Slow Cooker Salvation!

Kylie's List

My Little Pony's Agrarian Soup


This one was named by my husband; I had a ponytail in, and I was talking to him about agrarian society diets when I was making this, and so the name was born (he has a slight obsession with naming the foods I create, and loves to make them weird, so bare with me).  This recipe is great for quick lunches during the week, or over a weekend when the weather is cold or damp.  It involves zero cooking, just some peeling, chopping and stirring, and it's a great healthy meal.  For a full meal, just pour this soup over cooked whole wheat couscous, brown rice, or wild rice (it's wonderful!!!).  Slow cookers are beautiful!

Servings: approximately 12 (about 2 cups per serving)

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 4 hrs on High

Slow Cooker Size: 7 qt (you can reduce the ingredients/water to fit into a smaller one)

Ingredients (add to slow cooker in this order):
- 1 heaping TB chicken bouillon paste or 3 chicken bouillon cubes
- 5 cups chopped celery stalks
- 5 cups peeled/chopped carrots
- 27 oz. canned/boxed chopped tomatoes
- 2 cups chopped white or yellow onions
- 2 cans (15 oz. each) kidney beans, drained, and rinsed
- 1 can (15 oz.) cannellini beans, drained, and rinsed
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (more or less, depending on how spicy you want it)
- 1 TB + 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp fresh cracked pepper
- 6 cups water

Instructions:
Step 1) Add all ingredients to slow cooker in the order listed, place lid on top, plug-in, set to 'High' for 4 hours - that's it!


Tips:
- 5 cups of the carrots or celery are about two handfuls of fresh stalks/carrots each: grab two handfuls at the store, and that will be about 5 cups (2 handfuls of carrots, and 2 handfuls of celery)
- Remove the root ends of the celery and carrots, and toss in the compost heap, if you have one (don't put into the soup)
- For the chopped tomatoes, I use Pomi brand: in a box, no BPA in the lining, very good flavor
- 2 cups of onions is about 2 small onions
- In place of kidney beans, black beans work great, too
- Eden Organics has beans in the can without BPA in the lining
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper gives a very mild spicy flavor, but you can add more, if you want a lot of heat (great for cold season and clearing sinuses)
- You can crack your fresh pepper onto a napkin or paper towel first to get a good idea of how much you have (it's hard to measure when you are cracking over the soup)
- If your slow cooker does not have an automatic 'Warm' setting after the cooking time is done, don't leave it sitting on the counter with no heat, this is not good food safety: put soup in the refrigerator, and heat servings as needed.  Also, don't let it cook for over the 4 hours on 'High', or it will be overdone.
- You can have a chunkier soup by reducing the water, but I don't recommend it if you are planning on leaving the soup on the 'Warm' setting until it's all eaten: it can become overdone and on the dry side if left in the warmer for days.  Also, if you plan on pouring the soup over whole wheat couscous, brown rice, or wild rice, I would leave the water amount at 6 cups.

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