BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -
Prep Time: 3 hours
Yields: 24 servings
Comment: Vegetables are canned or jarred during the spring months to ensure a good supply throughout winter. Often, when the weather is cold, Cajuns cook a huge pot of vegetable soup using canned provisions and whatever they were able to shoot that week. Such a large quantity of soup is made so that some can be frozen for later use. Any of your favorite vegetables such as turnips, sweet potatoes, or white beans may be added to the soup. You may also wish to add duck breast or any other game meat as well.
3 pounds beef chuck roast or venison, cubed
1 cup andouille sausage, sliced
½ cup bacon fat or shortening
2 cups coarsely chopped onions
2 cups coarsely chopped celery
1 cup coarsely chopped green bell peppers
¼ cup minced garlic
4 quarts beef stock
1 (12–15 ounce) can diced tomatoes, with liquid
2 (12–15 ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 cup sliced carrots
1 (12–15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, with liquid
1 (12–15 ounce) can lima beans, with liquid
1 (12–15 ounce) can black-eyed peas, with liquid
1 (12–15 ounce) can red kidney beans, with liquid
2 cups diced cabbage
2 cups cubed red potatoes, skin-on
1 (8-ounce) package vermicelli
salt and cracked black pepper to taste
NOTE: Do not drain canned vegetables.
In a 2-gallon stockpot, melt bacon fat over medium-high heat. Add meat and cook 10–12 minutes or until golden brown on all sides.
Add onions, celery, bell peppers, and garlic. Sauté 3–5 minutes or until vegetables are wilted.
Pour in beef stock, tomatoes with liquid, and tomato sauce. Bring to a rolling boil, reduce to simmer, and cook 2 hours or until meat is tender.
Add more beef stock or water during cooking process to retain a soup-like consistency.
Blend in carrots, corn, lima beans, black-eyed peas, red beans, cabbage, and all liquid from cans. Cook 12–15 minutes or until carrots are tender.
Add potatoes and vermicelli and cook 12–15 minutes or until potatoes and pasta are tender.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.