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Soup's on: three easy peasy steps for making a winter favorite

I know why Andy Warhol used cans of Campbell's tomato soup for his pop art. It is a classic that most of us grew up on. To be honest, as a kid I thought that buying soup from the store was the only way to make it. soup

Step one: Open can.

Step two: Dump contents into pot. (Note: contents often were still in the shape of the can.)

Step three: Add water.

Step four: Heat soup.

As I grew up, my taste became more sophisticated. I started to buy Progresso soup. (No need to add water!) Then I switched to soups in boxes that had the word "organic" emblazoned on them. I felt so virtuous and smart but I was no closer to making my own soup. Then I noticed one day that the Pennsylvania farm that delivered in my area offered chicken stock. (Click here if you want to know the difference between stock and broth.) A friend of mine said that this farm's stock was like gold---chock-full of collagen, fats, minerals and important nutrients.

 

Me on farm delivery day!

So I was psyched. There's been a lot of hype about bone broth lately and I understand why. On top of being deeply nourishing and delicious, it helps fight colds, boosts the immune system, eases achy joints and leads to glowing skin and contributes to            vibrant health.

This "gold" stock would be the base for my homemade soup, instead of chicken bouillon cubes or the thin fat-free watery broth that is sold in grocery stores. Now I had to roll up my sleeves and get cooking. Little did I realize how simple it would be!

 

photo 2-4

Step one: Chop up whatever veggies you happen to have on hand. I've used kale, onions, carrots, mushrooms, spinach, what have you.

Step two: Toss them in the broth and simmer.

Step three: Add spices (or meats) to suit your taste on any given night. For a southwestern meal, like chicken tortilla soup, I add chicken, salsa, and paprika for a kick. (Right before serving, we add chips, avocado, and shredded cheese.) For an eastern-inspired Thai-like dish, I add chicken, coconut milk and lime or lemon juice.

We have been drinking soup this winter like there's no tomorrow. I want to keep plying us with the good stuff, so when my family tires of soups, I use the stock (in place of water) when I make rice, or I use it as a base for chili.

The finished product last week: Chicken tortilla soup a la Hilda!

I am not there yet. My goal is to make stock from the chicken itself. (If you're ready to make your own stock, check out Sally Fallon's recipe from The Nourishing Traditions cookbook!) If you've done it already, tell me all about it. Let's spur each other on in making tasty soups this winter and nourishing our families to the best of our abilities!

Thinking about…thinking, Part I

"Mom, stop making us healthy!"