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Old-Fashioned Beef and Vegetable Soup

Old-Fashioned Beef and Vegetable Soup
Los Angeles Times

A restorative soup supper is just the ticket every now and then. A soothing alchemy develops in the soup pot. My preference is old-fashioned beef and vegetable soup, a thick and hearty combination that softens stress. It's also a do-ahead ... Read more

Total time: 3 hours 30 minutes | Serves 8
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 pounds beef short ribs, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 large stalks celery, diced
  • 1 large celery root, peeled and diced
  • 1 rutabaga, peeled and diced
  • 1 large baking potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice

Step 1Heat oil in large stewpot over medium high heat. Season ribs with salt and pepper to taste. When oil is hot, sear ribs in batches. Set aside.

Step 2Keep about 2 tablespoons fat in pot. Add onions and garlic. Stir until mixed. Cook, stirring often, until hot and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add celery, celery root, rutabaga, potato, bay leaf, thyme, broth, water and tomatoes with juice. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until meat is falling off bones, about 2 1/2 hours.

Step 3Use tongs to transfer ribs to plate. When cool enough to handle, remove meat from ribs, trim away fat and cartilage (there will be more waste than meat). Use hands to shred meat. Stir into soup. Cool, then refrigerate overnight or up to 3 days. Skim and discard solid fat. (Can be frozen up to 1 month.) Reheat over medium high heat, stirring often. Taste and adjust seasoning. Simmer, uncovered, to thicken as desired. Remove bay leaf. Serve hot in warm soup bowls.

Note: Be sure to make this soup at least a day ahead to let the fat congeal on the surface so it can be easily removed and discarded. Also, the flavor improves tremendously as it stands. It freezes well. To thicken the soup, simmer it, uncovered, until it's just as you like it. If it's too thick, simply add water.


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