Sunday Soup, a Recipe Framework
I am a big believer in the restorative powers of both soup and a day of rest, and this recipe gives you both!
Sunday Soup is a great way to use whatever you have on hand, including any forgotten veggies hiding in the fridge or blemished ones from the garden. This basic framework allows you to make a different, delicious soup every week: winter, spring, summer, and autumn! Leftovers taste even better the next day.
Another nice thing about this framework is that the preparation flows smoothly, with one task leading easily to the next.
You start with a tablespoon of good quality cooking fat in a skillet. Cast iron is ideal as it browns well, but use what you have; preferably not a nonstick skillet. This could be lard, tallow, ghee, butter, or coconut oil. Sauté the onion, garlic, and herbs for a minute, then add the raw meat. If you are using leftover cooked meat, wait to add it until adding the veggies.
While the aromatics are sautéing, wash and chop the veggies in bite-size pieces and heat the broth in a large (5-6 quart / 5-6 liter) pot. You could cook the meat directly in the soup pot and then add the broth and veggies, but using 2 separate pans saves a good 20 minutes in the kitchen.
Once the meat is browned but not necessarily cooked through, add veggies and meat to the pot with the broth.
Use a jar of home-canned tomatoes in place of part of the broth if you have them. The soup pictured contains beef bone broth and canned crushed tomatoes with herbs.
For herbs I used sage, marjoram, celery seeds, and parsley – all dried in my spice drawer.
For veggies I used a big wedge of cabbage, an orange sweet potato, a few mushrooms that were going downhill, and black beans. I cook a variety of beans and freeze them in recipe-size portions for cooking. They can be popped frozen into the pot.
Simmer until all ingredients are tender but not mushy, about 30 minutes.
If you grow your own herbs this is an opportunity to use them! I originally found Prezzemolo Gigante d’Italia (Giant of Italy Parlsey) seeds from Pinetree garden seeds. You can now find them at Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.
Sunday Soup is a hearty meal in a bowl. Do include fresh greens and fermented vegetables at serving time, if you have them.
Try this recipe framework on Sunday or any day of the week. You will be amazed how versatile it is and how simply it can be tailored to your family’s taste!
I am a big believer in the restorative powers of both soup and a day of rest, and this recipe give you both! A great way to use whatever you have on hand, including any forgotten veggies hiding in the fridge or blemished ones from the garden, this basic framework allows you to make a different delicious soup every week: winter, spring, summer, and autumn.
- Prep Time: 20 min
- Cook Time: 30 min
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings 1x
- Category: soup
- Method: stovetop
- Cuisine: American
1 tablespoon solid cooking fat (lard, tallow, ghee, butter, coconut oil, or reserved bacon grease)
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
1 pound grass fed organic ground meat or 2 cups leftover cooked meat
1–2 teaspoons dried herbs of choice: (choose one or a combo) thyme, oregano, marjoram, rosemary, basil, red pepper flakes, celery seeds, fennel seeds, cumin, etc.
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
8 cups bone broth
4 cups water
1 bay leaf
8–10 cups vegetables of choice: carrots, celery, cabbage, mushrooms, zucchini, sweet potato, tomatoes, green beans, etc. or use up leftover veggies
1–2 cups soaked and cooked grain or legumes (barley, brown rice, or white beans, etc.)
For serving: 8 cups fresh greens, such as spinach, baby kale, Swiss chard or arugula
Sauerkraut or other vegetable ferment
1. Melt fat in a medium skillet over medium heat. While the pan is heating, dice the onion and garlic. Crumble meat into heated pan and add onion, garlic, and herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Brown the meat, stirring occasionally until cooked through. If using leftover cooked meat, cut in bite-size pieces and add to the pot in step 3.
2. Meanwhile, heat broth, water, and bay leaf in a large soup pot over medium heat. Wash and chop all vegetables into bite-size pieces; set the greens aside.
3. Add remaining veggies (except greens; reserve for serving) to the pot along with the meat. Season generously with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender and flavors have married, 30-45 minutes.
4. Stir in cooked grain or beans if using and heat through. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking.
5. To serve, place 1 cup shredded greens in bottom of each serving bowl. Add soup to fill. Load a fork or spoon with a generous tablespoon of fresh, raw sauerkraut or other fermented vegetables and place it on top to be eaten first. Serve and pass the peppermill around to those who enjoy a little more pepper.
As with any soup, leftovers taste even better the next day! This is a generous pot of soup, feel free to cut in half if needed or to multiply it for a large family.
Keywords: soup, framework, template, whole foods, leftovers, nutrient dense