Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Tuesday: Wild Rice Soup in the Crock Pot

I used to be afraid to experiment in the kitchen. Mostly, because it irks me to have something come out terrible and feel that I wasted money and food on some silly culinary attempt. Of recent, however, I have been forced to be more creative in the kitchen. In order to be a good steward with my grocery budget I am working very hard to use what I have rather than run out to the grocery store on a whim for nachos....which I used to do...a lot.....

Now, believe me, we still eat nachos. However, for the most part now I know we are going to be eating them (on Thursday night actually!).  With meal planning I have learned to have a more organized kitchen. This means that I know there are twelve ziplock bags of summer squash still in my freezer waiting to be used, hopefully, before the next summers squash is ready for the picking!

Thus, this recipe. I created it today because when I made my meal plan on Monday morning I simply wrote that today was: Rice.
This meant that I needed to use some of the fifty pounds of bulk brown rice I have in my pantry along with other things that I have in my pantry.

In the crock pot this morning I put:
2 Cups of long grain wild rice 
2 cups of brown rice (that I had soaked in apple cider vinegar the night before) 
Several diced up stalks of celery 
Several diced up carrots 
Red onion 
Four cups of water  
Several cups of frozen zuchinni and squash from this past summmer

I let this cook for several hours and began adding more water as I saw fit. The rice, even such a small amount will soak up water like hot cakes so I advise that you do not leave your house without making sure you have enough that you will not burn anything in your crock pot if all the water is soaked up quicker than you think!

All day long this simmered away in my crock pot. At dinner time I stirred it, added a few more dashes of sea salt and put it into bowls. I also sprinkled some Braggs Nutritional Yeast on top of the soup, which gives a cheese flavor (but is non dairy). I served this with homemade rustic muffins thanks to my sourdough monster Hershel.
It was so delicious that I am eating it again a few hours later as I type this! The entire family enjoyed this simple meal.

Plus~ you could totally make this your own depending on what you like and have on hand. Some thoughts of things that might be tasty additions:

Ground Turkey or Beef 
Addition of another grain such as millet 
Other root vegetables such as turnip or potato 
Green beans 
Variety of different spices

Wonderful, nutritious, crock pot meal we are sure to use again! It was also very frugal and the recipe I gave above made a HUGE batch. We will eat this again this week, but I am going cook some ground turkey with it for variety and serve it with sourdough pitas. 

Many blessings,



mrsmac said...

What does the vingear do to the brown rice?

Ethiopianmomma said...

Hi Mrs. Mac,

The vinegar helps to reduce the phytates that are in the grain. These phytates help preserve the grain, but they are difficult for the body to digest. If you soak the grains for about 7 hours (or overnight) you will break down the phytates making the grain easier on your body. Your body will be able to handle the grain and benefit more from the wonderful nutrients brown rice and other grains have to offer. I usually soak my brown rice in apple cider vinegar. You can also use yogurt, whey, lemon juice, and kefir.
I did not use to soak my grains, I started about a year ago. I have noticed a difference in my body, and my husband who has some gluten issues has a much easier time digesting grains now. It is really easy if you are meal planning. The night before just pour your rice into a bowl on the counter. Add the water, a bit of apple cider vinegar, cover and let sit until you are ready to cook!

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