This past weekend we did some major stuffing of our freezer. We made both lunches and dinners for future grab-n-go use and stocked our stand up freezer heavily with the goodies. We did the Adult Beanie-weanies, Minestrone & Beef Vegetable Soups (see recipe below), and Chili. I also made some trail mix that is super yummy for some healthy snacking! These were low cost meals that were easy to make in big batches and freeze well.
Having homemade grab-n-go lunches and dinners will allow us to eat more at home even when we're too busy to cook.
I've been eating this Beef Vegetable soup recipe all my life. My mother got the recipe from my Nannie and although it uses a lot of canned vegetables instead of fresh, for me you can't substitute the canned. It just doesn't have the flavor. My mom and grandmother would cook this soup for a minimum of 3 hours but I've had success condensing it down to 1.5 hours before. I would go any less than that.
This is also fabulous reheated. I remember coming home from school, pulling out the big pot with leftovers in it and heating up a small bowl in the microwave for a snack. This is great for lunches the next day or week.
This soup is very forgiving. You can't mess it up and you can use just about anything in it but I stick to my tried and true ingredients. I've also added my own touches to the soup, just as my mother did when she got the recipe from my Nannie. With each generation it gets better.
This is the kind of soup you want to take your time with. Open the windows on a fall afternoon, sit down with a good book, and pour all your love into the pot while the wonderful aromas fill your house. Patience is important for this one, it's not a quick fix. This soup will fill your tummy with warmth and love.
If I'm making a double batch I'll make it in two pots so as not to mess with the flavor too much. Great for freezing or on a cold day with some warm cornbread-everyone will love this one.
Mama's Beef Vegetable Soup
1 lb Ground Beef
1 tbsp Italian Seasoning
2 large cans of Stewed Tomatoes (Or 2 Quarts of home-canned tomatoes)
1 can Succotash (between canned veggies and tomatoes at the store)
1 tbsp Tomato Paste
1 can Veg-all (don't get the low or no sodium)
1 small can of whole corn kernels
1 potato, peeled and diced
1 cup Elbow Mac noodles
Kosher Salt, to taste
Add beef & seasonings to a large soup pot and cook until browned. Drain grease.
Add tomatoes, succotash, and tomato paste. Then fill tomato can twice with water and add. Bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer. Let simmer for 30 minutes to and hour.
Add Veg-all and simmer 30 minutes to an hour. Add water if needed.
Add potato and corn and simmer 30 more minutes
Taste broth and season with salt, pepper, or other seasonings as you see fit.
Add Mac and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Serve hot with cornbread or cool and freeze.
Enjoy this tummy warming meal made with love.
Note: We have tried canning this soup and the noodles didn't hold up to well. If you want to can this soup leave out the noodles and follow canning instruction for tomato based soups.