For January's "Families, Create! Make and Play Carnival" my family "cuddled up" for a hot bowl of soup with grilled egg and cheese sandwiches. We were inspired by the book, Perfect Soup, that we borrowed from the library.
We read it before bed one night and decided that we, too, would make the perfect soup for dinner this week. It just so happens, we read another book the night before we made soup called Dancin' in the Kitchen! So, of course, making soup the next night turned into a dancing party. We cranked up the music and jammed as we pulled out veggies and grains and tossed 'em in the pot. Then as it cooked away we made up our own songs about soup and danced to them!
Since we are regular soup makers and eaters, we thought it appropriate to share our little formula for the perfect soup.
You must have:
- About 4 cups of several veggies, cut into bite sized pieces. A few of our favorite combinations are potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, celery and broccoli or green kale and potatoes or sweet potatoes, winter squash, carrots, onions and parsnips.
- About 8 cups of vegetable or chicken broth, or a combination of broth and tomato juice (from canned tomatoes, perhaps)
- A couple cups of grains. Some of our favorites are small pastas, rice and barley.
- A couple cups of protein. We like to toss in small pieces of chicken or steak or make it vegetarian with lentils.
- A few tablespoon of herbs and some garlic. A couple of our favorite combinations are (with the first veggie combo) oregano, parsley, and bay leaf or (with the second veggie combo) rosemary, thyme and bay leaf.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
It's easy for kids to be involved in soup making. Everett gets to chop soft veggies with a butter knife. We make our own chicken stock and made some that day to use for our soup, so Everett got to reuse the carrots for our soup and cut them up.
It's also easy for him to tear kale or chard into pieces and add it straight to the pot.
As a time saver, when I cook up some grains like rice or barley, I double or triple what I need and freeze some. Then all we have to do for nights like this is defrost it (at least a little) and Everett can pour it right in.
We soak, rinse and strain our lentils then add them to the pot.
I add the herbs and stock. Then we bring the soup to a boil, reduce heat and let it simmer for a few hours to let the flavors meld. Delicious!
There is nothing like the perfect bowl of soup and a grilled cheese (or egg and cheese) sandwich for dinner on a cold winter night.... Especially if you're cuddling up to read afterwards!
Visit Code Name: Mama and Living Peacefully with Children to find out how you can participate in the next Families, Create! Carnival.
Our February theme is "Heroes and Heroines" - what can your family create this month to celebrate the heroes and heroines in your lives?
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
- What's the perfect way to snuggle up on a cold winter night? Acacia at Fingerpaint & Superheroes knows the answer: make the perfect soup!
- Simply decorated jars by children bring warmth and light to cold Winter's days at Living Peacefully with Children.
- The ArtsyMama teaches us how to create a no sew fleece throw inspired by your favorite snuggle time book.
- Movies made from books are often pretty poor representations, but this family-made movie from Dionna at Code Name: Mama is monster-ific!
- Aunalise at My Sweet Potatoes created a cozy for her Kindle, to protect it from little hands that think they need to cuddle with it.
- What better way to cuddle and get cozy than in new jammies made by Mama G @ Z everyday things?
- Inspired by her family's love of the Harry Potter series, Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children decided to make a series of ornaments based on the theme.
- Laura at Nestled Under Rainbows shared a reflection on and a celebration of snuggies, lovies, cuddlies and specials.
- Little Hedgehog got a wonderful idea when his red hat from Father Christmas didn't fit, and Megan at Purple Dancing Dahlias got a wonderful idea to knit a sweet hedgehog!
- Monster-inspired artwork by a monster-clad kid. Despite the growling, he really is cuddly! Monster love courtesy of Dionna at Code Name: Mama.
- Arpita at Up, Down & Natural shares a quick tutorial on how to make your very own Pippalily inspire pouch sling, with zippered pocket & key ring, and a matching nursing cover to boot!
- Amy at Anktangle finally completed something cuddly and warm for her son Daniel: his very own afghan, crocheted with love by Momma.
- Who'd want to cuddle with a cuttlefish? Aunalise at My Sweet Potatoes thinks you might want to cuddle up with this sweet plush cuttlefish!
- In an attempt to slow down and relax while watching her children, Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children decided to give knitting another chance.