My intention was to make vegan ‘chicken’ noodle soup with Beyond Meat chicken strips, cut into cubes. It was a total fail. The vegan meat substitute is not meant to swim in soup. It quickly reverts to a soggy mess. It retains it’s shape but becomes soft and tasteless. On the journey, however, I ended up with a delicious farro and vegetable soup that put any thoughts of golden chicken soup out of my head.
Here’s the recipe:
In a very large stockpot, because this makes enough soup to have for dinner tonight and to freeze for dinner next week…and the week after that:
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 yellow onion, medium diced
10 nice sized button mushrooms, stemmed and quartered
2 cloves of garlic
4 medium carrots, quartered lengthwise and chopped
4 celery ribs, sliced once lengthwise and chopped
1 small leak, sliced
2 leaves of chard, de-ribbed, rolled and sliced (chiffonade)
1/2 cup of nettle leaves – some whole and some chopped
1 quart vegetable broth plus 8 cups water: You can make your own but I used ‘Imagine’ Organic Vegetable Broth. It’s thick, nicely seasoned and I love the golden color.
1 cup rinsed farro
In a large stock pot, heat the oil. Once hot, add the onions and mushrooms. When the onions are translucent add the garlic, being careful to not let it burn. A minute or two later add the prepared vegetables and let them cook together for ten minutes on low heat, stirring frequently.
Add the vegetable broth plus water. Rinse the farro and stir into the soup. Allow everything to simmer on low until the farro is soft. Season to taste with kosher salt, crushed black pepper and thyme.
Serve with a side salad of soft buttery lettuce and tomatoes.