Tag Archives: allspice

Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup

17 Mar
Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup 2

Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup

Have you ever been frozen with so much indecision with what to make for dinner that you can barely force yourself into the kitchen to make a meal? That happened to me today. I waffled back and forth so many times on how to make this soup, and was so terrified of it being a complete flop, that I literally stayed out of the kitchen for hours until I was forced to just go head on into the kitchen and start doing something. ANYTHING! So I started out with the basics and began slicing and dicing. There…I started feeling more comfortable. I defrosted some homemade chicken broth. OK. I’m feeling a littler more confident. Uh oh. Should I add some tomato and carrot for flavor and color? OK add them to the photo shoot, then you’ll be forced to use it, right? Should I use the leftover boiled potatoes in this, or start with a fresh chopped one? Stop it! You like dicing. I ran and got a potato and peeled it and chopped it before I changed my mind. Oh no! What if the soup is too bland? Quick, add some allspice to it. Whew!

Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup Served

Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup Served

This entire episode began with me asking hubby if I could make soup out of our leftover corned beef dinner we had a day before St. Patrick’s Day, since he was going out of town overnight and wouldn’t be around for the evening’s meal tonight. “Oh. I put six potatoes in the crock pot so we could have another meal out of it when I got back on Monday.” Hmmm. OK so there went that. But then I noticed how much corned beef was left, and knew I could pull off a soup in his absence. So then I asked my daughter. “Would you like some soup made out of the leftover corned beef?” Silence. More silence. “Well, the corned beef is just so salty,” she finally replied. We have indoctrinated our daughter into a pretty low-salt diet, which is not bad, but a crockpot dinner of corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes simmered all day had put her salt-buds over the top. I agree, it was too salty for my taste too, but it didn’t stop me from devouring mass quantities of it. We restrict ourselves to this type of meal once or twice a year.

So now I present to you a “healthier” version of corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes, made in soup form.

Chopped Cabbage and Veggies for Soup

Chopped Cabbage and Veggies for Soup

Healthy Leftover Corned Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Soup

About 2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup sliced cabbage
1/2 cup sliced onion
1/2 cup sliced baby carrots
Ground black pepper, to taste
3 cups homemade or low-salt chicken broth
1 cup shredded cooked corned beef
1 small peeled potato, diced small
1 small chopped tomato
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
3 tablespoons of leftover corned beef broth, or salt, to taste

In a medium pot over medium heat, add the olive oil, cabbage, carrots, and ground black pepper. Saute for about five minutes, until the cabbage starts to brown a tad. Add the chicken broth, shredded corned beef, and potatoes. Bring up to a boil, then simmer for about 15 minutes. Add the tomato and allspice, and simmer for another 10 or 15 minutes on low. At this point, taste for saltiness. I had my daughter taste it and said it was a bit bland, so then added a tablespoon of the leftover corned beef broth. She thought it needed a bit more so added 2 more tablespoons, and she deemed it fit to eat. If you didn’t save any corned beef broth, then just add salt to taste at this point.  I was very pleased with this soup, and wish I hadn’t angsted so much in just starting to make it!

Inside-Out Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

9 Mar
Inside-Out Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

Inside-Out Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

I have a confession to make. I have never made stuffed cabbage rolls in my life. For years and years I have drooled over pictures of them, but the long process to stuff the cabbage leaves and braise for several hours always intimidated me. So I did the next best thing. I turned them inside out and made soup instead! While researching what ingredients go into a stuffed cabbage roll dish, I discovered that every Eastern European country has their own version of this dish. Ukranians typically make theirs with pork, sauerkraut and onions, while the Romanians add a generous amount of fresh dill to their sauce. Polish cuisine mixes ground beef or pork with rice, which is the common Americanized version. Hungarians add paprika to theirs, which I did too. Most of the sauces are tomato-based, except for in Sweden where they typically serve it with Lingonberry jam.

Trying to decide what to put in the soup took me several hours of scouring recipes (in which I could have been actually making the traditional dish!), and finally just had to start making it by the seat of my pants otherwise we’d never eat. I wrote a list of most common ingredients, then started adding them one by one, tossing in a bit of this and a pinch of that. I kept a notepad nearby so I could document what actually ended up in the soup, and how much. Another thing I did was try to healthy it up a bit by using ground turkey and brown rice, and used some homemade no-sodium turkey broth.

I always measure my success with a new recipe by how many servings my family goes back for. In this case, hubby went back for thirds and daughter took seconds. That’s success in my book! This makes a nice bit pot of soup, and freezes well. It also tasted even better the next day as leftovers. On day two, I also added a dollop of sour cream to my bowl, which is another garnish that can be added to this dish.  And please don’t get intimidated by the long ingredient list, it comes together fairly quick and easy. You can also make the cooking time much shorter if you use white rice instead of brown. Brown rice takes a long time to cook at high altitude.

Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

Inside-Out Stuffed Cabbage Roll Soup

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 1/4 pounds ground turkey
1 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb, or salt, to taste
5 to 6 cups chicken, turkey, or beef broth, homemade or low sodium
1 tablespoon Hungarian sweet paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (more if you like spicy!)
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup brown or white rice, uncooked
2 cans low-sodium diced tomatoes
1 8-ounce can no-salt tomato sauce
Handful of chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
1 bag of shredded cabbage (I used the mixed cole slaw with carrots)
Sour cream for garnish (optional)

In a large soup pot, brown the ground turkey and chopped onions in the olive oil over medium heat until turkey is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and cook a minute or two more. Drain the grease, if any. Grind a bunch of black pepper over it, and add the Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste. Next add the broth and stir in all the rest of the ingredients except the cabbage or cole slaw and garnishes. Bring up to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer until the rice is cooked through. For brown rice, that took about an hour. White rice would probably only take 20 minutes. Once rice is tender, add the bag of shredded cabbage, bring back up to a simmer, and cook for about 10 minutes more. Remove the bay leaves, and garnish with parsley or sour cream. There area some exciting tastes going on in this soup!

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