Thursday, April 28, 2011

Accidental Delight

Everyone who knows me knows how much I love to cook.  I love trying out new recipes or putting a twist on old ones.  Well, last night, I accidentally created a delicious soup.  I've got a ton of canned beans at my house due to an awesome sale at the Commissary last month.  Basically, with the coupons they were giving out, I ended up getting each can of beans for only 30 cents a piece.  I, of course, bought 20 cans one day, then 20 the next, then...well, you can see where this is going.  So, being as it's close to pay day, I was running out of fresh veggies and decided to make a soup instead. 

I had some stew beef on hand and thought I'd try making a cassoullet/pasta e fagioli type of soup.  I started with my typical base for my soups:  onion, carrots, celery and garlic.  After I diced them all up, I sauteed them in olive oil.  Then, I added the beef and browned it.  I added a can of red kidney beans (undrained) and white cannellini beans (also undrained) and a can of diced tomates (undrained).  I decided to use a packet of Lipton onion soup to serve as a type of "soup starter" and so I poured that into the pan.  To my surprise, it wasn't onion soup at all but rather a packet of Lipton VEGETABLE soup mix instead.  I totally forgot that my niece reorganized my pantry for me (she likes to do that!) and had taken the packets out of their boxes and put them in my plastic organizer I use for sauces and gravy.  In my haste, I just saw "Lipton" and grabbed it without reading the label. 

I was really disappointed as I'd been eager to try the onion soup but me being me, I moved on.  I added some cracked rosemary, some salt and pepper and let the pot simmer for about 2 hours.  The result:  delicious accidental delight!  Everyone in the family loved it and it was so good, I took again for lunch today and it tasted even better.  I think this would be just as good if you used ground chuck, pork, kielbasa or italian sausages.  Probably more of a fall/winter dish, but it worked out great for using up the last of my veggies before they went bad.  Here's the recipe:

1 lb. stew beef (or sausages, pork, ground chuck, etc.)
3 medium sized carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, finely diced (only because I have a picky husband who doesn't like celery)
1 medium onion, finely diced (only because I have a picky son who hates onions)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can dark red kidney beans (don't drain)
1 can white cannellini beans (don't drain)
1 can diced tomatoes (don't drain)
1 packet Lipton vegetable soup mix
1 tsp. cracked rosemary
salt and pepper to taste

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