Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I am so in the mood for soup. So today, I am passing on two of my favorite soups, just in case someone else is in the same mood.

The first is a new fave, which comes form Spark People, which, if you haven’t checked it out, is worth a glance. It’s filled with inspiring thoughts, lots of chatter between members, tips for staying true to a healthy eating plan – and recipes – lots of them.

The second recipe is from Weight Watchers, which I will be making for Thanksgiving. It will be the perfect way to start our feast.


7 large baked potatoes
3 Tblsp. butter, unsalted
1 1/2 cups onion, diced fine
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup celery, diced fine
3 Tblsp. flour
2 cups chicken stock, low sodium
4 cups skim or 1% milk
1/4 tsp. white pepper
2 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
3 Tblsp. scallions, chopped
1 cup Cheddar cheese, shredded

• Remove skin from the baked potatoes and chop potatoes into 1-inch cubes.
• In a large saucepan, heat butter over medium until melted and frothy. Add onions and cook for 2 minutes. Add celery and garlic to the saucepan and continue to "sweat" the vegetables for 3 minutes. Lower the heat slightly so the vegetables do not brown.
• Add flour to the pan and stir with a wooden spoon and cook for 2 minutes; make sure to scrape the spoon against the bottom and edges of the saucepan to pick up any of the mixture that might of settled on the bottom of the pan. Slowly whisk in the stock until all is incorporated.
• Add diced potatoes to the mixture. Slowly add the milk. Once the milk is added do not boil the mixture and stir occasionally. Cook soup over medium to low heat for about 20 minutes.
• While soup is cooking, cook the bacon until crisp in a skillet. Remove bacon from pan and blot excess fat with a paper towel. Crumble bacon and set aside for garnish.
• If you prefer a smooth soup, puree the mixture using a food processor, blender or immersion blender. Serve in warm bowls with a garnish of chopped scallion, a pinch of bacon, and 3/4 tablespoon of cheese.
• Makes 15 1-cup servings. Per serving: 260 calories; 9g fat; 3.5mg fiber.

2 tsp olive oil
1 medium onions, chopped
2 lbs. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
32 oz. canned chicken broth, reduced-sodium
2 Tblsp. fresh sage, chopped
1/4 cup fat-free sour cream
2 Tblsp. fresh sage, chopped (optional)
1 1/2 cups water, or less

• Heat a large nonstick saucepan. Swirl in the oil, then add the onion. Sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes.
• Add the squash, broth and sage; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, adding the water 1⁄2 cup at a time, until the squash is very soft, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool 30 minutes. 

• Pour the mixture through a strainer; reserve the liquid. Transfer the squash mixture remaining in the strainer to a food processor; pulse to a very smooth puree. Add 1-to-1 1⁄2 cups of the strained liquid, 1⁄2 cup at a time, until the soup has a fluid but creamy consistency. (Refrigerate or freeze any leftover strained liquid for another use.) 

• Transfer the soup back to the saucepan and cook, stirring frequently, until just heated through. Garnish each serving with a tablespoon of the sour cream and a sprinkle of the additional sage, if using. Makes 4 1-cup per servings. 4 POINTS per serving.

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