Tuesday, February 5, 2013

It's the time of the year for...soup!

What a great time of year for soup!  ...Well, unless you live where it is perpetually warm--then you might not care so much.  But for many of us, it's cold, rainy, snowy, chilly, damp or maybe downright freezing.  During the fall and winter and even the chilly beginning of spring, soups and stews find their way to our home table quite often. Rich, nourishing homemade broths fill the tummy, warm the body and and soothe the soul.

I recently read a short article in Consumer Reports about Campbell's new kettle style soups. The suggested retail price is $3.99 for just 15.5 oz.*  My goodness, the price! 

Soups are generally easy to make, and soup is more often than not quite frugal.  Don't throw down big bucks for it; instead, learn to make your favorite soups.  Many soups will freeze well,** so make a big batch for dinner and freeze the extra in one large meal-sized portion or in several small individual servings, depending on what you need.  And instead of one cup (8 oz) of soup containing 1/3 of your daily sodium intake (as those kettle soups do), you control the salt by salting to taste and using quality, real salt with minerals.

Homemade soups can easily surpass any store-bought soup in nourishment, cost and flavor! 

Back in November I posted a hamburger minestrone that's absolutely delish--my kids gave it a thumbs-up!  It cooks up in less than 30 min and comes in--using organic ingredients--at just $1.30 for a 16 oz. serving.  (Compare that to the price of the kettle soup!) A favorite soup of mine is Chicken Soup with Coconut & Cabbage--a very simple soup that's a twist on plain chicken soup.  Butternut Sausage Soup is one of my husband's favorites.  The Carrot Soup pictured above is extra frugal, coming in at less than $1 for a meal-sized portion.  And later this week I will be sharing with you the recipe for a hearty beef stew with sourdough dumplings--a comfort food for sure. 

So whether you're sick or looking to make something ordinary, unique, healthy, frugal or just some good ol' comfort food, soup can be a winning choice every time.   

* Those kettle soups got pretty bad ratings, by the way, both in flavor and nutrition.

** I've found that milk-based soups do not freeze well.  The texture changes, and we don't prefer that. But vegetable soups, beef stews, chili and bean soups all freeze nicely.

Linked to Pennywise Platter.

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