Beef and Veggie Soup

No sign of spring yet, it must be time to cook soup.

Vegetable Beef Soup

1 lb of extra lean ground beef

4 cups beef broth + 5 cups water

oil or butter for sauteing vegetables

Vegetables:

1 large onion, diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

3 ribs of celery, thinly sliced

3 carrots, diced or grated

5 cups of chopped or shredded cabbage

Seasonings:

2  bay leaves

scant 1/4 tsp cloves or allspice

salt and pepper

Optional additions:

1/3 cup tomato paste

1 1/2 cups cooked rice or pasta

Prep veggies, peeling, chopping, shredding as necessary.  Meanwhile, in a large pot, combine beef broth, water and bay leaves and begin to warm over low  heat.  In a large frying pan over medium heat, add oil or butter and saute each of the vegetables in turn, sprinkling with a pinch of salt and a bit of pepper,  until softened, being careful not to brown them. The garlic may be added in with the onion.   As each vegetable is done, add it to the simmering broth.  Brown the ground beef with 1/2 tsp salt, pepper to taste, and cloves.  Drain well and add to broth.  Continue to simmer for another 10-15 minutes,  until  vegetables are desired tenderness.  Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.  If desired, stir in tomato paste and rice.  Discard bay leaves before serving.  Makes about 8 servings.

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