Saturday, January 7, 2012

Stone Soup

a.k.a. Simple Vegetable Soup

Unlike authentic Stone Soup that's made in the old folk story in which a hungry traveller persuades villagers to share vegetables with him as he stews a stone in a kettle of water, my recipe does not call for an actual stone. Just water, plenty of vegetables, some herbs, and salt & pepper. Feel free, however, to add a well scrubbed stone from your yard to the simmering brew in order to make the soup more authentic. You might just get your kids to eat this soup if it was cooked with a real stone! :)

Stone Soup
Vegan and Gluten Free
Low fat, low calorie and very nutritious
Serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 carrots, sliced into rounds
1 rutabaga, chopped*
1 potato, chopped*
1 tomato, chopped
1 small bunch collard greens
dried basil, oregano and thyme
salt & pepper

*I like to chop the rutabaga and potato into a similar shape and size of the sliced carrot. The vegetables cook more evenly that way and it makes for a nicer presentation.
  1. In a large stockpot, heat olive oil over medium high until hot.
  2. Add onion, celery and carrots and saute until the onion begins to get translucent.
  3. Season with salt and pepper and then add 6-8 cups of water.
  4. Add about 1/2 teaspoon each of dried basil, oregano and thyme.
  5. Add the rutabaga, potato and tomato.
  6. Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
  7. Cook the soup for 30-45 minutes or until the vegetables are almost fork tender. I usually test a piece of the rutabaga since it tends to need the longest cooking time.
  8. Add coarsely chopped collard greens and cook for another 15 minutes or until collard greens are cooked and tender and vegetables are fully fork tender.  **see below for optional method of cooking greens**
  9. Taste for seasoning and add additional salt & pepper, if desired.
  10. Serve hot.
**For an authentic one pot Stone Soup, add coarsely chopped collard greens or other greens to the soup as instructed above. I actually prefer to cook my greens separately and then add them to individual servings that I've ladled into bowls. I think sauteed greens simply taste better than boiled greens, so it's really up to you which method you choose to follow.

To saute the greens separately:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion [red if you have one]
1 small bunch of collard greens
salt & pepper
  1. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium high heat until hot. 
  2. Add 1/2 onion, sliced vertically. I like to use red onion here if I have one. 
  3. Saute onion for a minute or two, then add the collard greens, coarsely chopped. Saute for several minutes until greens are bright green and slightly wilted. Season with salt & pepper. 
  4. Set aside until soup is finished, then divide the sauteed greens evenly among individual servings of soup.
I sometimes add a freshly grated Parmesan cheese to the soup upon serving for additional flavor. Note that the soup is no longer vegan with the added cheese, although it is still vegetarian and gluten free.

Enjoy! :)

Weekend Cooking, a weekly blog event hosted by Beth Fish Reads. Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food related post to share--a food related book review (fiction or nonfiction), cookbook review, movie review, a recipe, random thoughts, gadgets, food quotations, photographs, etc. Please visit Beth's blog for more information and join the fun!


  1. The perfect winter soup. I bought broccoli rabe this week instead of greens because the greens didn't look all that great in the store today. I like the idea of making the greens separately.

  2. That looks really, really yummy, and I don't like vegetables particularly!

    Thanks for sharing!

  3. I love the Stone Soup story and this recipe looks so good!

  4. I remember the story of the stone soup! Your stone soup looks delicious, packed with such nice vegetables!

  5. That's very pretty. Stone soup was always one of my favorite stories, but it never occurred to me to make it. What a terrific idea!
    Joy's Book Blog

  6. This looks like a cozy meal for a winter's day. Will be trying this recipe soon!

  7. Stone Soup is one of my favorite stories...the kids would get a kick out of making this. Plus, it looks so good and packed with nutritious veggies. Delicious!

  8. Weird -- my comment from yesterday didn't show up:

    I to think this is perfect for winter. I love the idea of cooking the greens separately.

  9. If anyone tries this recipe with a stone--I'd love to hear how it turned out! ; )

    Beth F.. that IS weird about your comment because I did see it in my email inbox?! Broccoli rab would definitely work in place of the collards. Any green would really work--kale, mustard greens, beet greens, bok choi...

  10. My husband and I often eat hearty soups with fresh bread for dinner, and I am anxious to try this one. I am a vegetarian, and he is willing to eat veggie from time to time. I am hoping that this soup will be a way for me to get us to eat rutabaga; it's one of the few vegetables for which I have yet to find a recipe I like.

  11. Looks delish! thank you for sharing all these recipes Christine :)

  12. I remember reading Stone Soup to my kids. :) Um, no greens for me, please. Living here in the South, you either love them or hate them. Your soup sounds yummy, may have to sneak this past the kids and Chris soon!

  13. This looks delicious. When my daughters were little we would play the "Stone Soup" game -- aka, looking in the fridge and making soup out of the odds and ends I found there. It was really fun!

  14. TheBookGirl, I hope both you and your husband like this soup and that it makes rutabaga more appetizing.

    nath, do you think your sister will make this one or too many vegetables?

    Brandy, I didn't say I love collard greens, did I? LOL They're definitely not among my favorite vegetables, but I know they are so incredibly good for me and we get them in our co-op box often so I have learned to appreciate them. You could use spinach instead... I wouldn't even cook the spinach separately then. It will cook nicely right in the soup in the last 3 minutes or so of cooking time.

    Col, now that's a super game to get the kids to play and then eat their veggies! I love it! Too bad mine are too old for that now, too. :(
    Thanks for visiting! :)

  15. This looks good. I love Collard Greens....but the only way I've ever eaten them are the good way w/ ham & fat & vinegar :-) - I've never thought to put them in my soup. I'm not sure why not - seems like a no-brainer way to get in the nutrients!


Leave a comment! I love to hear what YOU think.
[I apologize, but I've had to disallow anonymous users to comment on my blog due to an influx of spam. I'll change it back as soon as I can. Thanks for understanding.]