Mama’s Winter Vegetable Soup
by Laurie Masterton, ‘The Fresh Honey Cookbook‘
Here’s a wonderful vegetable soup that works no matter what time of year you are cooking. The most important part is, of course, to use local, fresh vegetables. And in this case, let’s concentrate on vegetables that need bees for pollination. Do feel free to alter the vegetables according to what is the freshest when you go to the market. This soup improves with age, so you may make it a day before you want to serve it.
3 medium sweet onions, peeled and cut into thin round slices
3 carrots, peeled and cut into diagonal slices
1 turnip, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
1 leek, well washed and cut into 1-inch pieces (do not use the toughest tops of the green part)
1 cup chopped celery, including tops if possible
4 fresh curly parsley sprigs
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
½ cup haricots verts (baby French green beans) or green beans, cut into ½-inch pieces
½ cup broccoli pieces, separated into ¼ cup florets and ¼ cup sliced, peeled stems
½ cup peas
½ red bell pepper, seeded and cut into slivers
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup shaved or grated Pamesan or Grana Padano cheese
Here’s what you do:
- Combine the onions, carrots, turnip, leek, celery, and parsley in a large soup pot. Cover with about 2 quarts water and bring to a boil. Add the salt. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the vegetables are tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
- Add the haricots verts and broccoli stems and cook for 15 minutes. Stir in the butter.
- Add the broccoli florets, peas, and bell pepper, and cook until they are tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in the butter.
- Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with the shaved or grated Parmesan on top.