Variation I : Fast German Vegetable Soup
This soup is deemed "German" because a) I started making it in Germany and b) the Trinity is based on the German "Suppe-Grün" or "soup greens"
To begin, collect the Trinity: a few carrots, leeks, and celery. However, the celery I tend to use here is the root not the stalks. (The taste, in my opinion, is much stronger.) A full root, two large carrots and two leeks should be enough for 1 to 4 people.
Cut everything in to acceptable bite sizes (I tend to like things large, but that takes longer to cook.) Throw it all boiling water (i.e. boil water first). How much water depends on how much soup. I usually start off with just a little and add more as things progress.
Season (salt & pepper, or get more creative if you want). And wait just 10 minutes or so. The whole process then is less than 15. Once the water starts to take on a "veggie color" I assume it's all done.
- Take any bits and pieces from the vegetables you cut, or from any vegetables in general that are a little too old (e.g., cauliflower stems, onion peels, carrot greens). Throw them all in a separate pot with just enough boiling water to cover them.
Now, when the vegetables turn colorless, drain the water from them and pour it into the soup. You've effectively just created a vegetable broth. You can continue the process, pouring more water onto the old vegetables until you really get all the nutrients out of them. It's something like recycling all the little bits that you normally throw away.
- Throw in any type of vegetable (see below). The best are generally the really fibrous ones. Parsnips work fairly well. They are a lot like carrots, but sweeter, ... and different.
- If you add too much salt, add potatoes. This is how Variation II was developed. In general, though, potatoes will tend to absorb salt and balance out the soup.
Variation II : German Potato-Vegetable Soup
Start with Variation I. Once the vegetables are in and cooking, cut up potatoes and throw them in (The smaller the better, generally).
This was originally intended to absorb the extra salt I once accidentally added to a soup. Thing was, I added way too much salt. I had to keep adding potatoes and in the end, they all started getting mushy.
To salvage the pounds and pounds of vegetables and potatoes I had already thrown in, I just let it cook more. When things got truly soft, I mushed them all up, and made a mix between mashed potatoes and vegetable soup. It's good. The color leaves a little to be desired, brown with orange chunks but it's tasty.