Garden Dump Soup
Our kindly neighbor in back gifted us with two giant zucchinis and a large summer squash just before we left on our trip to the coast last weekend. I packed the largest zucchini and my mandoline and made a huge pan of Zucchini Lasagna in our RV’s convection oven, so that made use of one.
A couple days after we got back, I discovered the other zucchini and squash in the vegetable bin plus a half bag of baby spinach. AND our tomatoes had gone gangbusters while we were gone!
Garden Fresh Veggies
Soup was the only thing that came to mind where I could use that many veggies at once, so scoured our freezer for a bit of protein to go with it. I found a 1/2 pound of ground turkey, and about a 1/4 pound of homemade ground hot Italian sausage, which I figured needed using up anyways. Last, I grabbed a quart of homemade beef stock out of the freezer, as I had 6 quarts of that and only 2 quarts of chicken broth.
Basically I chopped it all up, sauteed the veggies and meats, then threw the rest of it in a stock-pot with some seasonings and spicy oregano from gardening and voila! Garden Dump Soup. Maybe I should have called it Garden and Freezer Dump Soup? Also at the very end I tossed in a cup of elbow macaroni to thicken it up a bit. Either way, this wowed the hubs, who went back for second and thirds, and he kept asking me what I was going to call it for my blog. I finally came up with this name.
What’s good about a soup like this is you can use any vegetables you have on hand, your preference of broth, and any kind of ground meat and pasta. So versatile! If you don’t end up using any ground hot Italian sausage I would recommend adding a 1/2 teaspoon or so of dried Italian seasoning and perhaps a pinch of red chile pepper flakes. But that’s just me.
Even better, the next day I made myself a hearty breakfast (it was workout day) by plopping a farm-fresh egg into it and simmered it to perfection. Yay!
Perfectly Poached Egg in Soup
Garden Dump Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 extra-large zucchini (about 3 cups chopped)
1 large summer squash (about 2 cups chopped)
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
3/4 to 1 pound low-fat ground meat or combination of meats
Ground black pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste
4 cups broth or stock of choice, preferably homemade or low sodium
4 cups chopped fresh tomatoes (or canned)
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
4 ounces fresh spinach, chopped (about 4 cups loosely packed)
1 cup dry elbow macaroni
Grated Parmesan cheese, optional for garnish
Chop and mince up everything to prep. Add the oil to a stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
Veggies and Ground Meats
Add the ground meat, veggies (except tomatoes, and spinach if using), onion, garlic, and seasonings. Cook for about 15 minutes until the meat is cooked pretty much through.
Add the stock or broth, tomatoes, and oregano plus other herbs/spices if necessary.
Tomatoes and Oregano Added
Bring to a simmer, then add the elbow macaroni or other small pasta. Simmer until pasta is done then add the chopped spinach (if using) and cook until wilted.
Wilting the Spinach
Taste and adjust seasonings if needed. Serve in bowls with optional Parmesan cheese. Filling and super yummy!
Garden Dump Soup
p.s. Never Forget! 9-11-01
Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!
p.p.s. My hubby caught a 40-inch 24-pound Chinook Salmon out of the Siletz Bay last weekend! Woo hoo! Here’s a few photos (or 6 or 7), if you don’t mind me sharing. My turn next.🙂
Paul and his 40-inch Chinook Salmon
Fresh Chinook from the Ocean
Victory Walk to the Weighing Station
Weighing the Salmon ~ That’s One Happy Man!