...oh yes. Winter is the time. The time for soup. I've gotten quite good at perfecting the art of soup, if I do say so myself. I used to think brewing up a pot of homemade goodness was such a hassle, but really it couldn't be easier so long as you have some type of stock and veggies/beans on hand.
The following is quite possibly the crowning glory of any soup I've ever made. I walked into the kitchen completely uninspired and then something amazing just happened and the following recipe was born:
What you need:
2 onions, chopped
1 cup tomato sauce (homemade is best - I always add oregano to mine, so if you're using sauce without it, add about 1/2 tsp)
3 carrots, chopped
5 potatoes, chopped
5-6 cups chicken stock (or vegetable)
1 tsp sage
salt, pepper, garlic powder
5-6 cloves chopped garlic
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 can cannelloni beans, not drained
2-3 pats butter and 2 Tbs oil
What you do:
Saute the onions in the oil until they are nice and almost caramelized, then add all the potatoes and carrots and saute down until the onions are almost melted and dark brown. Toss in your butter. Add the spices, tomato sauce, and stock. Put a lid on the top and cook for about 30 minutes, then add the beans (don't drain them - this helps thicken the soup). Cook another 15-20 minutes until the potatoes are cooked a bit past their "tender" stage.
There are a few things that, I think, make this soup especially wonderful. First, it uses things everyone has on hand but perhaps never thought to put together. Second, it's cheap, and don't we all love that? Third, and most important - it is so good for you! Hardly any fat at all, brothy, and high in protein and nutrients from the tomatoes, stock, and garlic - ward of those pesky colds. The broth in itself is a thing of beauty because the butter adds another level of decadence and a wonderful viscosity not typical of your regular runny broth.