We are getting hit with a major snow storm. No matter how Nashville prepares for a snow storm, we are elated and deflated at the same time.
We don’t handle snow well, and everything shuts down, even at only 4 inches of snow.
We celebrate the novelty, at least for a day or two. After that, we complain. Before the snow falls, the news channels go crazy, schools are cancelled well in advance, and everyone rushes to the grocery store for fear of starving.
In preparing for this blizzard, I drove to the store last night. To my surprise, the bread shelves were completely empty.
I found out later they moved the bread to another aisle in a remodeling process. Now that’s quite a joke to play on us, and I almost fell for it and panicked even though I wasn’t buying bread.
This got me thinking. Every now and again, my mind wanders across the world. Not everyone has what we have. We panic if we don’t have twenty different types of bread to choose from at all hours. We’re used to fully stocked shelves of anything we want.
But I know there are countries where people don’t have these choices and supplies are often limited. One simple loaf of bread might be a miracle for a family. Fresh vegetables are too hard to get and yet we fill our trash cans and garbage disposals with food we’re tired of or forgot about. Maybe this is why I try to use everything and treat leftovers with respect.
I still have a natural instinct to make good use of everything food. I hate to throw away something as small as a carrot stick, and I never want to take for granted the freedom I have with food.
Stretching food to feed the whole family is how many soups got their start. A mother had to fill bellies with a few ingredients and boiling water became her friend. Many great recipes have come from wise kitchen management, but especially soups.
This is one of those soups that was made with left overs. Chicken bone broth, beef bone broth, left over pot roast and a couple of cans of this and that, a half box of macaroni, two kale leaves.
How I used leftovers to make this Italian Beef Macaroni Soup
Let’s start with the Pot Roast. Always make enough to take advantage of its suitability for an array of leftover roast beef recipes. I’ve made roast beef hash and pie, but never thought of making soup.
I just happened to have some homemade chicken bone broth and some homemade beef bone broth, enough to make one nice big pot of soup. I added in a can of San Marzano tomatoes, as they are sweet and will crush right in your hands. They flavor the broth and turn chicken and beef broth into simply meat broth. (See cooking tips for having broth on hand.)
I always start (just about everything) with carrots, celery and onion. I like to slowly saute these together just as if I’m making a bolognese. Then the broth and tomatoes are added, along with whatever else I feel has to be in my soup.
This kind of soup could go a lot of ways, but cannelini beans and lacinato kale (beans and greens) was my perfect choice, but you should feel free to improvise and taste along the way and make this soup your own.
I call it beef macaroni soup because these are the prominent ingredients. You’ll love the kale, along with a swish of olive oil and possibly some freshly grated parmigiano reggiano or pecorino.
This is peasant food, but fit for any king.
Cooking Tip: Save your broth. Everytime you have any kind of bones, roast them with some onion and carrot and throw them in your slow cooker or a big pot and simmer for hours. Cool, skim fat and then freeze. If you use boxed or canned broth when cooking, freeze what you don’t use, just for times like this.
Add Marzano tomatoes to broth, crushing the whole tomatoes with your hands. This boosts flavor. In fact, if you stopped right there, you could feed off this broth like a meal. It’s also a great way to use a chicken broth for a beef soup!
So tell me, do you eat leftovers? And, how do you spend your snow days? I like to get outside and take a walk IF the sun comes out. Otherwise it’s Netflix and making something for you.
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More Beefy Recipes
You can make a similar soup like this Paleo with this Vegetable Beef Soup.
More leftover roast beef recipes here.
Italian Pot Roast of Beef here.
Pot Roast of Beef in Red Wine here.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 carrots, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 celery sticks, diced (with leaves)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- fresh or dried herbs such as parsley, basil, thyme
- 1 can white cannelini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 to 2 cups left over roast beef, trimmed of fat
- 8 cups of meat broth
- 1 rind of a piece of parmigiano reggiano cheese (optional)
- 1 large can San Marzano Italian tomatoes
- 2- 3 leaves of lacinato kale (ribs removed) chopped or any kale, finely chopped
- Saute celery, onion, carrots until softened
- Add garlic. Cook just a few minutes.
- Add in beans,
- Add broth, can tomatoes.
- If you have a rind of parmigiano reggiano, add it to the broth for flavor. Discard later.
- Add in fresh herbs
- Simmer for 45-60 minutes
- Add kale until kale is softened
- Add left over roast beef during last 10 minutes of cooking.
- Cook macaroni separately 2 minutes under cooking time.
- Add macaroni to the soup and finish cooking in the soup. Do not cook the macaroni in the soup, as it will absorb too much of the broth.