Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What's for Dinner, Hearty Yummy Veggie Soup

Confession time here. Last year I had a very busy, demanding job and towards the end of the year I multiplied that chaos by two. Working crazy hours, having a newborn that didn't sleep through the night, and combined with the fact I worked from home and virtually didn't move at all, I am starting this year weighing more than just before I delivered Bailey. That's just plain unhealthy, unflattering, and embarrassing.

So, starting the new year I made a resolution, along with 50 gazillion other people, to lose weight. My goal is a little more ambitious than many, but it needs to be. This time next year I plan to be 100 lbs lighter than I am now (geesh, I can't belive I'm saying that). My biggest part of the success will be to make sure I workout 30 minutes a day, twice a day, five times a week. But certainly eating healthy is part of it too.

So now I'm on this new eating healthy kick but I was hungry and it is really super cold outside. I wanted something comforting and warm, filling, but sticking to the low cal and low fat regimen. Then I remembered that Cabbage Soup diet of days gone by. Did you ever try that one? The one where on Day 1 the soup was bland but tolerable and you didn't mind eating just eight bananas in a day because you were going to be 10 pounds lighter by the end of the week. But by Day 7, just the sight of the soup in the fridge was enough to make you gag and you instead found yourself scarfing down a six month old bag of forgotten Halloween candy and an entire bag of chips. Yeah, that's healthy.

But it got me thinking. The veggies are low cal and healthy and the soup wasn't entirely bad. What if I made a soup that's tastier than the original and I didn't eat it 12 times in a day? Then it becomes a yummy, healthy meal rather than a diet. That was all I needed and I was off.

So, here is my version of the old Cabbage Soup recipe. It's got a nice little kick to it, but not so much that Reagan can't eat it. It really is quite tasty, healthy, and hit the spot on a cold Winter's night. You certainly don't need to be dieting to enjoy this soup!

Hearty Yummy Veggie Soup
Prep time: 20-30 minutes
Cook time: about an hour

1/2 head of cabbage, shredded
1 bag frozen crinkle cut or sliced carrots
1/2 bunch of celery, diced
1 large onion, diced
2 cans diced tomatoes (I used ones flavored with jalapenos and garlic and onion)
1 container V8 Hot-Spicy (you really want this over the regular stuff!)
1 can beef broth
1 packet onion soup mix
2 Tbls minced garlic
Other spices to taste- I used anywhere from 1-3 tsp of each: cumin, seasoning salt, Mrs. Dash garlic and herb blend, Worcestershire, pepper (Really season this stuff here!). If you want it even spicier, try adding Tabasco, diced jalapenos, or cayenne pepper.

Add all ingredients in a large stock pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer until veggies are tender, around 45 minutes to one hour. Remember the veggies will cook down, so don't panic if there doesn't seem to be enough liquid. If you do need to add more liquid, add more broth and cut back on the salt you add.

This makes a lot of soup. Try freezing some of it for another day!


Michelle said...

Yum! I love my some soup, and this one sounds good, although I could never dream of doing the cabbage soup thing you describe. If you are trying to lose weight, PLEASE be careful to not eat too little. If you go under ~1200 calories a day, your body starts starving itself and you totally screw yourself up. (More calories if you're working out more) Good luck!

Joanna said...

Good luck with your goals. I agree, the cold weather makes it harder to stick with the low cal foods. Soup is a yummy way of doing that.

Rebecca said...

I am on the lose weight kick too. I have tabbed tons of recipes in my Cooking Light Recipe book.

Good luck!

Kelly Deneen said...

Yum! That does sound good! Best of luck with everything!! I am trying to eat healthier and work out often too. So I must ask, how/when do you plan to work out twice a day? I am having a hard time getting once a day in! ha!

Zoey's Mommy said...

Good luck with the losing weight! I know it can be so hard. No matter what though, you're still a hot mama to me!!

Sheri said...

Ugh - I cannot STAND soup! But, I'm with you on the diet - I also want to lose 100lbs, and would love to do it in a year, but have set a goal of 2. I'm going to the gym 5 days a week, doing 45 min of all out cardio on the elliptical, and then varying strength training exercises. I started a new blog at http://pounds-away.blogspot.com if you'd like to join in and be an owner! Company on this trip would be most welcome!