Monday, November 4, 2013

Crockpot Creamy Vegetable and Wild Rice Soup - dairy & fat free!!!

I love making soups, stews, and braised meats during the fall and winter season.  But sometimes these can be full of heavy cream or butter and flour to create that thick, comforting, creamy style soup or stew.  No more my friends!

For years my father has been ahead of the game.  Not because he is particularly health conscious, but because he was looking to make the most flavorful gravy's, soups, and stews without all the drippings that can make you physically ill.  He has been blending the cooked veggies from the recipes in the blender with fresh herbs and stock or broth to create thick, creamy, flavorful sauces or bases to your soup/stew.  Genius!  And that is exactly what this recipe does.  Does it taste like the full-fat cream of vegetable soup you find in restaurants?  Not exactly, but I don't really expect it to taste exactly like it. It's practically fat free!!!  However, tt is still extremely satisfying and I don't feel like I'm missing out on anything!  My husband, parents, kids, and others who have tried this recipe agree - this is an amazingly easy, healthy soup and a great way to eat more veggies without even realizing it.  And since it is so low in calories and fat, feel free to sprinkle a little cheddar cheese on top.

I hope you try this recipe and apply the technique to other creamy soups like cream of broccoli, creamy potato, etc.  Enjoy!!!

Happy Cooking!

Crockpot Creamy Vegetable and Wild Rice Soup
recipe based on
1 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 heads cauliflower, chopped into 1″ pieces
stock or broth (any kind) to cover vegetables
1 1/2 cups of cooked wild rice
4 carrots, chopped
2 cups broccoli, chopped
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and black pepper to taste
chopped scallions and/or shredded cheddar for serving (optional)

In your crockpot, add onion, garlic and 1 stalk celery (chopped) and add enough chicken, turkey, beef, or vegetable broth or stock to come up at least half way up.  You can always add more later if you want a thinner soup.   Cook on high for 4-6 hours or until the vegetables are tender (you can't over cook the veggies and I did stir it once and a while since I was home, but that is not necessary).   It'll look like this:

While cauliflower is simmering, steam carrots, celery and broccoli in a separate pot or in microwave.
Once cauliflower is tender, use immersible blender or pour soup in batches into a regular blender. Blend until creamy.

Add steamed vegetables and rice to the creamed soup. Add black pepper to taste.

Serve immediately.   I like to top mine with chopped scallions and the kids love to add shredded cheese.  Leftovers are good in the fridge for 3-5 days or you can freeze them in individual servings for a cold day in the near future.  Enjoy!!!

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