I really think that all fall and winter I could live off homemade soup and fresh bread. Since we raise our own grass feed beef we have a freezer full of beef and soup bones, so I love to make my own stock. For beef stock I usually make pretty big batches so I can freeze some. I actually did 10 soup bones in 2 pots this last time. To make my stock I put my bones in a roasting pan with some organic carrots, celery, onions and garlic and roast for about an hour at about 400 degrees. Next I take my roasted bones and all those veggies and dump them into a stock pot then I add about 12 cups of water, some whole peppercorns, a bay leaf, a jar of our own canned diced tomatoes, about 5 diced potatoes and kosher salt to taste bring to a boil then lower heat and simmer for 5-6hrs, strain through cheesecloth, then let cool and remove the fat layer on the top. True stock will gel- it looks rather unappealing but it is perfect. I prefer to freeze in 2 cup portions before it gels, there is nothing like homemade stock for your soups and gravies. The same can be done with chicken bones as well for fresh chicken stock and it is extremely economical.
A recipe you must try is Zuppa Toscana, I had it for the first time at Olive Garden and it is amazing. So I looked up a recipe and found a great one HERE, the only changes I made were to use our own italian beef sausage that we make and we used Kale instead of spinach then top it off with some fresh parmesean and you have the most wonderful soup.
Next up is a super simple soup, I used some of my freshly made chicken stock and added some spices, organic, celery, carrots, onions, shredded chicken and some egg noodles then I added some Franks red hot and turned plain chicken noodle soup into buffalo chicken soup-yummo. I added fresh grated parmesean to the top which was good but some crumbly blue would have been perfect! I am sure I will be experimenting with lot's more soups this winter and what goes perfect with soup but Artisan bread. That my friends deserves it's own post so maybe tommorrow I will share the best bread book in the world- well at least in my humble opinion!