Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Gluten Free Tomato Zucchini Soup

Tomato Zucchini Soup

Soups are a great way to save money on any diet plan, including the gluten free diet. Before going gluten free, I occasionally made soup from a can. Boy, I had no idea what I was missing! After diagnosis, canned soups became a thing of the past; I had to learn to cook from scratch. Soup was the very first gluten free meal I made and ate! It was a simple microwave potato soup. Nowadays, with a little more experience, I’ve branched out into all different types of soup. They are a mainstay for my Czech husband and me.

Czechs typically begin lunch and dinner with soup, rarely eating it as the main course. After moving to the Czech Republic, I had to learn how to cook different types of soup. Eating the same kind day after day gets tiring very fast. As a result, I’ve done many internet searches for simple soup recipes over the years. Tonight, I made one of our favorites—Tomato and Zucchini Soup.
This soup is packed with nutrients and flavor, plus it’s easy to add your own variations to the base recipe. Tonight, I fixed soup and a main dish salad. The salad was made with lettuce, tomatoes, grated carrots, Italian hard cheese, and leftover schnitzel chicken from last night’s supper. We also had some crusty bread with our meal.

Our entire supper was created using ingredients I already had in the fridge. This is a great way to save money—cooking with what you already have on hand. You can save a lot of money by using up leftovers and other ingredients before they expire or spoil.

Now on to the recipe! This recipe is husband tested and approved!

Tomato and Zucchini Soup

1 zucchini, quartered and sliced
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil or butter
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic (or more to your preference), minced
2 tablespoons rice flour (or other gluten free flour)
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth (or 4 cups of water and 2 chicken or vegetable bullion cubes)
3 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried basil
5 grinds of Italian grinder (*see note below)
Salt and pepper to taste

1). In a small mixing bowl or colander, lay zucchini slices and sprinkle with salt. Let stand about 30 minutes.

2). In a large stock pot, heat vegetable oil or butter over medium high heat. Sautee onion and garlic until onion is translucent (about 10 minutes).

3). Stir in rice flour, then add about ½ cup of chicken broth and stir until rice flour has been dissolved. Add remaining chicken broth, spices, salt, pepper and tomato; simmer for 10 minutes and then add zucchini and simmer for another 10 minutes.

4). Serve and enjoy!

Variations:  This evening I included a little bit of rice in the soup, to make it more filling. You could also add chicken or other meat, or include lentils in your soup.

Makes 6 servings

Serving suggestions: you can use this soup as a starter, or serve soup and salad, together with some crusty bread. This soup’s also good on its own!

*Note: I use McCormick Italian Herb Seasoning Grinder. It appears to be gluten free. Please be sure to check the label or check McCormick's website to ensure this product is still gluten free, as recipes do change from time-to-time.

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