Chicken

Are your toes frozen? Perhaps your fingers feel more like ice than flesh and bone. Whatever you do, don’t touch the thermostat. Instead, get up and move, and make a big pot of body-warming soup. Soup is one of the easiest dishes to make and — if concocted with care — is filled with tons of nutrient-rich vegetables and spices.

Over the years, Organic Authority has posted wonderful soup recipes. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorites for your reading – and tasting – pleasure.

Short Rib Stew with Paprika Sour Cream

Beef

Soup ingredients

3 pound (1.5 kg) short ribs, halved

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

6 cloves garlic, minced

2 celery ribs, chopped

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

3 cups (24 fl oz/750 ml) dry red wine

2 bay leaves

41/2 cups (36 fl oz/1.1 l) beef broth

15 ounces cannellini or other white beans, soaked and drained

14 1/2 ounces diced tomatoes

1/4 cup (1/3 oz/10 g) chopped flat-leaf parsley

For the paprika sour cream

2/3 cup (51/2 oz/170 g) sour cream

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

Salt

Method

Season the short ribs with salt and pepper and refrigerate for at least 6 hours. Remove from the refrigerator, bring to room temperature, and season again with salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). In a large sauté pan, warm the oil over high heat until very hot. Sear the short ribs until they are browned on all sides, 6–8 minutes, then transfer to a large, heavy ovenproof pot.

Reduce the heat under the sauté pan to medium, add the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot, and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the wine and bay leaves, raise the heat to high, and boil until the liquid has been reduced by half, 10–12 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Pour the contents of the sauté pan into the pot. Cover tightly, transfer to the oven, and cook for 21/2 hours.

Remove the short ribs from the pot and, when they are cool enough to handle, remove the meat from the bones and shred into bite-sized pieces. Strain the braising liquid and reserve 11/4 cups (10 fl oz/310 ml); discard the vegetables left in the strainer.

Put the shredded meat and the reserved braising liquid back into the pot and set over medium heat. Stir in the beans and the tomatoes with their juices and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in the parsley and season with salt and pepper.

To make the paprika sour cream, in a bowl, stir together the sour cream, lemon juice, paprika, and 1/4 tsp salt. Serve the stew, topped with a generous dollop of the paprika sour cream.

Appears with permission from Williams-Sonoma Soup of the Day: 365 Recipes for Every Day of the Year. Recipes by Kate McMillan; photographs by Erin Kunkel. Copyright 2011 by Weldon Owen Inc. and Williams-Sonoma Inc.

Yield: 4 servings

Creamy (Cream-Free) Potato Leek Bisque

Leek

Ingredients

2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil

3 pounds of leeks

3/4 teaspoon of salt

1.5 pounds of Yukon Gold potatoes

3 cups of organic nonfat milk or non-dairy substitute

2 cups of organic chicken broth

3 tablespoons of lemon juice

Ground white pepper

Fresh chives for garnishing

1/4 cup of pitted, oil-cured olives

3 anchovies

8 slices of baguette, preferably whole wheat

Method

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.

Meanwhile, trim and discard the dark green tops and white roots of the leeks. Split the leeks in half and wash them, then slice them into the pot, adding a dash of salt. Cook them for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are very tender but not brown. If they begin to stick, add a little water and adjust the heat.

Meanwhile, peel and dice the potatoes.

When the leeks have softened, take out about one-third cup and set it aside. Add the potatoes to the Dutch oven with the milk and broth. Bring the mixture to a simmer, but don’t let it boil. Continue simmering, stirring occasionally, 10 to 15 minutes until the potatoes are very tender.

Meanwhile, mince the olives and anchovies. Add them to the leeks you pulled out, and mix them well with a dash of pepper. Toast the baguette slices and top them with the mixture.

Puree the soup with an immersion blender, or in batches in a regular blender. Season it with lemon juice, salt and pepper. Serve each bowl with a floating crouton and a sprinkle of chives.

This recipe is modified from Eating Well

Yield: 8, 1 cup servings

Autumn Lentil & Pumpkin (or Sweet Potato) Stew with Cilantro Oil

Lentil

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup chopped red onion

1 cup chopped carrots

2 teaspoons ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon allspice

3 cloves garlic, minced

4 cups vegetable broth

4 cups peeled, diced pumpkin, squash, or sweet potato (from about 1 medium pumpkin or 3 sweet potatoes)

1 tablespoon honey, optional

1 cup dried green or red lentils

Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

¼ cup thinly sliced fresh mint, for serving

Cilantro Oil:

1 cup packed cilantro leaves

¼ cup olive oil

Method

Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium; add onion and carrots and cook until softened, stirring, about 3 minutes. Add cumin, cinnamon, allspice and garlic; stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add broth, pumpkin and optional honey to stockpot; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook 10 minutes.

Add lentils to stockpot; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until lentils are softened, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the cilantro oil: Puree cilantro and oil in a blender until smooth. Strain with a fine mesh strainer in to a small bowl; set aside.

To serve stew: Season to taste with salt and pepper; stir in fresh mint. Spoon into serving bowls; drizzle with cilantro oil and enjoy immediately.

Yield: 4 servings

None of these sound tasty? Organic Authority has multiple soup recipes here.

Image: Ron Dollete, from Mom’s Chicken Noodle Soup Made Easy