Thursday, October 8, 2009

Market to Table - October 8, 2009

Believe it or not, I've been eating nothing but leftovers from last week. Talk about eating well without spending an extra dime! The remnants of last week's Veg*n pot luck were quickly devoured (not local, but vegan and free - I love free...); I've finally worked my way through the last of the veggie and rice casserole I made last week with the help of my homemade, all-local italian soup; and Dave's steamed local veggies, also leftover from last week, found it's way to my tummy in the company of some local brown rice, literally the only thing I cooked this week.

In lieu of recipes of things you've found a hundred times on SGF (I know, I eat a ton of stir fries and casseroles, after all, I'm a lazy cook), I thought I might share with you the recipe for italian soup that I used the last time I used the pressure canner. I think this is my favorite of all the soups I've made over the last two years. It's great by itself, or added to a rice dish for a nice stovetop casserole.

So without any further ado, Italian soup...

SGF's Italian Soup
  • 4 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 large cucuzza squash, peeled and chopped
  • 12 large okra
  • 8 large mushrooms, chopped
  • olive oil
  • 1 pint corn
  • 1 pint pasta sauce
  • veggie broth (as much as you can get - I reserve the broth from steaming veggies)
  • water
  • Anna's herbs (a mixture of italian herbs I found at our local organic grocery)
  • salt
First, I chopped all the fresh veggies and saut├ęd them in olive oil in a large soup pot. This is what I had on hand from the farmers' market and from a neighbor's garden. Use whatever you have on hand that sounds good.

When the veggies softened, I added a pint of corn I canned from the farmers' market and a pint of my homemade, all-local pasta sauce. I also added as much veggie broth as I had on hand, then topped the pot off with water.

I allowed the soup to simmer 1-1/2 to 2 hours on the stove on low heat, adding herbs and salt to taste.

That's all there is to it! It's so easy, you can use whatever you have on hand, and even more or less veggies - whatever suits your taste. The diluted pasta sauce gives it a nice tomato-y flavor without tasting like your slurping spaghetti. :)
As I mentioned above, I love this soup by itself or made into a stove-top casserole dish. Here's a photo of the casserole I made last week with 1 quart of this soup.

Basically, I poured the soup in a saucepan with 1 cup of rice, brought the mixture to boiling, and then let it simmer on the stove for about 45 minutes. While the rice is cooking in the soup, I sauteed chopped eggplant, zucchini, onion, and peppers (all local) in a little olive oil. When the veggies were softened, I just set them aside until the rice was done. When the rice was ready, I emptied the sauteed veggies in the sauce pan with the "souped-up" rice, and voila - Super-duper, Easy-cheesy, Stove-top Veggies and Rice. And it's all local! Doesn't get any better than that!

Pshew! The fridge has now been cleared of leftovers and I'm ready for a fresh run on the pantry goods and veggies from the backyard for next week. And of course, you never know what I'll come home with from the farmers' market this Saturday. Stay tuned to find out!

In the meantime, Happy (and mindful) Eating!

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