I woke up this morning to snow. Snow this early? It’s going to be a long winter. So I did what anyone with winter experience would do, I got out the stock pot and set a pot of soup to simmer.
Today it was squash soup, just because I had a butternut squash and some sweet potatoes. It could have been corn chowder or potato soup. There are still chickens in the freezer, I could have made chicken soup, saved the breast meat for a casserole and had extra stock saved for the next snow day. Or cold day, or I want soup day. If I’d read the weather report and saw snow coming I could have set a pot of beans to soak yesterday for bean soup or chili. Or combined with the chicken for white chicken chili. The possibilities are endless with a few ingredients in the pantry along with what’s at hand to throw in.
I’m big on throwing in whatever I happen to have instead of following a recipe to the letter. Anything that saves me a 40 mile round trip to the grocery for that one item I didn’t have the recipe swears is vital to the final outcome is a win for me.
This is the first year everything in my herb garden is thriving and I’m loving walking 3 steps out the door and picking a handful of parsley, chives, sage, oregano or thyme to add fresh flavor to whatever I’m cooking. I potted up a Simon and Garfunkel garden in a sheep protein tub to have for the winter. Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme along with a nasturtium for a bit of color will be even closer to the kitchen when frost and snow finally shut down fresh herbs for the winter. So I can still throw whatever looks and sounds good in soup until everything greens up again in the spring, which is looking very far away with the snow falling and sticking to the trees today.
What’s your favorite snow day soup?
1 carton of chicken stock, broth or bone broth along with enough water to cover the vegetables in your stock pot.
1 butternut squash, peeled, cored and cubed
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 or 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 carrots, peeled and sliced (I don’t usually put in carrots but I had plenty so why not?)
Fruit, this is where I get really imprecise. I’ll put in peeled, cored and quartered apples or pears. Today I opened a can of pears because I had some. But it can be whatever you like or have on hand.
Chopped handful of parsley and chives
8 or so chopped sage leaves
1 teaspoon nutmeg
Throw it all in your stockpot and simmer until vegetables are tender and puree with an immersion blender or food processor or just a plain old potato masher. The consistency will be a bit lumpy but it will still taste fabulous.
I have butter out to soften to make biscuits to serve with the soup