Bachelor Soup

“Bachelor Soup” not because I’m a bachelor, or even that I made it when I was a bachelor—I didn’t even start making this until I was married. Rather, Bachelor Soup because my husband doesn’t like soup, so I only make this when he’s away.

This is less a recipe than a rough technique that I generally follow.

  • Sweat an onion (I usually use a red or sweet yellow one) until it’s soft and cooked down and most of the moisture is driven off. If you want to give it a bit of color, go for it
  • Add a healthy heap of chopped garlic and cook for about a minute
  • Add in a dollop of grated ginger, keep cooking
  • Add any other aromatic bits here. Sometimes I fry in a bit of sundried tomato paste, sometimes not
  • Add one pound of ground chicken or turkey (I occasionally make this with ground beef, but it’s usually poultry). Sometimes when I’m making a quick version of this, I use a can of cooked chunk chicken. Cook this completely. Anything you don’t want in your soup drain out, but I rarely do this
  • Add 3 or so chopped carrots, and 3 or so chopped celery stalks. At the very least, add in the stalks and leaves at the heart of the celery
  • Add a pound of shredded cabbage. I usually use a bag of the pre-shredded stuff, but doing it the old school way with a head of green cabbage is fine
  • Add a big heap of freshly-chopped dill
  • Cover with chicken stock
  • Throw in a parmesean rind or two
  • Salt, pepper, some chives if you have some sitting in the fridge. Aromatics are your friends here
  • Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, and just let it soup up until everything is cooked
  • I usually make sure I have enough stock in the soup to throw in a handful of some sort of pasta: ditalini, tubetti, or this random brand I find locally called Bechtle which bills itself as “German soup noodles” (short, fine egg noodles). Bring to low boil, cook until pasta is done
  • Throw in a handful of chopped cilantro, and the zest and juice of a lemon

I usually have with croutons, and I find the cooked parmesean rind to be a treat. As with most soups, keeps a few days and tastes better the next day.

This soup is extremely flexible, add or drop anything you want. It’s basically “how many aromatics can I shove into some chicken broth with some veggies coming along for the ride?”