Soup's On

Is it fall weather yet where you are?  Manhattan finally got a bit of cooler weather last weekend, and the first nip in the air always makes me want to whip up a batch of homemade soup.

Adding to the soup-spiration is that with a two-week vacation on the horizon, I am on a mission to use up the veggies so that nothing goes to waste.  There were also quite a few ingredients in the freezer and cabinets approaching or well past their "best by" dates.  So we embarked on a week of random "use what we have" meals - and whenever that happens, there will probably be a lot of soup.

Even with the temp approaching 100 degrees on a recent Saturday, I made chili.  I know that chili mix would be have been perfectly fine for, oh, the next 10 years, but the package of ground beef in the freezer was almost past its prime.  I also needed to use a small package of shredded cheddar cheese that had inexplicably avoided being eaten for the last few months (in our home, cheese is almost always consumed before it can go bad).

A few days later, more soup.  Chopped cooked chicken needed to be used, and this soup is yummy with that cheddar sprinkled on top.  This is super-easy to toss together.  I have never come up with a fancy name for it, but feel free to offer suggestions in the comments.  Here's what I use:

  • 1/2 pound cooked chicken, shrimp, ground beef or other meat you have on-hand
  • One can minestrone soup
  • One can black beans, drained
  • One can whole kernel corn, drained
  • One can diced tomatoes or Rotel
  • 1 tablespoon taco seasoning mix

Toss everything into a stock pot and cook to boiling on medium-high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes, or longer if you have time (I like to cook it on the lowest setting on our slow-cooker, and let it simmer a few hours).  The longer it simmers, the better the flavor.

Happy cooking!