Over a Cup of Coffee: A soup for fall | CraigDailyPress.com

Over a Cup of Coffee: A soup for fall

Diane Prather

This morning, after I finished corral chores, I prepared the crock pot for tonight. I have been saving up green snap beans so that I could simmer them all day in the crock pot. The reason behind saving them up is that I planted the garden late this spring and the beans are just coming on.

I cut some red potatoes — that Beverly Counts brought me from their potato patch — into small chunks and added the green beans and some pieces of ham. I put in a few cut-up pieces of bacon, too. I seasoned everything, covered it with water and set the crock pot on low for 10 hours. That should be about the right amount of time to cook the beans until they are tender. Sometimes I use bacon by itself when cooking the beans.

All the while I worked in the kitchen I thought about our son Jody's phone call this past weekend. He, wife Cindy, Jessica and Jaycee live in Vernal, Utah, where they raise a nice garden. When we were there this summer the Kentucky Wonder Beans were climbing up stakes, and though I didn't stand right next to them, they must have been growing up taller than I am.

The plants weren't producing beans yet, but they are now. According to Jody they have been giving beans to their neighbors and cooking plenty of them in the crock pot, too, much like I did today.

Thinking about gardens made me search out recipes calling for vegetables. I found one of my favorite fall soup recipes. Though it calls for frozen vegetables, a person could easily use some "late" vegetables from the garden. Enjoy!

Beefy Fall Soup

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1 pound lean ground beef

4 cups water

4 teaspoons granulated beef bouillon

1 (14 ½-ounce) can Italian style stewed tomatoes

6 ounces smoked beef sausage, cut into ½-inch pieces

1 ½ cups frozen mixed vegetables (peas, beans, carrots, corn)

1 cup large elbow macaroni

Salt and pepper, to taste

Place ground beef in a medium skillet and season with salt and pepper. Crumble up with a spoon and cook until no longer pink. While beef is cooking, bring the water and beef bouillon to a boil in a Dutch oven or large saucepan. Add stewed tomatoes and sausage. Add vegetables and return to a boil. Add macaroni and return to a boil. Drain grease from the cooked ground beef and add to the soup. Simmer about 15 minutes or until macaroni is tender. Makes four servings.

• Note: You can also use bouillon cubes. If you use fresh vegetables, cook at least somewhat before adding them to the soup. I think this recipe originally came from the Nebraska Cattle Women.

If you have a recipe that you would like to share with readers, call me at 970-824-8809 or write to me at PO Box 415, Craig 81626.