Tag Archives: soup

Ramen with tofu and bok choy in white bowl

This Hearty 20-Minute Vegan Zucchini Ramen Noodle Soup Will Not Disappoint

No matter what, you always found yourself eating ramen out of a microwaved bowl in college. It was soupy noodles and not much else. Imagine if you found a veggie-based recipe that was full of flavor, packed with protein, low carb and delicious. That’s exactly what this ramen is: healthy good food. In this Can You Vegan It? recipe, we swap eggs for tofu — further transforming this classic comfort food.

Ramen with tofu and bok choy in white bowl

Zucchini Ramen Noodle Soup

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

¼ cup sesame oil, divided
4 baby bok choy, quartered
2 Tbsp yellow miso paste (optional)
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 shallots, chopped
2 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
¼ cup coconut aminos
8 cups vegetable broth
½ tsp kosher salt
4 zucchinis, spiralized
4-6 omega-3 eggs, boiled, peeled and sliced or cooked tofu
2 3-oz (85 g) packages enoki mushrooms
1 cup scallions, diced

Related: Genius Ways to Hack a Pack of Ramen Noodles

Directions:

1. Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bok choy to the skillet and cook for roughly 2 minutes on both sides until lightly charred. Remove the bok choy from the skillet and set it aside.

2. Add the remaining oil, then add the miso (if using), garlic, shallots, ginger and coconut aminos. Sauté for 3 minutes. Add the broth and salt and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, then add the zucchini. Let the soup simmer for 5 minutes. Serve with the bok choy, eggs (or tofu), enoki mushrooms and a topping of scallions.

Like Valerie’s ramen noodle soup? Try her zesty lamb burgers or her low sugar persimmon creme brulee.

front cover of 30-Minute Low-Carb DinnersReprinted with permission from 30-Minute Low-Carb Dinners by Valerie Azinge, Page Street Publishing Co. 2020. Photo credit: Valerie Azinge, Yasaman Shafiei and Kabir Ali.

30-Minute Low-Carb Dinners, Amazon, $23.

All products featured on Food Network Canada are independently selected by our editors. For more products handpicked by our editorial team, visit Food Network Canada’s Amazon storefront. However, when you buy through links in this article or on our storefront, we earn an affiliate commission.

Ham and Collard Greens Star in This Tasty Soup From The Pioneer Woman

Ever wonder how to cook collard greens? We’ve got the perfect comforting dish for your first attempt. Collard greens have seen a resurgence in popularity of late, and The Pioneer Woman herself has an easy soul food recipe you can quickly whip up on a busy weeknight.

Crisp bunches of collard greens, diced ham, navy beans and a spicy kick from minced jalapeno simmer together in a chicken broth for a must-try soup that is the ultimate example of comfort food. Sprinkle with fresh Parmesan cheese and consider grabbing a crusty artisan baguette for serving. Voila! This simple Ree Drummond masterpiece is one of our favourite Pioneer Woman recipes.

Related: The Pioneer Woman’s Tex-Mex Recipes Will Satisfy Your Cheesy, Meaty Cravings

The Pioneer Woman’s Ham and Collard Soup Recipe

Total: 35 minutes
Yields: 8 servings

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp salted butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and minced
2 quarts (8 cups) chicken stock
2 lbs ham, diced
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 bunches collards, stems removed, chopped
Two 15.5-ounce cans navy beans, drained and rinsed
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Crusty artisan baguette, torn into pieces, for serving

Related: The Pioneer Woman’s Top Cookie Recipes to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

Directions:

1. Heat the butter and olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, onion and jalapeno and cook, stirring, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the stock, ham, salt, pepper, collards and beans. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook until the collards have softened and the flavors have come together, about 20 minutes.

2. Stir in the vinegar and taste. Adjust the seasonings as needed. Serve in bowls and garnish with the Parmesan and parsley. Serve each bowl with a chunk of crusty baguette.


Related: The Pioneer Woman’s Fast White Chicken Chili Will Become a Weeknight Staple

Watch The Pioneer Woman via stream Live and On Demand on the new Global TV App and on STACKTV. Food Network Canada is also available through all major TV service providers.

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup is the Easiest Way to Make Dinner

Love French onion soup? Don’t have time to stand around caramelizing onions? Then this slow cooker version is the perfect way to satisfy those cravings. Slow cooker soups are a great way to get a meal on the table with very little prep time and this is no exception. This is a perfect easy soup recipe for a chilly fall evening. It’ll make your home smell amazing and it’ll taste like you’ve spent hours in the kitchen when, in fact, it’s the slow cooker doing all the work for you!

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 9 hours
Total Time: 9 hours, 30 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients:

2 lbs onions, halved and sliced
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
3 tsp brown sugar
1.5 L beef stock
2 Tbsp brandy (optional)
8 sprigs fresh thyme, plus some for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
8-12 slices baguette
1 ½ cups grated Swiss cheese

Directions:

1. Place sliced onions, butter and sugar in a 6-quart slow cooker. Stir to combine.

Related: This Vegan Pumpkin Soup Has a Super-Secret Immune-Boosting Ingredient

2. Cover and cook on high for 6 to 7 hours, removing the lid and stirring from time to time. Many recipes suggest doing this overnight, but as all slow cookers are different, it’s best to be around when these are cooking so you can keep an eye on them so they don’t burn. The onions should be deep brown before you put the rest of the ingredients in.

3. Add the stock, brandy, thyme and pepper. Cover again and cook on high for approximately 2 hours.

4. Remove the lid, scoop out the thyme sprigs and stir.

5. Pre-heat your oven broiler to high. Prepare your oven-safe soup bowls by placing them on a parchment-lined tray. Top each bowl of soup with 2 slices of baguette and approximately ¼ cup grated cheese.

6. Broil for approximately 5 minutes or until the cheese is melty and golden brown. Top with a few fresh thyme leaves to serve.

Like Mardi’s slow cooker French onion soup? Try her oven-baked zucchini and corn fritters or her easy mixed berry galettes.

This Vegan Pumpkin Soup Has a Super-Secret Immune-Boosting Ingredient

Pumpkin soup is the quintessential autumn dish. It’s sweet and creamy with earthy tones and can be pantry-friendly or not, depending if you’re using canned or fresh. This vegan pumpkin soup recipe is a bit different because we’ve snuck in immune-boosting foods inside. Most soups start with a base of onions, garlic and ginger, just like this one — but did you know, these ingredients have antiviral, antibacterial and antioxidant properties? They’re also loaded with nutrients like vitamin C, selenium and zinc. But the super-secret immune-boosting ingredient here is… turmeric. That golden, bright spice has been heavily studied for regulating the immune system. It’s important to add a pinch of black pepper when cooking with turmeric to make it more absorbable in the body. This soup will warm you up in cooler weather and definitely send you back for seconds and thirds.

Vegan Pumpkin Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6 bowls of soup

Ingredients:

Soup
1 medium pumpkin (red kuri or kabocha squash also work well) or 3 cups unsweetened pumpkin puree (2 x 398 ml canned pumpkin)
2 tsp coconut oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 heaping tsp minced ginger
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ to 1 tsp sea salt, depending on taste
Pinch pepper
2 carrots, sliced
1 cup coconut milk
1 ½ cups veggie broth

Optional Garnish Toppings
2 tsp maple syrup
Drizzle of coconut milk
Squeeze of lime or lemon
Fresh cilantro, mint or parsley
Pinch of unsweetened shredded coconut
Small handful chopped walnuts

Directions:

1. If you’re using fresh pumpkin or squash, peel it, de-seed it and cut it into chunks.

2. Place a large pot over medium-high heat and add the coconut oil.

3. Toss in the onions, once they become golden, add in the garlic, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, salt and pepper.

Related: 20 Hearty Vegetable Soup Recipes Just in Time for Sweater Weather

4. Mix everything around so it’s coated in the spices. If your pot is becoming too dry, add a bit more coconut oil.

5. Drop in the carrots and if you’re using fresh pumpkin, add in the chunks. Toss to mix.

6. If you’re using canned pumpkin, spoon it in now, then pour in the coconut milk and broth. Stir. Bring to a boil, cover the pot and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

7. After 20 minutes, blitz the soup until it’s creamy. If you’re using a blender, be very careful as the soup will be scorching hot.

8. Once blended, taste and re-season with salt and pepper if needed. For an extra hit of sweetness add a few tsp of maple syrup. Top each bowl with a drizzle of coconut milk, a squeeze of lime or lemon, fresh herbs, shredded coconut and chopped walnuts if you’d like.

If you enjoyed Tamara and Sarah’s vegan pumpkin soup recipe, be sure to check out their simple miso chicken or no-bake chocolate oat bars.

This Cozy One-Pot Pasta and Chickpea Stew = Love at First Bite

Don’t be surprised if you instantly become smitten with this alarmingly simple, yet charming, comfort food – it really is love at first bite. The kid in you will delight in the pasta and chickpea combo, with the fun shapes making it all the more scrumptious.

Related: 25 Comforting One-Pot Recipes That Will Warm Your Belly

One-Pot Pasta and Chickpea Stew

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 (6 cups)

Related: 30 Recipes That Will Make You Rethink Canned Beans

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp olive oil
Half onion, chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 sprigs rosemary
¾ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
2 ½ Tbsp tomato paste
1 cup small pasta such as baby shells or ditalini
2 cups drained and rinsed can chickpeas
1 cup can cherry tomatoes (optional)
4 cups water or no-salt added vegetable broth
Olive oil and Parmesan for garnish

Directions:

1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, celery, and rosemary, and cook, stirring until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper, and cook 1 minute.

2. Push onion mixture to one side of pan. Add tomato paste on other side, and cook, stirring until colour deepens, 30 seconds. Add chickpeas, cherry tomatoes (if using) and water and stir to combine.

3. Add pasta; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking until pasta is al dente, following package directions.

4. Divide among bowls; drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan.

Tip: Add 1 chopped carrot to the onion mixture for a vegetable hearty stew.



Tip:
If you don’t have can cherry tomatoes, increase the tomato paste to 3 Tbsp and adjust the seasoning after adding the water.

For more quick and breezy comfort food inspiration, try these easy stuffed pasta recipes that start with store-bought noodles or this healthy three-cheese cacio e pepe in spaghetti squash form.

The One Healthy Soup That Should Always Be in Your Freezer

This immune-boosting soup is one that you should always have on hand. It’s the perfect cure when you have a cold, are battling the flu or simply need to warm up in the wintertime. This soup has so much going for it: shiitake mushrooms, turmeric, garlic and chicken bones, to name a few of the nutrient-rich ingredients. Each ingredient has a specific job to detox the body, regulate the immune system, lower inflammation, protect from aging and help prevent cancer.  

Shiitake mushrooms are nutrition powerhouses. They have a little something called beta-glucans, which support the growth of good bacteria in the gut. When the gut is populated with good bacteria, your immune system is stronger and better able to handle whichever illness gets thrown your way. A study found that eating four ounces of shiitakes a day for four weeks enhanced immunity and reduced inflammation. In addition to that powerhouse ingredient, this healthy soup would not be complete without homemade bone broth; the chicken bones provide collagen and gelatin to the soup, which helps strengthen the gut lining. A strong gut lining aids digestion and prevents bad bacteria and viruses from getting in. So, yes, this is definitely a soup you want to batch cook ahead of time.
 

Immune-Boosting Bone Broth, Chicken and Vegetable Soup

Ingredients:
1 whole chicken (2-3 lbs) or 2-3 lbs of chicken bones
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 bulb garlic (about 6 cloves)
3 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 ½ cups shiitake mushrooms, sliced (about 12 mushrooms)
1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1 inch fresh turmeric, peeled and roughly chopped (or 2 tsp dried turmeric)
1 bunch of parsley
1 tsp sea salt
½ tsp peppercorns
10 cups water
Few handfuls baby spinach (optional)

Directions:
1. Place all the ingredients, except for the water, in a large pot.
2. Then, pour the water in the pot until almost everything is submerged, but do not overflow. You will likely use around 10 cups of water.
3. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot and simmer.
4. After about half an hour, skim the top of the soup with a wide slotted spoon to discard the scum that’s risen to the top.

5. Allow to simmer on low heat for minimum 2 hours and up to 6 hours.
6. Place the soup through a sieve to catch the veggies and chicken (you can use some of the extra chicken meat to make other delicious dishes). Place the sieve over top of another large pot for the broth to go into.
7. You can serve the soup as this nutrient-rich broth. Or, you can add the carrots, mushrooms and chicken meat back into the broth. You can also stir in some baby spinach if you’d like.
8. Store the soup in airtight jars, containers or sealed bags.  Freeze them in individual portion sizes.

Looking for more nourishing winter dishes? Check out these 15 Best Vegan Soup and Stew Recipes and 15 Flavour-Packed Recipes to Boost Your Gut Health.

split-pea-soup-feature

The Lip-Smacking History of Split Pea Soup in Canada

When the first chill creeps into the air, the knee-jerk reaction for many Canucks is to get soups simmering on the stove. While we love our minestrone and hearty stews, it’s hard to beat dipping your spoon into a steaming bowl of split pea soup.

This classic stick-to-your-bones soup has been a  Quebecois favourite for over 400 years. For good reasons, too: pure comfort made from easy-to-preserve ingredients.

“Split pea soup is made of yellow split peas, ham hock, vegetables, and thyme, and it’s usually served with bread,” says Ottawa Chef Marc Miron, who is an expert on the dish. “Split pea soup is a dish that can be served as a starter or as a main.”

split-pea-soup-parkersGet the recipe for Parker’s Split Pea Soup

But where exactly did this hearty soup come from in the first place? Miron has an inkling, based on his own extensive research tracing the roots of “habitant soup.” Although he’s headed up kitchens around the world and cooked for celebs like Chef Gordon Ramsay and the Rolling Stones, this busy chef was drawn to explore the history of this delicious Canadian dish.

“It’s a beautiful staple in the Canadian cuisine, not only in Quebec,” says Miron.

The soup’s origins are murky, but Miron believes today’s recipe is likely a distant relative of soup made aboard explorer Samuel de Champlain’s ships from France. On long journeys, the ships would be stocked with ingredients that preserve for lengthy times, such as vinegar, honey, cheese, rice, legumes, and salted meats and fish.

“All of those ingredients were on board that they made soup with,” says Miron. “It was probably not the split pea soup as we know now. But it was a [salted] ham-broth with some peas in it and some vegetables.”

As more habitants – or Canada’s first settlers – arrived from France and landed on Canadian soil, the soup served on ships gradually evolved and came to include game meats, pork, and locally grown ingredients.

“The habitants depended on the forests for their meat, but they farmed pigs along with vegetables, fruit, peas, and beans,” says Miron. “Soup was always part of the meal. Looking at the setup of the table, the spoon would always be there for the soup. They had to get creative with it: basically finding out that the peas matched very well with the ham hock.”

Whether called habitant soup or soupe aux pois cassés or split pea soup, this early settler soup with many names became a staple item on the menu for Quebec’s settlers. For starters, it was a filling and nutritious meal that helped them survive harsh Canadian winters.

“Going through the winter, times were pretty hard,” says Miron. “Pea soup is something that gave them everything from vegetables to legumes to protein. It’s a meal by itself.”

Most habitant farmers also had bread ovens, partly explaining why today’s version of the soup is usually paired with a slice of warm, crusty bread.

“Bread is always part the tradition,” says Miron. “When times were rough for the habitants, you needed a full meal and bread provided for that.”

Of course, the original habitant-style soupe aux pois cassés has changed over the centuries, swapping out salted meats for ham hock, but the soup has become a Canadian classic that has spanned generations.

“My grandmother is 96 and she told me that pea soup was served every Friday,” says Maxime Constantin, the owner of Cabane à sucre Constantin in Quebec where they serve a mean bowl of split pea soup. “So it’s become a traditional meal served in every family.”

In terms of regional variations, Miron says that most recipes still “respect the basics,” adding split peas and vegetables to the soup. The wildcard that he’s witnessed in the culinary world involves the broth.

“The consistency in the soup is where you see the most difference,” says Miron. “Some have it more ‘brothy,’ and some have it thicker.”

As the dish became popular across the country, dry and canned versions of the old school recipe popped up, with the first emerging in the late 1800s, according to Miron.

“They did an instant pea soup around 1867,” says Miron. “When you invent a soup dry, it’s because it’s popular.”

Pig-and-Pea-Soup

Get the recipe for Split Pea Soup.

If you’re not in a hurry, skip the ready-made varieties, and try your hand at creating a homemade batch of delicious split pea soup. There’s the traditional recipe for Québécois-Style Pea Soup made with unsmoked ham hock, but also Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup using a smoked turkey leg, leeks, and green split peas. Or follow Ina Garten’s recipe for Parker’s Split Pea Soup, which uses chicken stock instead of ham hock.

Short on time? Whip up a batch of Chef Michael Smith’s recipe Speedy Split Pea Soup using dried split peas, bacon, and frozen peas. Or if you’re not in a rush, try his more traditional recipe for Pig and Pea Soup with a ham hock broth.

For a soup with a zing, there’s this recipe for Split Pea and Ginger Soup from The Burnt Tongue in Hamilton, Ont. A warming soup with a kick of ginger spice, this dish is hearty to the core without being too heavy.

The food experts have a few tips for making split pea soup at home. At Cabane à sucre Constantin, Maxime Constantin regularly cooks up a colossal cauldron of pea soup that serves 700 people at their family-owned sugar shack. His secret to soup success? Soak the peas overnight.

“At the start, you have to soak the peas a night before,” says Constantin. “After we roast the piece of pork with carrot and onion, we add broth and peas. It has to boil about 2 to 3 hours until the peas are soft.”

For Miron, making split pea soup is a two-step process, which starts with the broth and then the soup. While the other ingredients are important, “the ham stock has to be very good.”

“It’s like roasting a chicken – the leg doesn’t cook the same way,” says Miron. “So I always de-bone and cook it separately. The pea soup is the same. To do a good ham stock, you would need 2-3 hours, depending on the size of your ham hock, to make sure the meat is cooked and falls off the bone.”

Once the broth is complete, Miron adds vegetables and chunks of ham to the rich, flavourful stock, and simmers the concoction on the stove for 30 to 45 minutes.

No matter which split pea soup recipe you choose or how you cook the broth, take pride in the fact that you’re slurping up a Canadian classic that been trending since the days of Samuel de Champlain. Now that’s definitely worthy of a Canadian Heritage Minute!

Apple-Brie Pumpkin Soup Season is Here

Now that soup season is upon us, we’re looking to jazz up our old fall favourites, like classic, creamy pumpkin soup. In this mouthwatering version, we’ve added Gala apples to give the soup just a hint of sweetness, then we gave it the full French onion treatment, with a beautiful topping of crispy baguette and melty Brie. This stick-to-your-ribs soup is just what you need to feel like you’re living your best fall life.

pumpkin-apple-soup-with-baked-brie

Photo by Lindsay Guscott
Lindsay Guscott

Baked Brie Pumpkin and Apple Soup Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:
3 Tbsp. butter
1 small onion, sliced, about 1 1/2 cups
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 small pie pumpkin, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-in pieces, about 6 cups
2 Gala apples, peeled and cut into 1/2 pieces, about 3 cups
1 sprig rosemary, plus more for optional garnish
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 cup dry hard apple cider
900 ml vegetable stock
1/2 cup whipping cream
8 slices baguette
150g double cream Brie, rind removed and thinly sliced

sugar-pumpkins

Photo by Allison Day
Photo by Allison Day

Directions:
1. Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook until softened, 5 to 7 min.
2. Increase heat to medium-high, then stir in pumpkin and apples. Season with salt. Sauté until vegetables are lightly golden-brown, 5 to 7 min.
3. Add spices and cook until fragrant, 1 min.
4. Pour in cider. Using a wooden spoon, scrape up any brown bits from bottom of pan. Allow cider to evaporate, 1 to 2 min.
5. Add stock and rosemary sprig. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, covered, until vegetables are tender, about 15 min. Remove and discard rosemary.
6. Working in small batches, purée soup in a blender. Return to pot. Stir in cream and cook until heated through, 1 to 2 min.
7. Ladle into oven-safe bowls, then top each with 2 slices of baguette and 2 slices of cheese. Broil on high until cheese has melted and is just starting to brown, about 1 to 2 min.
8. Sprinkle with finely chopped rosemary, if desired, and serve immediately.

pumpkin-apple-soup-with-brie-crouton

Photo by Lindsay Guscott
Photo by Lindsay Guscott

Tip: If you don’t own oven-proof bowls, assemble your Brie toasts on a foil-lined baking sheet instead. Once broiled, simply transfer the toasts to your bowl.

Looking for more fall recipes? Try our Brilliant Ways to Use Butternut Squash.

Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup is Fiesta Flavour Without the Fuss

This zesty and warming soup is just asking to be on your dinner menu this week. Toppings of tortilla chips, avocado, cilantro and lime add incredible flavour and texture to a big, comforting bowl of slow-cooked shredded chicken, sweet potato, black beans and tomatoes. To make this into a vegan or vegetarian soup, simply skip the chicken, toss in another can of black beans and replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth.

Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup

Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours on high, 4 hours on low
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes on high, 4 hours 20 minutes on low
Serves: 4  

Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup

Ingredients:

Tortilla Soup
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2-1/2 cups chicken broth
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 small or 1 large yellow onion, diced
1 sweet potato, diced
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt

For Serving
1 lime, quartered
1/2 cup (about a handful per serving) tortilla chips
1/4 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
1 avocado, pitted and diced

Directions:
Tortilla Soup
1. Stir to combine all tortilla soup ingredients (except for toppings) in a large slow cooker. Replace lid and cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4 hours.

2. After time is up, shred the chicken using two forks and stir to coat with remaining soup ingredients.

Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup

For Serving:

1. Dish the tortilla soup into bowls and top each one with a squeeze of lime, tortilla chips, cilantro and avocado. Serve hot.

For tortilla soup outside of the bowl, try this family-friendly Chicken Tortilla Casserole (aka Mexican lasagna!) from The Pioneer Woman.

Red Thai Curry Slow Cooker Soup

Slow Cooker Thai Red Curry Soup That’s Easier (and Better) Than Take-Out

Thai curry is all about layering flavours, and slow-cooking the ingredients allows everything to fully meld, creating a rich, complex dish without standing at the stove for hours. Chicken, vegetables, brown rice and roasted peanuts make this bowl a complete meal, while prepared red Thai curry paste keeps things simple. With this spicy, coconut milk and chicken soup, you’ll skip the take-out once and for all.

Slow Cooker Thai Red Curry Soup with Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours on low, 4 hours on low
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes on high, 4 hours 10 minutes on low
Serves: 4


Ingredients:

Thai Red Curry Soup with Chicken
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk
1 cup chicken broth
3 Tbsp red Thai curry paste
2 Tbsp coconut sugar
1 Tbsp tamari (a gluten-free soy sauce)
1 large or 2 small yellow onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2-inch piece ginger, minced
1 cup broccoli florets
2 carrots, sliced
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

For Serving
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 cup roasted peanuts
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1 lime, quartered


Directions:
1. Whisk the coconut milk, broth, curry paste, coconut sugar and tamari together in a large slow cooker. Add the remaining soup ingredients and stir to combine. Replace lid and cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4 hours.

2. Once cooked, shred the chicken using two forks and give the soup a good stir.

For Serving:
1. Ladle soup into bowls and top each one with cooked brown rice, peanuts, cilantro and a squeeze of lime. Serve warm.

Looking for more Thai curry recipes? Try these 26 Thai Recipes to Make at Home and forget about take-out.

Celery Soup

7 Ways to Make Your Soups Creamy Without Dairy

During winter’s bitter, blustery days, a warming pot of soup is top of mind. If you’re craving a rich and comforting soup without adding the heaviness of cream, you’ve got plenty of options in your crisper or pantry. It’s time to think outside the box (or carton) with these seven easy, dairy-free thickeners.

Vegan Cream of Celery Soup

Creamy soups, like this vegan cream of celery soup, don’t have to be loaded with fat or heavy cream.

1. In A Slurry
When it comes down to it, some creamy soups are just white sauces with more liquid added. Building a roux from flour and butter (or margarine), cooking for a few minutes to remove the raw flour flavour, and adding chicken or vegetable stock will give you a sturdy soup without a whisper of cream. Cornstarch, on the other hand, is mixed with a few tablespoons of liquid and then stirred into the soup after it has come to a boil. Either way, the tricks you use to thicken a gravy — flour pastes, cornstarch slurries or even add-ins such as arrowroot or tapioca — can give your soup a thicker mouth feel.

2. Koo Koo For Coconuts 
For creaminess without cream, full-fat coconut milk will add a luscious sheen and body to your broth (you can use low-fat if you must, but it won’t give you as much richness). In Thai cuisine, coconut milk is added to flavourful curry pastes to produce creamy soups that pack a punch, such as this Thai Coconut Curry Corn Soup. If coconuts aren’t your thing, try subbing in soy or nut milk instead, although your soup will be a little thinner in consistency.

3. Against The Grains
Anyone who has ever made a Chinese congee knows the thickening power of rice — absorbing liquid and releasing starch to add a velvety texture when cooked. Add half a cup of rice at the beginning of the simmering period for your soup, and blend when the grains have plumped out. Pressed for time? Try using quick cooking rice instead to shorten the simmering time needed.

4. The Power Of Spuds
Don’t forget the humble potato — adding just one can add significant body and creaminess to your soup. Peel your spud if you desire, or leave it unpeeled and well scrubbed if you’re pureeing the soup afterwards. Just be warned that unless you’re using a full blender, you may end up with visible bits of potato skin sprinkled throughout. A smaller dice or thin slices will help the potato break down quicker in the boiling liquid. Sweet potato or yam can also be used, but keep in mind it will affect the colour of your finished product. You can also raid the fridge for yesterday’s mashed potatoes, leftover potato soup or baked sweet potatoes for a head start.

5. Back To Your Roots
Don’t stop at potatoes — chopped root vegetables, such as parsnips, turnips, rutabaga or carrots, all make economical and easy ways to add velvety texture. Beyond the basics, Jerusalem artichokes or sunchokes, taro or water chestnuts can also be cooked and puréed for body. Try  sneaking in some cauliflower or broccoli for some added vegetable goodness.

6. In A Nutshell
Soft nuts, such as cashews, add a creamy texture when soaked, such as in this vegan cream of celery soup. Nuts can be pre-soaked the night before, or cooked directly in simmering liquid to soften before blending.

7. Check Your Pulses
White beans, such as cannelloni, release a starchiness when cooked that will taste creamy on the palate without providing a dominant flavour. Soak and cook your own, or open a can for convenience, if you desire. Chickpeas or lentils, on the other hand, will impact the taste of your finished soup, but also provide a hearty helping, especially when paired with salty pancetta or bacon.

Looking for comforting soup recipes? Try one of these 21 Noodle Soups to Slurp Up This Winter.

The Best Vegan Chicken Noodle Soup

When the weather gets chilly and all you want to do is stay cozy inside, we know exactly what you’ll be craving: a steaming bowl of chicken noodle soup! Our favourite childhood meal, this faux chicken noodle soup is made entirely from plant-based ingredients and we promise you won’t notice the difference.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Serves: 6-8

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Ingredients:
1 cup diced yellow onion
1 cup diced carrot
1 cup diced celery
3 garlic cloves, minced
7 cups low sodium vegetable stock
170 g meatless chicken strips (approximately 2 cups)
200 g fettuccine noodles
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 Tbsp sunflower oil
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp dried sage
1/4tsp ground pepper

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Directions:
1. Pull apart the meatless chicken strips with your hands to make smaller pieces that look shredded.
2. In a large pot, heat sunflower oil over medium heat and then add meatless chicken strips and brown for 1 minute.
3. Add basil, thyme, sage, sea salt and ground pepper, and continue browning the strips for another 5 minutes.
4. Add onion and sauté for another 2 minutes, allowing them to soften and sweat, stirring occasionally.
5. At this point, add a bit of vegetable stock to lift up the brown bits off the bottom of the pot, stir in celery and carrots and sauté for 4-5 minutes.
6. Add minced garlic and sauté for 2 minutes.
7. Add all the vegetable stock and noodles (you can use any type of pasta, which may vary the cook time) and stir to combine.
8. Cover pot with lid, lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until noodles are tender and cooked through.
9. In the last 2 minutes of cooking, add in parsley.
10. Serve immediately.

French Onion Soup Casserole for Chilly Days

The biting cold of winter requires major comfort foods to indulge in, and French onion soup is at the top of our list. While we love a big bowl of soup, turning it into a cheesy casserole is a no-brainer. It’s super easy and delivers huge on flavour. The combination of rich, caramelized onions, gooey melted cheese and toasted baguette packed with the deep flavour of French onion soup will leave you weak in the knees and totally satisfied.

onion soup casserole

Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Serves: 6

Ingredients:
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
4 cups sliced Spanish onion
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp Madeira wine
2 1/2 cups beef stock
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp black pepper
2 sprigs fresh thyme
6-8 1 inch slices of French baguette, toasted
1 cup of Gruyere cheese, shredded
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
1 Tbsp butter, melted

Directions:
1. Heat butter in a large pan over medium. Once butter is bubbly and foaming, add the onions and salt. Stir onions to coat in butter and let cook until deep brown and caramelized, about 30-40 minutes, stirring intermittently.
2. Once onions have caramelized, pour in Madeira wine, stir and continue to cook until alcohol is evaporated and liquid is fully absorbed into onions, about 1 minute.
3. Preheat oven to 400°F. Add beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, black pepper and thyme. Increase heat to medium and cook until stock reduces by about 1/3, about 5 minutes.
4. Pour contents of pan into a medium-size casserole dish. Remove thyme sprigs. Arrange toasted baguette slices over onion mixture and press down allowing the bread to absorb the liquid. Sprinkle with cheese and drizzle with melted butter.
5. Bake in oven until cheese is melted and golden, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Looking for more comforting dishes? Try Ina Garten’s Most Comforting Casseroles.

Mini Bacon Grilled Cheese with Tomato Soup Shooters

Next time you’re hosting a game-day feast or party during the cold-weather months, try serving this creative spin on a comfort-food classic.

Everyone loves a grilled cheese sandwich, but the addition of bacon, mustard and cherry tomatoes are what sets this dish apart from the rest. To really take this already delicious dish up a notch, we’re serving it a with mini tomato soup sipper that’s spiked with a touch of beer. Comfort food at its best!

Mini-Bacon-Grilled-Cheese

Tomato & Beer Soup Shooters

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Makes: 16 servings

Ingredients:
3 Tbsp butter
1 onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup beer
2 cups strained tomatoes (passata)
1 cup vegetable broth
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
Pinch granulated sugar
3 Tbsp sour cream or crème fraiche
2 Tbsp chopped fresh tarragon or chives

Directions:
1. In saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Sauté onion and garlic, stirring often, until soft and starting to turn golden, about 8 minutes. Deglaze with beer. Bring to boil; reduce heat and simmer until beer is almost evaporated, 5 minutes.
3. Add tomatoes and broth. Bring to simmer; cook, stirring, for 10 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and sugar. (Tip: Let cool slightly. Refrigerate in airtight container for up to 24 hours. Reheat before continuing.)
4. Transfer sour cream into small sandwich baggie. Pour soup into shot glasses or small demi-tasse cups. Snip tiny piece of corner from baggie and squeeze a small drizzle of sour cream over top of soup shooters. Sprinkle with tarragon.

Note: Make sure you choose a not-too-bitter beer, preferably from a local microbrewery, such as a malty ale or Belgian-style wheat beer.

Mini-Bacon-Grilled-Cheese2

Mini Bacon Grilled Cheese

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Makes: 16 sandwiches

Ingredients:
1 baguette, sliced into 32, 1/2-inch thick slices
1/4 cup softened butter
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
11/4 cup shredded old Cheddar cheese (125 g)
8 slices cooked bacon, sliced into 4 pieces each
8 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
2. Spread butter over top of 16 baguette slices. Arrange, butter-side down on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread tops with Dijon mustard. Sprinkle cheese over half of the pieces; top each with 1 bacon piece.
3. Spread butter on remaining 16 baguette slices, topping each cheese and bacon-covered piece with an un-topped slice, butter-side up.
4. Bake turning once, until golden and cheese is melted, 8 to 10 minutes.
5. Skewer each sandwich with a tomato half with a toothpick.
6. Serve with Tomato & Beer Soup Shooters.

Does Chicken Soup Really Cure a Cold?

Cozying up with a bowl of chicken soup certainly feels good this time of year, whether you’re on the mend or feeling in top form. If you happen to catch a cold, you’re probably looking for anything that will help ease those aches, soothe your tender throat and clear your sinuses. And while chicken soup is certainly comforting, can it really help make you feel better?Here, we dive into the facts to uncover the truth behind this old (and tasty) kitchen remedy.

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Fact: Chicken soup helps relieve congestion.

Enjoying a bowl of chicken soup can help ease congestion, according to Mayo Clinic. Warm liquids, like the savoury broth in chicken soup, make your nose run (in a good way), working to clear uncomfortable nasal congestion. The more your nose runs, the better, as this means the virus has less contact time with the lining of your nose.

Try this recipe: Tyler Florence’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Fact: Chicken soup can rehydrate you.

Eating and drinking when you have a cold can seem highly unappealing, but staying hydrated is key to a quick recovery. Chicken broth delivers hydration along with a bit of salt so your body retains the liquids more effectively.

Try this recipe: Ina Garten’s Chicken Soup 

Fiction: Chicken soup can boost your immune system.

You can’t truly “boost” you immune system, but you can support it — and chicken soup may help in this area with its rich mineral profile. Your body needs energy (calories) for recovery, and chicken soup brings this in a highly digestible form, especially helpful when you don’t feel like eating. And, the ingredients in chicken soup, like garlic, onion and carrots contain potent immune-supportive compounds.

Try this recipe: Michael Smith’s Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

Fact: Chicken soup has medicinal properties.

Surprisingly, it might. A study published in the journal Chest discussed blood samples of volunteers given chicken soup. These samples showed that the soup lessened the movement of neutrophils, which may be beneficial to the upper respiratory tract (where colds tend to linger). While this is just one study, it may make that soup you’re eating taste just a little better.

Try this recipe: Ricardo Larrivée’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Fact: Chicken soup eases an upset stomach.

A common cold can make your stomach ache, and while inherently flavourful, a classic (not spicy!) chicken soup is mild, cold-friendly food. Homemade versions, made with chicken bones, have the added benefit of gelatin, which can nourish the intestinal tract.

Try this recipe: Chuck Hughes’ Chicken Soup with Ground Chicken Meatballs

Fact: Chicken soup makes you feel better, faster.

While researchers realize there’s a bit of a placebo effect going on, slurping up chicken soup may help to speed up recovery thanks to its rich protein content, a macronutrient needed in larger amount for those who are sick.

Try this recipe: Awesome Chicken Soup for the Lazy Soul

Verdict:

Though it may not “cure” the common cold, research shows promise that the combination of the mineral-rich broth, lean protein and easy-to-digest cooked vegetables helps to make you feel better in an almost magic way.

Even if you’re on the fence about the science, it’s tough to argue about the comfort food factor chicken soup brings in both its aroma and taste. Enjoy one of our many chicken soup recipes and get well soon.

WestCoastFishChowderBowl

The Seafood Chowder That Represents Vancouver Island

By Amy Bronee

One of the perks of living on the southern tip of Vancouver Island is being able to go for a walk on the beach any time of year. In the cold months, the blustery winds churn up the ocean, sending waves crashing onto the rocky shore. Standing there looking out at fishing boats in the strait, it’s easy to start daydreaming about comfort seafood, the kind that warms the belly and soothes the soul. It was after just such a walk that I first made this creamy fish chowder. It uses seafood commonly found around Vancouver Island – salmon and rockfish – along with diced potato, carrot and chopped kale. Use chicken or vegetable broth if it’s what you have on hand, but nothing beats chowder made with homemade fish stock. I save fish bones and tails and simmer them in water with onions, carrots and celery, then freeze the stock for another day. For me, this fish chowder is Vancouver Island in a bowl.

West Coast Fish Chowder, Courtesy Amy Bronee,  FamilyFeedbag.com, Victoria

With rockfish and salmon, this chowder represents some of the West Coast’s best seafood.

WestCoastFishChowderBowl

Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
Yields: 4 to 5 servings

Ingredients
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
1 cup (250 mL) diced yellow onion
1 cup (250 mL) diced peeled carrot
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
1 tsp (5 mL) dried thyme
3 cups (750 mL) peeled diced potato
3 oz (85 g) smoked candied salmon nuggets, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
4 cups (1 L) fish stock (or chicken or vegetable stock)
10 oz (280 g) rockfish fillet, cubed (or other firm white fish)
1 cup (250 mL) roughly chopped kale
1/2 cup (125 mL) heavy cream
1.5 oz (45 mL) white wine

Directions
1. Melt butter in soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot and salt. Cook for 5 minutes to soften, stirring frequently.
2. Stir in flour and thyme to coat vegetables. Add potato and candied salmon. Pour in stock. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Stir in rockfish, kale and heavy cream. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, uncovered, for 10 more minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat. Stir in wine.

FamilyFeedbag
Amy’s home-cooking blog FamilyFeedbag.com has earned her several recognitions, including a Jamie Oliver Blog of the Month award and being named to Western Living magazine’s list of the Top 40 Foodies Under 40. Amy’s bestselling cookbook The Canning Kitchen: 101 Simple Small Batch Recipes is a celebration of home canning traditions in the modern home kitchen. Through her hands-on cooking classes in Victoria, Amy loves to connect with other home cooks and make simple, delicious food together.

Spicy Pumpkin and Sausage Soup

Whenever Fall rolls around, I start to go a little soup crazy. The spicy Italian sausage adds nice heat to this hearty, vegetable-heavy bowl of goodness. With the chickpeas, chunks of zucchini and kale and thick broth, this soup almost feels more like a stew. Needless to say, it is best enjoyed with family or  friends.

pumpkinsoup

Cook Time: 1 hour
Serves: 5-6

Ingredients:
3 cups fresh pumpkin (1 cubed)
2 large Italian sausages (casing removed)
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 yellow onion (finely chopped)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
4 cups chicken broth
2 cups zucchini (halved, 1/2 sliced)
3 cups kale (stems removed, loosely chopped)
1 14 oz can chickpeas
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp chili powder
Salt and pepper
Olive oil

Directions:
1. Start with preheating your oven to 400°F. Toss the chunks of pumpkin with a bit of olive oil, season with salt and pepper and let them roast in the oven until they’re fork tender, about 35 minutes.
2. While that’s happening, cook the sausage in a large pot on medium-high heat, breaking it up with a spoon as you go, until well-browned. De-glaze the pot with the red wine, then add the chopped onion and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes or so.
3. Next, pour in the broth, remaining vegetables and bring to a boil. Reduce to low heat and let simmer for 20 minutes.
4. Once the pumpkin is ready, remove from oven, place into a food processor or blender with cream and purée until smooth. Stir the pumpkin puree into the pot, along with remaining ingredients. Let simmer for another 20 minutes.
5. Season to taste with salt and pepper to finish.

A Winning Canadian Soup Recipe

By Jordan Zakoor, as told to Elsa Goldstein

Jordan Zakoor entered her recipe for Citrus Red Lentil Soup as part of the PotashCorp Wintershines Warm the Heart Novice Soup Cook-Off, an event held in conjunction with the PotashCorp Wintershines Festival. And win the cook-off she did! This comforting lentil concoction is also what she serves at the Underground Cafe, a restaurant she co-owns in the Riversdale neighbourhood of Saskatoon.

My paternal grandfather was born in Windsor, Ont., but his family emigrated from Lebanon. It was his mother who taught my grandma how to cook Middle Eastern–style dishes, which we ate a lot of growing up, from hummus to tabbouleh to these amazing stuffed grape leaves. I remember my childhood food being a mix of these types of recipes in addition to more classic family-style dishes like roast beef and potatoes.

Growing up in Windsor, I ate at a lot of Lebanese restaurants as well. Most places had a staple lentil and lemon soup on their menu, and I was set on re-creating the dish at home while adding my own twist. My Citrus Red Lentil Soup recipe is inspired by my grandmother’s Lebanese cooking as well as the soup I so often enjoyed while eating out with my family in Windsor.

I now make this soup at the Underground Cafe, which I co-own and operate in Saskatoon. My partner started the café about 3 years ago, then I joined this past year. We’ve expanded the café since I joined and, while it didn’t start this way, I’ve been cooking more and more. When I added my soup recipe to the restaurant’s menu, a lot of our customers gave it rave reviews.

I’ve always loved cooking with lentils; they’re healthy, high in fibre and iron and really versatile. I like to use them in salads and pasta dishes, plus in tomato sauces and soups. Growing up, my aunt and my mom used them in a lot of vegetarian dishes, so I was very exposed to their flavour and texture.

For me, Canadian food is all about using local ingredients whenever possible. Sometimes, this can be a challenge because those ingredients might be harder to hunt down, but it’s always worth it. Here in Saskatchewan, we use a lot of locally grown grains, legumes and root vegetables, which I love. The red lentils I use for this particular recipe are also grown here in Saskatchewan. I pick them up from the SaskMade Marketplace, a small market that sells mainly locally sourced goods.

I think everyone can enjoy this recipe because it only uses a handful of ingredients yet manages to be both hearty and refreshing at the same time, thanks to the use of filling lentils and bright lemon juice.

Citrus Red Lentil Soup, courtesy of Jordan Zakoor

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Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients
3 tbsp (45 mL) olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp (15 mL) ground cumin
2 tsp (10 mL) dried cilantro
1 tsp (5 mL) dried parsley
½ tsp (2 mL) salt + more to taste
½ tsp (2 mL) ground cayenne pepper
6 cups (1.5 L) vegetable broth
2½ cups (625 mL) split red lentils
¾ cup (175 mL) freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp (15 mL) liquid honey

Directions
1. In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat Sauté onion until translucent and slightly softened. Stir in garlic, cumin, cilantro, parsley, ½ tsp (2 mL) salt and cayenne pepper. Sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour in broth.
2. Rinse lentils well in lukewarm water. Drain.
3. Once broth is close to boiling, stir in lentils; simmer, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. (Optional: Once lentils are tender, purée soup slightly to get smoother consistency. The lentils tend to break down the more you boil them.)
4. Stir in lemon juice and honey until well combined. Adjust salt to taste.

Click to print, save or share this Citrus Red Lentil Soup recipe.

Do you have a delicious dish to share with the rest of Canada? Submit your recipe for a chance to be featured on Great Canadian Cookbook and Food Network Canada!

Borscht: ‘My Family’s Version of Chicken Soup’

By Sam Yachiw, as told to Leslie Wu

Sam Yachiw shares her love of curling with local kids through the nonprofit Curl Saskatoon. At home, this fourth-generation Ukrainian-Canadian loves sharing a hearty bowl of her baba’s borscht with family and friends. In fact, Yachiw’s favourite way to explore her heritage is to navigate her grandparents’ dinner table, where some of her fondest memories take place.

Borscht was my family’s version of chicken soup, fed to us when we were sick or sad. I’ve had it since I was a toddler, and I’ve always liked its unique taste and that warm feeling with every mouthful. It would have been my great, great-grandmother who brought the recipe over from Ukraine. The core recipe is the same, but it’s been adapted and tweaked over the years.

With my baba [grandmother] and dido [grandfather], we make a big batch of this soup once a year: about 20 single-serving jars and a whole bunch of larger jars, which are distributed among the family. On borscht cooking day, we start early in the morning with the chopping. The whole process takes about two hours, or even three, depending on how much we’ve been talking. We’re usually done by noon, then we’ll heat up some fresh borscht for lunch. For most of the afternoon, we come together as family and just talk! We’re such a close-knit family, and I love it.

We sit down to share borscht as the second course at Ukrainian Easter. This holiday is different for every family, depending on how traditional you are. For us, it’s lunch after church, which turns into about four hours of feasting, then relaxing in a comfortable chair to chat with someone you may not have seen in many years. My grandparents know so many people I’ve never met in the 27 years I’ve been alive, so there’s always someone new at the kitchen or dining table. Last year, they hosted a lady who was in their wedding party more than 60 years ago.

Borscht has brought my baba and I together. Most of my memories of her are in the kitchen; it’s part of who she is, and she’s always been like that. My grandfather, on the other hand, doesn’t really do a lot of cooking, but he helps out. Any memory I’ve had, he’s been around helping, especially if it’s a bigger meal. My baba’s a social butterfly, so she loves to cook for people. It didn’t matter if we were just visiting for a day or a weekend, there were these amazing, extravagant meals. It’s something I learned from her, and I try to continue this tradition even now with my own friends; we all get together and celebrate, even if it’s just over an everyday meal. Food is one thing that brings everybody together—it doesn’t matter what culture you’re in.

Baba’s Borscht, courtesy of Sam Yachiw

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Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1½ hours
Yield: 10 to 12 servings

Ingredients
2 tsp (10 ml) salt
4 cups (1 L) beets, peeled and shredded
2 carrots, diced
1 large onion, chopped
1 large potato, diced
? cup (75 mL) diced celery
2 tbsp (30 mL) white vinegar
1 cup (250 mL) canned diced tomatoes
1 can tomato soup
1 tbsp (15 mL) fresh or frozen dill

Directions
1. Add salt to 8 cups (2 L) water. Cook peeled and shredded beets for 30 minutes.
2. Add carrots, onion, potato and celery; simmer for 30 minutes.
3. Add vinegar, tomatoes, tomato soup and dill; simmer for about 15 minutes. (Add peas and/or beans, if you like.) Cook until vegetables are tender. Serve with borscht.

Click to print, save or share this hearty borscht recipe.

Do you have a delicious dish to share with the rest of Canada? Submit your recipe for a chance to be featured on Great Canadian Cookbook and Food Network Canada!

Super Easy French Onion Soup

This is a pretty standard, classic dish — not much to change, only to tweak. Seasonings are up to you, so make them personal. Use vegetable broth instead of beef if you’re vegetarian, or use chicken stock if you’re just looking for lighter fare. This version is very heavy on the onions, so reduce those if you find them overpowering.

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Ingredients:

2 Tbsp butter
6 medium to large yellow onions, sliced in half and then into half rounds
3/4 cup vermouth (like Noilly Prat)
2 cloves garlic, grated or minced
8 cups beef broth
1 bay leaf
3 large sprigs fresh thyme
Salt & pepper
Round slices of crusty bread (optionally buttered on both sides)
1 cups grated Swiss Gruyère
1/2 cup grated Parmesan

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Directions:

  1. In a large, deep saucepan, heat the butter on medium high. Add in onions and sauté for 30 minutes. The onions should begin to caramelize and turn brown. Remember to stir often so nothing sticks to the bottom, but scraping some of the brown bits into the onions is a good thing.
  2. Add garlic and sauté 3 minutes. Deglaze saucepan with vermouth, and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
  3. Add stock, herbs and salt & pepper.
  4. Bring to a boil, tunr down and simmer for anywhere from 1 hour to 1 hour and 45 minutes. The longer the flavours have to meld, the better.
  5. In oven proof bowls, ladle the soup. Top with some crusty bread, sprinkle on the cheese and pop under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly and brown. Bon Appetit!

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Tip: Try this as a showy appetizer (in small bowls) at your next get together, or savour it alongside a light spinach salad as a full meal. Whatever you choose, just be sure to use good quality cheese, it makes all the difference.