Friday, December 12, 2008

Soup Weather

It's rainy and cold here in the PacNW (though positively tropical compared to the Midwest), which makes me really hanker for some tasty soup. As a vegetarian, I have alot of pet peeves regarding soup (well, I have alot of pet peeves in general but whatever), and thus it makes finding good soup much more difficult. Here are the highlights:

1. First, the vast majority of mainstream restaurant/deli soups aren't even vegetarian! Even the seemingly vegetarian ones are made with chicken or beef broth, which seems completely stupid for two reasons: chicken and beef broth are the same price as veggie broth, and by needlessly meatifying an otherwise vegetarian soup you are excluding a pretty sizable customer base! And even if it absolutely has to be chicken flavored, they sell that chicken broth powder in every bulk section thats vegetarian.
2. When soups are vegetarian, they frequently are pretty boring. I mean, sometimes I really crave a big hot bowl of tomato basil, but generally it's just the few usual suspects (tomato, minestrone, vegetarian vegetable if you're lucky), so they get old fast. For instance, I am so completely over Olive Garden minestrone. I don't even go there that often, but that is the only vegetarian soup they have so I end up getting it basically every time. Same goes for canned soups - there aren't alot of options, unless you want to spring for the really pricey stuff, which is dumb because at that point you should just make your own.

Anyway, I concluded today that I need to make a big pot of something delicious and comforting for a quiet Friday night in with the BF. I settled on the tomato rice soup found in Veganomicon, which features navy beans and roasted garlic. Well, mine features white beans and sauteed garlic, actually. Since we're moving in about a month, I'm currently trying to work my way through our pantry, so I made a few changes to the recipe.

What I ended up with is a pretty bastardized version of the original, but is just as delicious, I think.

Original recipe = 56 oz. crushed tomatoes, roasted garlic, navy beans
My version = 14 oz. crushed tomatoes, 4 fresh food-processed Roma tomatoes, 1 can Campbell's tomato soup, 1 can Progresso tomato basil soup, sauteed garlic, canned white beans

Yum yum! It turned out great! And it made a ton so I can eat it all weekend with the rosemary olive oil bread I purchased to accompany it.

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