Monday, January 7, 2013


Here in Grand Haven, it is a cold, gray day with snow squalls sweeping in from the Lake periodically.  A good time for a big pot of soup with lots of vegetables.  Vegetables with all their vitamins and minerals really help to ward off all the colds and flu going around right now.  It would be hard to find another recipe which tastes so good and has all the different groups of vegetables in it.  From parsley to potatoes, from tomatoes to onions, from carrots to cabbage, this soup has them all. 


My dear friend and neighbor, Joyce, gave me this recipe.  I was busy writing down her ingredients and instructions when as an ingredient she listed ketchup.  Ketchup?  I've never put ketchup in a soup.  Well there is always a first time.  To my delight, the ketchup gives the cabbage and vegetables the same mouth-watering appeal as it does French fried potatoes and cheeseburgers.  You spoon into your bowl of soup and wonder what is that a little spicy, a little sweet ingredient(s) that gives this soup its unique taste?  The wonderful uniqueness keeps you wondering until your soup bowl is empty and your are ready for more.

This soup is so tasty and so nutritious.

2 lbs. lean ground hamburger
3 leeks, chopped
3-4 stalks of celery, chopped
1 stick of butter, I used less
4-6 cups of water
3 beef bouillon cubes
2 (   )cans tomatoes with juice
2 big Spanish onions, coarsely chopped
1 lb. bag carrots, chopped
Little red new potatoes, amount to taste
1 small to medium head cabbage, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 c ketchup
1 bunch parsley, chopped
Black pepper, fresh ground, to taste
More water if needed

Ingredients:  Lean ground beef, beef bouillon, canned tomatoes, leeks, celery, butter, carrots, Spanish onions, cabbage, little red potatoes, parsley, ketchup and black pepper.

Heat a large skillet and brown beef a little at a time so the meat browns and doesn't steam.  Put cooked meat into a stock pot.  When meat is all browned, add butter to skillet and chopped leeks and celery.  Saute to soften.  Add to stock pot.  Into the stock pot, put the beef bouillon and 4 to 6 cups of water.  Turn on the stove and start heating the soup.  Meanwhile, add the canned tomatoes with the juice.  (I always squeeze the tomatoes with my hand to reduce their size.)  Add the coarsely chopped onions, and the chopped carrots.  It depends on the size of the red potatoes as how to slice them, I left some whole, chopped some in half and some in quarters.  Add potatoes to soup pot.  Potatoes are often thought of as just a source for starch but they are rich in vitamins and minerals especially when they are cooked with their skins on them.  Add coarsely chopped cabbage and finely chopped parsley.  Add more water to pot if needed.  Add the ketchup and ground black pepper to taste.  Stir well.  Cover stock pot, bring soup barely to a boil, reduce heat, and cook slowly until all the vegetables are cooked.  Season to taste.  With the ketchup in the soup, I didn't think the soup even needed salt.

In a large skillet, brown ground beef. 

Cut celery lengthwise and then chop it crosswise.

Cut ends off leeks and remove old leaves.  Cut leeks crosswise into slices including the tender green part.  Leeks are very sandy.  I put the chopped leeks in a strainer.

I put the strainer with the leeks over the sink and spray the leeks well with the hose on my sink.  I use my hand to separate the rings of leeks and remove the dirt.

After the meat is browned and removed from skillet, add butter to skillet.  Add the leeks and celery to butter.  Saute until the vegetables are softened.  Add leeks and celery to the meat in stock pot.  

Coarsely chop onions and add to stock pot.

Chop carrots.

Leeks with celery, onions, and carrots in the stock pot.  Stir well.

Wash potatoes and cut them so they are all about the same size.

Add potatoes to stock pot.

Remove core from cabbage.  Rinse cabbage and parsley with cold water.

Coarsely chop cabbage.

Add cabbage to stock pot.

Finely chop parsley.  So dark green and full of vitamins.

Add ketchup to stock pot.

Grind black pepper into vegetable mixture.  Stir well.  Cover pot.  Bring soup just to a low boil.  Reduce temperature and cook soup until the vegetables are all tender.

Joyce would say, "Eet Smakelijk."


Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!!!

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