The exact ingredients and measurements are entirely up to you.

Uncooked barley, or other grain
stew meat of any sort, fresh or frozen
beef or vegetable stock
(optional) chopped vegetables, such as beet, onion, carrot, or greens
salt and pepper to taste
(optional) other spices, such as Parisian Bonnes Herbes or Greek #

Put the meat, barley, and stock in a pot, and bring to a gentle boil. After a half hour or so, remove the meat from the pot and cut it into bite-sized pieces. When the barley is almost tender enough to eat, add the optional vegetables, and continue to boil until the vegetables and barley are tender. Add the optional spices, and salt and pepper to taste.

Bean and Kale Soup

If you have frozen or canned white beans on hand, chicken stock, and frozen kale, you can throw this soup together on a moment's notice. Add sausage for additional heft. Exact measurements and exact ingredients are up to you.

white beans, frozen or canned
chicken or vegetable stock
kale or other greens, fresh or frozen
(optional) fresh or smoked sausage, such as Italian, kielbasa, or chorizo
salt and pepper to taste
(optional) other spices, such as Old World Seasoning or Greek #

If using optional sausage, first crumble and brown the sausage in your soup pot over medium heat until it is cooked through. Use a little oil if using a poultry sausage, which tend to be dry. Spoon out the rendered grease, if necessary.

Add the stock and beans, and heat until a boil is reached. The add the kale – lots of it! Boil for about five minutes, or until the kale is suitably soft.

Add the optional spices and salt and pepper to taste.

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