When a North wind is blowing, and the temperature feels like it is dropping...that says "cold front" to me! (not often down here - but it does happen!) Cold front means soup - not that the teen likes soup...but I'm ever hopeful he will expand his horizons.
I've made this recipe several times - it is a quick meal, warm and filling. I found it eons ago in a listing of winners in some sort of recipe contest...the winner was Linda Morton, from Katy, Texas (down near Houston - and apparently she has won several contests). I clipped this from the Austin American-Statesman way back when...and Ms. Morton won first place in the 30-minute main dishes category for whatever contest this was! Wayyyy before the days of Rachael Ray and her 30 Minute Meals!
Anyway, it is a tasty soup and it's worth sharing...always good to have a 30 minute meal recipe on hand.
COWBOY STEAK 'N' VEGGIE SOUP
1 pound boneless beef sirloin steak (1 inch thick)
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon oil
28 -32 oz canned beef broth
16 ounce jar Thick n Chunky Salsa or Picante Sauce (she used Old El Paso brand - I generally use Pace brand)
1 pound package frozen green beans, potatoes, onion, and red peppers (she used Green Giant)
1 can Great Northern beans, drained, rinsed
1 cup torn fresh spinach
Fresh basil, parsley, or cilantro sprigs for garnish if desired (cilantro works well if you like it)
Cut beef into 1/4 inch thick strips and then cut each strip into 1 inch lengths. Must be this size for it to get cooked in the allotted time frame! In medium bowl, combine beef, basil, salt, pepper, garlic and oil - toss to coat.
Heat Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium high heat until hot. Add beef mixture, cook and stir 4 to 5 minutes or until browned.
Stir in broth, salsa, and frozen vegetables. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low, simmer 10 minutes.
Stir in beans. Cook 4 to 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Stir in spinach.
Garnish each serving of soup with fresh herbs if desired.
Now, I've mentioned before that I'm not a fan of frozen green beans. They squeak on my teeth...and I can't stand it. The first time I made this, I made it using the frozen vegetables...but the other times I used a can of green beans, drained, I peeled and small-cubed a large russet potato, and I keep frozen diced onion as a freezer staple (whenever I use half an onion, I chop and freeze the rest, therefore always having some on hand). I skipped the red pepper...not a big fan. This did not significantly increase the time and, in my opinion, ended up with a better soup - again, personal tastes can always be accommodated!
Try it either way...you might like frozen green beans! It's a quick and tasty soup - however you end up fixin' it!
Bon Appetit, Y'all!!!