Saturday, March 10, 2012

White Bean, Cabbage and Salmon Soup

White Bean, Cabbage and Salmon Soup

It's that time of year when the temperatures occasionally dip and things get still frosty, so I'm continuing to make soup weekly. I like soup because it has plenty of nutrients, cleans up the left-overs, and stretches the food budget. Good soup is satisfying, and it's difficult to actually make a bad batch of really have to goof things up if you do.

This soup has everything-soluble fiber,iron and Omega-3 oil, and it's filling. It's not a vegetarian recipe because it does have a bit of crumbled bacon in it for seasoning. I keep a jar of bacon grease in a jar in the back of the fridge ( a small jar goes a long way and assures that it doesn't go rancid) just for seasoning purposes. A tablespoon blended in with olive oil goes a long way and doesn't change the saturated fat content significantly in a large pot of soup. If you want a vegetarian version, you can omit the bacon/bacon grease and substitute a half envelope of  powdered ham-flavored  bullion and replace a cup of the chicken broth with it ( it's soy based, no meat). If you don't like the taste of ham, use vegetable bullion.

I always stir fry my vegetables in a little olive oil before adding to soup because it adds a rich flavor and nice color to the broth. To this particular recipe I also add a half teaspoon of rosemary, a pinch of basil, some dill weed and fresh cracked pepper. If you need any salt, I'd suggest a dash of soy sauce because it goes a long way and bumps up the flavor. I have used canned salmon (drained and picked free of the bones and skin. Makes great fertilizer-roses love it).

White Bean, Cabbage and Salmon Soup


In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, combine the beans, water, broth, garlic and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over hight heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 50 minutes, or until the beans are very tender. Remove and discard the bay leaf.
In a food processor or blender, puree the soup in batches until smooth. Return the soup to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover to keep warm.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add the cabbage and onion. Cook, stirring frequently, for 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and tender. Add to the soup.
In the same skillet heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add the salmon and bacon. Sprinkle with the thyme. Cook, stirring gently, for 3 minutes, or until the salmon is lightly browned and just opaque.
Gently stir the salmon mixture into the soup.
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