New Year’s Eve vegetable soup
3 cups vegetable broth
1 cup water
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and sliced fairly thinly
3 parsnips, peeled and sliced
3 red potatoes, scrubbed
1 bunch asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces with woody ends removed
1/2 pound mushrooms, coarsely sliced
dried herbs to taste
1-2 Tb. soy sauce
1. Sauté the onions and garlic in a tablespoon or two of olive oil on low heat for about 5-6 minutes, until soft, in a large soup pot. Add the broth, potatoes, parsnips, and carrots, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until the vegetables are tender.
2. Meanwhile, sauté the mushrooms in a frying pan with a tablespoon of olive oil until they release their juices. Add the asparagus and keep heat on low, stirring occasionally under the asparagus is tender.
3. Add the cup of water (or more, to taste) to the soup pot, and mash the vegetables well with a potato masher (you could also use a stick blender to make the soup more soupy; I used what was on hand). Toss in some dried herbs (I used thyme and basil) and salt and pepper to taste.
4. Add the mushrooms and asparagus and stir to combine. Taste for sweetness; if it’s fine, forgo the soy sauce, but if you’re like me and don’t like things too sweet, add soy sauce to taste. I also sprinkled in a tiny bit of cayenne pepper (about 1/2-tsp.).