It's warm, it's cozy, it has dill pickles in it. Along with butter and cream. So no, it's not going to be at the top of your "10 Healthy Foods for 2014" list but it makes up for its fat free shortfall with loads of taste and comfort.
I personally like this soup for a few reasons, it's a bit different, kids like pickles and hence should like soup made with said food item, and the biggest reason, it's a trip to the cold room or pantry away. I hop on down the stairs, pick out some onions, carrots from their sandy nests (a blog post unto itself right there!), potatoes from the bin and a jar of pickles from the shelf.
Confession here, actually the onion came from the freezer. Someone (not naming names but there could be a finger pointed right at yours truly) put the onions too close to the cold air intake during the worst cold snap in 100 years. Frozen, like little croquet balls, hard, rock-esque, onions. But in soups and stews, still perfectly useable! I just pull one out, let it defrost, overlook the less than appetizing texture of a frozen onion and slice away.
Note: To all who have ever wondered if carrots keep well in sand-filled buckets...Yes!! Perfectly! I am so happy, overjoyed that no longer do I have to watch my garden carrots moulder away in the fridge, crossing my figners they last until Christmas time. We washed the carrots outside, put them on a thin layer of sand in a clean 5 gallon bucket and then continued layering damp sand and carrots until filled. Then putting on our heavy-duty muscles, hauled them down to the pantry, which is where they sit right now. The carrots are crisp, chilled, hardly hairy and still have that oh-so-sweet crunch which time warps me back to July and its far-off warmth. Sigh.....
But, back to soup! Here's the recipe I used, tweaked a bit from the Noble Pig.
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 1/2 cups dill pickles, chopped fine
1 garlic clove, minced
2 large potatoes, peeled and smaller dice
1 1/2 cups pickle juice
5 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/2 cup butter (where I am, unsalted butter is carried around by unicorns)
1 cup flour
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
salt and coarse pepper to taste
fresh or frozen dill
Put vegetables, bay leaf, butter and broth in a large part. Bring to a boil on medium heat (although I always use high heat as supper is a 50 yard dash to 6:00) until potatoes are tender. Add pickles.
Mix flour, sour cream and milk until it's a smooth paste. Slowly mix into cooking vegetables and broth via whisk. Simmer on low until thickened.
Add pickle juice, salt and pepper. Just before serving, add a swirl of whipping cream and the dill. Serve hot.