Monday, January 30, 2012

Hearty Vegetable Soup & Felted River Rocks

Today I decided to make a hearty vegetable soup for dinner, I hadn't purchased a Rutabaga or Turnip in so long that I thought it would be fun to buy a couple for the soup.  This soup is packed with veggies, just the thing to keep everyone healthy as we inch closer to spring.

Here are the ingredients:

Hearty Vegetable Soup

1 bunch celery chopped
1 large or 2 medium onions peeled and chopped
1 package mushrooms coarsely chopped
1-2 turnips chopped
1 rutabaga peeled and chopped
1 bag frozen classic mixed vegetable
1/2 bag frozen crinkle cut carrots
1- 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 can beans drained and rinsed (I chose Great Northern, just about any would work though)
64 oz. of Vegetable or Beef Broth
Water as needed to cover veggies
Salt, Pepper, Dried Italian Seasonings, Dried Parsley - season to taste
Dash or two of Tabasco if you want a little spice - to taste- a little goes a long way

Put all ingredients in a soup pot, bring to a medium boil, then turn down to simmer,  simmer for a couple of hours, check how the veggies are coming along, check seasoning.  I like to add seasonings at the beginning middle and end of cooking a soup, checking the flavor of the broth to adjust the seasoning just how we like it.  The soup is done when the veggies are all cooked through and tender.

This soup is loaded with veggies!

Serve with sourdough bread, you could also make up some tiny soup noodles like orzo or stelline or even mini alphabet noodles.  I prepare my noodles separately and just scoop in a serving to each soup bowl, that way the pasta doesn't get soggy, and you can control the amount that you put in each bowl.  I also like to set out Parmesan cheese to sprinkle on the top of the soup.

I also did a fun craft today that I have been wanting to do for quite some time- I wet felted some river rocks.  I used Valentine colors so they would be a nice decoration to set out for Valentines Day.

First I got out some river rocks, I bought a big bag from the garden department last summer to use for crafting.

I used thin layers of wool and wrapped around the rock in various directions, like this.

Then I filled a bowl with hot soapy water, dunked the wool wrapped rock in the sudsy water and worked the felt by dunking it in the water and squeezing the water out, until it started to hold its shape, then I used a terry cloth dish rag to rub the wool to help it felt.  When the water cooled, I dumped it out and filled it with more hot water and dish soap.  The instructions I read said to use water as hot as you can stand for quicker felting, of course with children, the process would be slower in not as hot of water. Here is the link with instructions I found for felting rocks.

After I felt the rocks where to the shape I wanted, and felted enough, I rinsed them out well under running water, and set them out to dry.  Tomorrow I will trim away some of the fuzzy bits, I may also try wet felting some of them more, one of the rocks had exposed rock, that I couldn't get worked back into place.  I do like the swirls of valentine colors.

Here they are, not quite dry yet, but I wanted to see what they would look like with some of my driftwood.

Overall I enjoyed this project, my hands did smell of wet sheep while I was working on these rocks, but that's okay.  The hot soapy water was nice on my hands, and it is a fairly relaxing craft.  Next time I would probably make one or two at a time, because I did start to lose patience after the first two.  I do prefer the needle felting process more, as the work is more controlled and you can get the colors just where you want them, but for felting over a solid object, wet felting is the only way to go.  Surely I will be pulling out my green shades of wool for St. Pat's and making some more wet felted rocks.


  1. Thank you for the post. I was curious about the rocks, and now I understand what you were talking about. I'm on a gift card box making trip. Started two days ago and I've done 8 boxes. I think kids will enjoy the craft, (and learn how to measure, as well).

  2. I think it must be getting close to spring, April, because every time I see pictures of vegetables my mouth starts to water. And your soup sure is jam-packed with nice vegetables! Got to make this soup up. Thanks for the recipe! Love your Valentine's Day count-down clock! Felting looks like such a fun craft. Been looking for something new to do. Knitting is getting to be a bit of a bore!

  3. Rich~ Your gift card boxes project sounds really interesting. What a fun way to learn measuring skills. I would love to see how they turn out. :)

    Jane~ I know what you mean about spring getting closer, I am getting excited about getting out to my garden again. Hope the groundhog doesn't see his shadow! Felting is very fun, I get all of my supplies at the starter set for needle felting is pretty reasonable. I just taught myself by watching youtube videos.

  4. You soup looks delicious, April! And I love your rocks. I have tried felting a few small rocks, but wasn't really sure what I was doing. I may try it again after seeing yours.


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