Vegetable Soup From Scratch

I love learning new cooking techniques and recipes. I didn't see a lot of cooking growing up, so each time I learn a new skill (even the easy ones), it opens up a whole new world for me. This winter, I made my first vegetable broth. From the broth, I made a simple vegetable soup. I love any recipe that can be added to - this is no exception. Here is my Vegetable Broth + Soup Recipe, with some ideas to spice it up! xo Sarah

IMG_3040.JPG

VEGETABLE BROTH FROM SCRATCH

What you'll need: veggie scraps, water, and salt.
Veggie Scraps? If you are already cooking often, this won't be difficult to collect. Designate a gallon ziplock bag in the freezer for your scraps. As you peel and chop veggies, throw the "leftovers" into the bag and freeze. Keep collecting until you fill up your gallon bag. Here are some veggie scraps that make a great broth: onions, celery, carrots, garlic, and potato. Avoid vegetables like brussel sprouts and cauliflower, these can cause the broth to have a bitter taste.

Directions: Once you have enough frozen scraps, add them to a stock pot with water and a few pinches of salt. Bring to a boil then simmer for 20 minutes. Strain the liquid into a container and discard your boiled scraps. You can use your broth in a soup (recipe below) or freeze it up to 6 months.

VEGETABLE SOUP

INGREDIENTS:
- chopped celery
- peeled + chopped carrots
- chopped white onion
- chopped kale
- chickpeas
- chopped parley
- spices: salt, pepper, garlic
- optional ingredients: canned tomatoes, pasta, other beans, quinoa, red pepper flakes, chopped garlic, mushrooms, potatoes, zucchini 

DIRECTIONS:
1. In a crockpot or stockpot, add your broth and all non-leafy ingredients... celery, carrots, onion, chickpeas, and spices. Simmer until veggies are soft.
2. About 45 minutes before you're ready to serve, add your leafy ingredients... kale and parsley. 
3. Taste and add spices as needed. Keep in mind, every time you add more ingredients or liquid, you will need more spices.
4. Cook soup until kale softens (at least 20 minutes).

If you're wanting more than the basic recipe...

You can see there are a ton of optional ingredients listed. And there are so many more if you're feeling adventurous (think meat or bell peppers). I love the soup the way it is listed, but it is easy to kick it up a notch using red pepper flakes and other spices. Feeling the winter blues? Make this soup heavier by adding pasta or quinoa. My all-time favorite add-on (I usually have to bargain with Kyle for it) is to add a can of crushed tomatoes. After your soup is done, don't forget to freeze your leftovers in small servings for quick dinners and work lunches.