My sister Linda and I got hooked on pureed healthy soups a few years ago and are always looking for new combinations. We’re not actually Irish even though my Viking ancestors probably did their share of visiting Ireland. Quite a few of our family have red hair to some degree, possibly a result of pillaging and plundering. I’m not sure this soup recipe is actually Irish either, besides being called St Patrick’s Soup.
I had cabbage and sliced mushrooms and wanted to make soup. I put the ingredients in a Google search and found a soup called St Patrick’s Soup with those ingredients. I think it was fate because everything in the recipe was in my pantry or fridge! Plus it was timely.
I have a love of cabbage due to my German side as well, so that was another push to make the soup. No matter what we call it, the soup was excellent! Frankly I’d call it Pureed Heaven due to that love of pureed soups I share with Linda. It would be good even if it wasn’t pureed, I suspect.
Of course I had to tweak the recipe. I’m not saying the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture’s recipe wasn’t good, I just saw a few changes I’d rather make. They just chopped everything and threw it together to cook in butter for awhile before adding the broth. I decided to slowly add the ingredients in an order that allow the different things to be equally sautéed. Onions take longer than mushrooms, for example.
I did substitute my baby bellas for the button mushrooms, so my soup was a bit more grey than a soup made with white button mushrooms would have been. And I thought two large onions was a whole lot of onion for the size of pot of soup I was making so I just used one. Everything else was pretty much the same.
I started with cutting the onion into fourths and slicing it. Since the soup is pureed I didn’t need to be all that particular with the chopping and dicing. I put the onion into a large skillet with the ¼ cup butter to sauté.
Next up was going to be cabbage, and I had about ¾ a head of regular green cabbage. Oh oh, I did say I didn’t make other changes and now I admit the recipe called for savoy cabbage. Since the goal of my soup was to use up the cabbage I had on hand already, I chopped it and called it done. I added it to my skillet and waited for it to wilt down, stirring it occasionally. It was wilted after about 4 minutes of cooking.
My mushrooms were already sliced and ready, and I stirred them into my skillet and let them sauté for about 3 more minutes. I stirred them occasionally to prevent the contents from getting too brown in places. I also stirred in the garlic powder, salt, pepper and rosemary.
I had fairly small potatoes so I peeled and diced 6 of them. I did a smaller dice since the other ingredients had already cooked quite awhile. The potatoes went into the skillet for a few minutes, then I put the entire contents of my skillet into a small soup pot.
I added the 7 cups of chicken broth and brought the pot to a boil, then turned it down to medium heat to cook for about 20 minutes. I partially covered the pot with a lid. When the potatoes were fork tender the pot was ready to puree.
I have an immersion blender so I used that to blend the soup until it was creamy and mostly smooth. You could use a blender and puree in batches as the recipe had suggested. My P.S. (Prefers Soup/hubby) suggested it stay just the way it was and that probably is another good option. I wanted it pureed this time but might try that next time.
I returned the soup to a very low setting on the stove and kept it warm while I made the sandwiches. It smelled so good! I’d taste tested it and ended up adding quite a bit more salt. My chicken broth is not salty but I always wait until the end to fully season foods with the broth just in case.
We thought the flavors of the soup were excellent. The rosemary adds a nice distinctive flavor that doesn’t get lost in the heavier flavor of cabbage. The addition of potatoes cut the flavor of cabbage quite a bit anyway, and the mushrooms came through very nice. I think using the more flavorful Bellas was a good choice over the white button mushrooms that can get easily lost.
We sipped our soup with our sandwiches and were happy with our dinner. I put the rest of the soup in my handy bottle system and froze them for lunches at a later date.
St Patrick’s Soup
1⁄4 cup (63 ml) butter
5 potatoes; peeled and diced
1 large onion; quartered and sliced
3 cups (750 ml) cabbage; roughly chopped
1 cup (250 ml) mushrooms; sliced (I used Bellas, white button would also work)
1 tsp (5 ml) dried marjoram
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
7 cups (1750 ml) chicken stock
1 cup (250 ml) fresh parsley chopped
1⁄3 cup (83 ml) crème fraîche or sour cream
Parsley sprigs or snipped chives
In large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and fry for 3 or 4 minutes on medium high. Add cabbage and fry 3 or 4 more minutes until it begins to wilt.
Add mushrooms, marjoram and garlic powder and cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add potatoes and cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in stock and bring to boil; reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 20 minutes or until potatoes and cabbage are tender.
Stir in parsley; simmer for 1 minute, uncovered.
Purée in batches or use an immersion blender and pour into clean saucepan. (Soup can be prepared to this point, cooled, covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day. Taste and adjust seasoning; reheat.)
Serve in warm soup bowls, garnishing each serving with dollop of crème fraîche and sprig of parsley.
Makes 8 servings.
Nutrients per serving per their website: Protein: 5.0 grams; Fat: 8.0 grams; Carbohydrates: 22.0 grams; Calories: 180
Adapted from Ontario Foodland site.