OK, let no doubt exist: we needed something warm and with a kick to it. The weather was icy and lingering (is again today, as well. Thank goodness I have a sealed container of this mixture left over for my lunch.); we needed something that warmed down to the toenails. For such a time as this I'd been saving my Zesty Tomato Soup recipe. Out with the ingredients.
For the 1 can vegetable stock called for in the recipe I subbed 14 ounces of my own brew. I boiled 2 stalks of fresh celery, 1/2 cup chopped green peppers, and 1/2 cup corn (fresh veggies I had on hand) in about two cups water and let it simmer for about 30 minutes to make my own broth so I could control the sodium content. I measured the liquid to be sure I was adding 14 ounces. Then besides the broth I added to the soup-makings these veggies as well.
The minced garlic and red-pepper flakes did their job well. This garden-fresh soup with a kick kept us warmed up (in a good way) long after mealtime. When the ice blasted us, we were ready with this delicious warmer.
Zesty Tomato Soup
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon oregano, dried
4 cups fresh tomatoes, diced (or 2 28-ounce cans diced no-salt added tomatoes)
1 (14-ounce) can vegetable stock, reduced sodium (or your own homemade vegetable stock)
2 cups water
1/2 cup fresh corn cut from cob, 1 stalk celery, 1/2 cup chopped green pepper (add these if you've made your own stock)
In a stock pot heat olive oil. Add garlic, red pepper, and oregano. Saute until garlic simmers. With your hands crush the tomatoes over the stock pot. Add the vegetable stock and water. (If you've made your own stock, add the vegetables in the stock at this point.) Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.