Vegetable Beef Soup - Recipe

     January is National Soup Month and National Slow Cooking Month, so I decided to share a hearty vegetable beef soup that makes its own broth.  You need not worry about adding beef broth or chicken broth.  It includes turnips in addition to the usual carrots and onions for interest and added wintery flavor.  I also like the little Thai peppers for some warm heat.  As long as there are no seeds, it is not too spicy.  Just make sure you wash your hands well after handling.  I recommend a grass fed beef chuck roast, because not only is it healthier, it has better flavor.  When I changed to grass fed beef a number of years ago, it smelled like my grandmother's cooking, and I was so surprised at the difference in flavor.  It seems like all other beef is bland in comparison. 
     My grandmother used to make a beef vegetable soup when I was little, and I can still imagine looking forward to it along with a piece of bread and a salad.  My sister and I would usually be doing homework while she made supper for everyone.  I would be so hungry for dinner after smelling the soup simmer!  This is my version, which is warm and just right for a nourishing meal after snow shoveling or just coming in from the cold.

Adding all vegetables and herbs to the pot.

Vegetable Beef Soup

(Serves 6-8)

2 T. Olive Oil
2 (3-lb.) Beef Chuck Roasts
2 Onions sliced thinly
5 Carrots sliced in 1 inch pieces
1 Turnip sliced in 1 inch pieces
1-2 Thai Peppers seeded and chopped (wash hands well after handling)

4 Bay leaves
1 tsp. Ground Thyme
1 tsp. Ground Basil
1 sprig Fresh Rosemary
1/4 c. Balsamic Vinegar
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

     Heat olive oil in a 9 quart Dutch oven on medium heat. Dry off roasts with a paper towel and place in pot. Brown on all sides. Take out the roasts and add the onions. Fry on medium-low heat till translucent. Add 1 cup water and scrape up brown bits on bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Add the meat, carrots, turnip, Thai pepper (wash hands after handling - will sting if gets into eyes), bay leaves, thyme, basil, and rosemary to the pot. Pour the vinegar over the meat and add enough water to just cover meat. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer on low for 2 hours, stirring occasionally to keep from sticking. Add salt and pepper to taste. Discard the bay leaves and rosemary sprig. Place meat on a cutting board and discard bones if any. Cut up meat into 2 inch chunks and return to pot. Serve warm.

Note: This soup makes its own broth. Skim excess fat off with a spoon.


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