Thursday, October 24, 2013

Tasty Thursday: Italian Turkey Soup

Italian Turkey Soup
Yay! It's soup season!
Here's what you'll need. 
Ground turkey
Extra virgin olive oil
Italian seasoning
Chicken stock
White beans
Diced tomatoes
Fresh spinach
Salt and pepper
Confession, I could eat soup probably 4-5 times a week, even in the summer.  It is so versatile and budget friendly, you just can't beat it. I almost always have ingredients for soup on hand. The ingredients are typically inexpensive and you can stretch it out by adding another box of stock, an extra carrot or even pasta. So, yeah, be ready for quite a few soup recipes. :o)

 Once I started adding the ingredients to my soup, I decided to stretch it out and added more tomatoes and more stock than I originally intended. So all the ingredients are accounted for in the picture. I thought about adding a second can of beans, but one was plenty. 

I really wanted Italian wedding soup but I didn't want to roll out the meatballs. I've been wrestling with a cold and have ZERO energy. Soup was definitely on the menu since it has been cooler and I was sick so I set about looking in my pantry/freezer and browsing some of my recipes. I came up with this. It sort of has the ingredients of Italian wedding soup but went together really quickly and easily. 

Tip: I always buy more ground turkey than I need. I brown it all up, use what I need and freeze the rest. Time and money saving. 
Peel, clean and dice the carrots. Dice the onions and mince the garlic. Do all the chopped before hand because this comes together fairly quick. 
In a couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, over medium heat, soften the carrots, and onions. Adding a little salt and pepper at this stage helps to soften them up. If you are using fresh ground turkey, add it after the onions and carrots have cooked for a few minutes and cook them together. Adding the garlic the last minute or two. 
Crush the dry seasoning in your hands before adding it to the pot after the turkey is browned. Stir it and knock the heat back if needed. Let this cook for a few minutes, you'll smell the dried herbs releasing their oil and that's when you know it's time to go to the next step. 
If the bottom of your pan gets brown, don't panic...that is good! Just add a little of the chicken broth at a time and scrape it off with your spoon. Once you clean the bottom of the pan, add the rest of the broth and tomatoes. 
Drain and rinse the beans and add them. 
At this point, raise the temp to high and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and allow to cook for about 20 minutes. You can cook it longer if you like a softer texture to your veggies. Cooking it for only 20 or so minutes gives you some room if you intend on having leftovers. 



I turned off the heat and added a couple handfuls of fresh spinach then thought I might like it better in smaller pieces, so I chopped up a couple more handfuls. Cover the pot and allow the spinach to wilt into the hot soup. 
To stretch this soup even further, you could either add pasta, or as I prefer...cook some pasta on the side. That way, those who want pasta can enjoy it and when I store the leftovers, the pasta won't get mushy or absorb all the broth. Broken spaghetti noodles would be fun, or ditalini pasta. Or hey, whatever you have in your pantry. You're the boss. Even rice would be good. I opted to go low carb and didn't bother with the pasta. 


And we have a hit. I got a thumbs up, even!


1 lb Ground turkey
Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 Onion, diced
2 cloves minced garlic
2 Carrots, diced
1 tbs Italian seasoning
1 tbs Basil
1 tbs Oregano
1 carton (32oz) Chicken stock
1 can White beans
1 can Diced tomatoes, undrained
a couple handfuls of fresh spinach, wilted in or cut up then wilted in
Salt and pepper to taste

Brown the ground turkey in a couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. When it's almost brown, add your onions, garlic and carrots. Salt. Add dried seasoning and stir it for a few seconds to wake it up. Add remaining ingredients, except spinach. Allow to simmer on low, covered, for about 15-20 minutes. Turn off heat and wilt in the spinach.


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