9.19.2013

Vegetable Medley Recipe

I've written about this recipe before, but after three people ask me about it this week, I decided it was time for a new, more thorough post. Vegetable Medley was one of my Grandma Malouf's trademark dishes. Steve and I have made and eaten lots and lots of Vegetable Medley over the years. Sometimes we make way too much, and then we have to take a break until we get excited about it again. But it's hard to beat a warm bowl of Vegetable Medley served with a grilled cheese sandwich in the middle of winter. And because Steve and I frequently took Vegetable Medley to eat with my Grandma Milligan for lunch, it reminds me of both of my grandmothers.

Here is the official recipe from my Grandma Malouf's book:


See, there aren't very many quantities listed, and the whole idea is that you can use whatever you have. That being said, we have perfected the recipe, based on my family's preferences.

Vegetable Medley

2 small onions, chopped
2-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
handful of basil, chopped
10-12 large tomatoes, through Norpro Sauce Master
corn from 1 cob
1 zucchini (cucumber-sized), sliced about a centimeter thick
1 yellow squash (cucumber-sized), sliced about a centimeter thick
lots and lots of carrots
lots of salt

Simmer everything as long as possible, except for the zucchini and squash. You don't want them to get overcooked, so add them in right at the end. I wouldn't recommend using zucchini and squash that are larger than a cucumber (or a cob of corn). Save those for something else.

My grandma always included lovage, and there is a giant lovage plant growing in the herb garden at the Oasis Community Garden, but I don't especially like lovage. And I already expressed my feelings about eggplant the last time I wrote about this recipe. We do like making the soup with green beans, but not as much as corn. Just don't use potatoes because it changes the consistency/texture of the soup.

I usually double the quantities listed above. But once, my friend, Amanda, came over to make it with me and we quadrupled it. . . and then, subsequently, burned it. So now I stick to smaller volumes to prevent against large catastrophes.

Here is a picture of the ingredients I used for my last batch (doubled):


Wouldn't that have been cool if I would have had garden-fresh carrots for my picture? Oh well.

The Norpro Sauce Master can be seen in action here. My kids love to use it. Looking at that post about our canning explosion is crazy. . . we were just talking about it the other night. (Steve was saying how thankful he is that he didn't lose his eyesight during that ordeal.)

The idea behind the sauce master is that it separates the skins and seeds from the sauce. But I actually like the skins just fine. So we put the tomatoes through the sauce master, where it separates the skins and seeds, and then we throw it all into the pot together. My kids don't like chunks of tomatoes, so the purpose behind using the sauce master is to get the tomatoes at a kid-friendly consistency.

One batch of the recipe above will yield approximately 5 pints of Vegetable Medley. But don't bother canning this soup because it will end up mushy and not very fresh-tasting. Instead, preserve Vegetable Medley for the winter months by freezing it.

Use a ladle and a canning funnel to put the soup into quart-sized Ziploc bags. (If you don't have a canning funnel. . . buy one! It's one of those inexpensive tools that will make your life easier.)

Fill the Ziploc bags with about 2.5 cups of soup, close the top, and lay flat for freezing:


Pull your frozen soup out of the freezer in the morning and defrost in the fridge. Don't use a microwave to heat this soup up; the zucchini and squash will end up chewy.

I think I covered everything. But feel free to keep the questions about Vegetable Medley coming, and I will continue to update this post!

1 comment:

Carly A said...

We made this for dinner tonight and it was so delicious! Thanks for sharing! what a great way to use up your garden!