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Soups for every occasion

Hearty soups are perfect for warming your family when winter’s chill hits

Cool fall days and cold winter nights demand a hot meal on the table, and your family will not be disappointed with the sight of a stockpot or slow cooker full of savory soup, a loaf of homemade bread, a simple side salad, and a freshly baked apple pie for dessert. You’ll be the talk of the town-well, at least your home.

Whatever type of soup hits the spot for your family, our recipe archives have the perfect recipe.

Stay warm, and have fun in the kitchen during the cold months ahead.

Portuguese kale soup

1 bunch kale

1/2 head green cabbage

2 cans (15 1/4 ounces each) dark red kidney beans (cannellini or navy beans can be substituted).

1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound linguica sausage, sliced 1/4 inch thick. Turkey kielbasa or a mild Italian sausage can be substituted.

1 medium onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

6 to 8 cups chicken stock (reduced-sodium chicken broth can be substituted).

1 pound red potatoes, diced

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes

2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes

3 bay leaves

1/8 teaspoon Hungarian paprika

Coarse salt

Fresh ground black pepper

Wash kale under running water. Strip from tough stem, then coarsely chop and set aside.

In food processor, using medium shredder blade, shred cabbage.

Drain and rinse beans.

In large stockpot, heat olive oil; add sausage, onion, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is transparent.

Add remaining ingredients, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Adjust chicken stock as needed for desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste, remove bay leaf, and serve hot with a coarse bread.

Homemade potato soup

6 potatoes, pared and cut into bite-size pieces

2 onions, chopped

1 carrot, pared and sliced

1 stalk celery, sliced

5 chicken bouillon cubes

1 tablespoon parsley flakes

4 cups water

1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt

Pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons butter

3 to 4 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled, optional

1 can (13 ounces) evaporated milk

Chopped chives

In slow cooker, place potatoes, onions, carrot, celery, bouillon cubes, parsley, water, salt, pepper, butter, and bacon. Cover and cook on low for 12 hours, or on high for 3 to 4 hours.

Stir in evaporated milk during the last hour. If desired, mash soup with potato masher before serving. Top with chopped chives.

Quick chili

Here’s a chili recipe perfect for cold, crisp nights. Yields 8 to 10 servings.

5 tablespoons lard

2 large onions, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 pounds ground beef

1 pound ground pork

3 tablespoons chili powder

3 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 quarts tomatoes, run through a sieve, or 1 quart tomato juice

6 ounces tomato paste

2 cups beef broth

6 cups cooked pinto beans

In large skillet, heat lard over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, beef, and pork; saute until meat is browned and onion is translucent, about 15 minutes. Drain grease.

Transfer to large stockpot. Add chili powder, salt, pepper, tomatoes, and tomato paste, then stir in beef broth. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 1 hour.

Add beans and simmer for 1 hour longer, stirring frequently. Add more water as needed.

Beef and barley soup

Beef and Barley Soup is a hearty meal that also happens to be healthy. Packed with unique textures and flavors, this soup from Diane Hawkes is great for using leftover steak. It’s simple, warming, and just plain delicious. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

1 pound steak, cubed

1/2 teaspoon thyme

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 cloves garlic

2 bay leaves

1 pound carrots, sliced

1 can (16 ounces) crushed tomatoes

1 to 11/2cups barley

Place steak in stockpot and cover with water. Simmer until meat is tender. Do not drain; liquid will serve as beef stock.

Add thyme, pepper, garlic, bay leaves, and carrots to stockpot. Simmer for 1 hour, or until carrots are tender.

Stir in tomatoes and barley, and simmer for 1 additional hour, or until barley is tender. Add additional water as needed while soup is simmering.