Get out your Crock-Pots and Instant Pots, because it’s soup season.
On a cold and dreary winter day, there’s no food that can quite hit the spot at mealtime like soup.
Slow-cooked soups, such as potato soup, chili or Brunswick stew, can fill the air in homes with delicious-smelling aromas as they cook. And many soups need little-to-no prep, making it an easy way to get dinner on the table, especially on those busy weekdays.
There are also several ways to cook soup. Some prefer using a Crock-Pot, a simple way to come home to a fully prepared meal in the evening, while others prefer to cook soup on the stove top. In recent years, the multicooker Instant Pot has gained popularity. Electronically controlled, it is a combined pressure cooker and slow cooker with several other cooking functions. Many prefer the easy-to-use pressure cooker feature, which dramatically reduces cooking time.
And, with a quick Google search, it’s easy to find the cook time for any soup recipe when going from using a slow cooker to a pressure cooker.
In pre-pandemic times, an annual event in Carrollton, A Taste of Soup, gave attendees the opportunity to try out new soups to add to their cooking repertoire.
Because of the coronavirus, the much-loved event will not be held this year.
In the past, the event, which also featured an exhibit showcasing the work of several Carroll County artists, served up a sampling of six soups, with each recipe carefully selected by members of the sponsoring organization — the Carroll Society for the Preservation of Antiquities.
A Taste of Soup has brought out people from all over to the Carrollton Community House, and it serves as a fundraiser for the Antiquities Society, which preserves the county’s history through the Merrill Museum and the preservation of other buildings. The society owns the Merrill building and the old Conservative office and has a 99-year lease on the old Carroll County Jail, all located in Carrollton.
The funds for its preservation projects come from membership dues, donations, the Pioneer Day Festival booth rental, grants and A Taste of Soup.
Since the Antiquities Society will not have A Taste of Soup as a fundraiser this year, donations or new members are welcome. For more information, call 237-6910 or mail donations to P.O. Box 541, Carrollton, MS 38917.
For those feeling the absence of this year’s event, here are four easy-to-make soup recipes provided by the Carroll Society for the Preservation of Antiquities that have been A Taste Soup crowd-pleasers in the past.
2 (16-ounce) cans stewed tomatoes
1 can whole-kernel corn
1 can creamed corn
1 large can white chicken meat
1 can Castlebury barbecue pork
1 can Castlebury barbecue beef
Mix all of the ingredients together and cook for one hour, or put in Crock-Pot for two to three hours.
An extra can of pork or sauteed onions can be added.
Note: There are other brand names that can be used instead of Castlebury, such as Lloyd’s or Hormel fresh meat cases. Double the other ingredients to keep proportions the same.
7 CAN CHICKEN TACO SOUP
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 (14.5-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can sweet corn, drained
1 (12.5-ounce) can chicken breast, drained and flaked
1 (10-ounce) can green enchilada sauce
1 (14-ounce) can low-sodium chicken broth
1 packet taco seasoning
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Combine all ingredients into a large soup pot, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with tortilla chips, shredded cheese, sour cream and avocado.
Note: You can use 1½ cups of your own shredded chicken if that is what you prefer.
BURGER IN A BOWL
½ pound ground beef
4 tablespoons butter, divided
¾ cup shredded carrots
¾ cup diced celery
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
4 cups cubed, peeled potatoes
3 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
16 ounces Velveeta cheese
1½ cups milk
¾ teaspoon salt
¼-½ teaspoon pepper
¼ cup sour cream
In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook and crumble beef until no longer pink. Drain and set aside. In same saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over low heat. Saute onions, carrots, celery, basil and parsley until tender, about 10 minutes. Add potatoes, beef and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer covered until potatoes are tender, about 10-12 minutes.
In a small skillet, melt remaining butter. Add flour. Cook and stir until bubbly, about three to five minutes.
Add to soup when potatoes are tender, and bring to a boil. Cook and stir for two minutes. Reduce heat to low. Stir in cheese, milk, salt and pepper. Cook until cheese melts. Remove from heat, and stir in sour cream.
5 INGREDIENT SLOW COOKER CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP
4-5 frozen or fresh chicken breasts
1 packet taco seasoning
1 jar salsa
1 (32-ounce) container of chicken broth
1 can black beans
1 can Great Northern beans
Spray a Crock-Pot with cooking spray, so it will not stick and it will be easier to clean, or use a slow cooker liner. Place chicken in the bottom of the slow cooker. Sprinkle the taco seasoning on top of the chicken. Pour salsa on top of chicken and seasoning. Pour in the whole container of chicken broth. Drain beans and pour on top of everything. Set the slow cooker to six hours on high. Thirty minutes before you want to eat, remove chicken breasts and shred. Place back into slow cooker and let cook for 30 minutes.
• Contact Ruthie Robison at 581-7235 or email@example.com.