Friday, June 15, 2012

Back to the basics


When we first began to eat wheat and dairy free, I was amazed by the ingredients that I was finding as I perused the labels on items that we regularly bought.  Not only could I not identify or pronounce several of the ingredients, but I was surprised to find that wheat and dairy were hiding in boullion cubes (and all sorts of other precarious places)!  I realized that I needed to go back to cooking with the basics--look for foods in their natural forms and cook from there. 


Pickle's Vegetable Soup:

5 small potatoes, diced
2 cups cut carrots
1 cup chopped celery
5-6 cups fresh diced tomatoes (or 26 oz. canned)
3 cups + of water
1 tsp. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. salt

1.  Combine potatoes, carrots, celery, tomatoes, spices and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 30 minutes.

2.  Cut a 2 lb chuck roast into bite sized cubes and cook in 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a skillet. Season with 1/4 t. garlic powder, salt and pepper. Cook until just done--don't overcook. Add meat and drippings to the soup.

3.  Simmer gently until vegatables are tender, usually about 1 hour.

4.  Add a small bag of frozen mixed vegatables or about a cup of frozen peas and a cup of frozen green beans. Cook until heated through.

*This freezes really well in individual portions!

*Any cooked ground meat can be substituted for the roast. 

*In some tomato-based soups, the acidity of canned tomatoes may seem to lend an almost bitter flavor.  I sometimes add a pinch of natural brown sugar to balance.  Shhhh, don't tell!

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