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15 Minute Soup

by Meghann on January 3, 2012

You know you’re in Florida when… the local coffee shop continues to run the AC when it’s 40 degrees outside. Brrr… Floridians LOVE their AC.

I was actually a little confused when I kept hearing the AC kick on. The coffee shop is located in an old-converted house that is very drafty and not very well insulated. With the AC off it would be chilly on it’s own, but with it on, it was freezing. I had a couple of refills of hot water and stayed bundled up in my sweater and jacket while I worked during the morning.

When lunchtime rolled around I was really craving a bowl of hot soup to help warm me up. I debated staying at the coffee shop and ordering one there, but the idea for a quick and easy soup with items I already had on hand back home changed my mind.

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My mind was set on a sweet potato soup, but didn’t want to take 45 minutes to make it. So I improvised.

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To help speed up the process I peeled and cubed a large sweet potato, then I microwaved it for 5 minutes.

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After 5 minutes the cubes were soft and easy to poke with a fork. This meant there was no need to wait for them to boil on the stove and shaved an easy 30 minutes from the soup’s total cook time. Genius.

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While the sweet potatoes had a quick zap in the microwave, I started sauteing some onion, mushrooms, and fresh garlic in the pot.

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And seasoned them with oregano, chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.

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When the sweet potatoes were done, I added them to the pot.

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Then one can of black beans (drained and washed) and a can of vegetable broth (refilled with water and added again for a full 4 cups of liquid).

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I let everything come to a low boil, then removed the soup from the heat and began to blend.

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I also added some kale at the end because I only had a little of the kale left and this seemed to be the perfect fit.

The whole process took just about 15 minutes from start to finish. It was a speedy homemade sweet potato soup black bean soup that was quick, delicious, and easy to prep.

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I garnished my serving with plain greek yogurt and a quarter of an avocado.

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With a piece of toast on the side (to soak up all the good stuff at the end)

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The soup was a little thin for my taste (next time I would add less liquid), but I really like how quick and easy it was to make. Softening the sweet potato before hand in the microwave saved a lot of time, as did using canned black beans. I left the remainder of the soup on the stove on a medium-low to let to flavors intensify a little more before I package the rest up as left overs. :)

Do you have any quick-and-easy soup tricks for cold days?

I just got some good news from the vet! Maddie is done with her teeth cleaning and is awake and doing fine. They didn’t have to pull any teeth and her chompers are as pearly white as ever. My sister recommended some doggie toothbrushes that she uses on her dogs to keep up with their teeth, so I’m thinking about investing in a couple for Maddie with the hope we can avoid this as much as possible in the future.

He also believes that Maddie licking at her feet may be a seasonal allergy since she only started doing it over the last couple of months. He’s recommending some medicine to relieve the itchiness and prevent any infections, but this scares the crap out of me after what I went through with Abbie couple of years back.

Abbie had similar itchy skin problems (only she would pull all the fur off of her right butt cheek in her itchy fits) and was prescribed a similar medication to ease the itchiness. She ended up having an allergic reaction to the medicine and stopped breathing suddenly in the middle of the night before quietly passing away. It wasn’t until the vet was talking to me about the medicine he wanted to give Maddie that all of those old memories came flooding back and I actually started to tear up on the phone.

I’m going to talk to the vet when I pick Maddie up later this afternoon about my concerns with the medicine and see what happens from there. I don’t want Maddie to be in pain and feel the need to keep picking at her feet, but I’m not sure I can give her a similar medicine that may have taken the life of my first dog. :(

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