3 PINES 1ST SNOWSTORM VEGETABLE BEEF SOUP
I plan for this early, as soon as I hear the first snowstorm warnings! I have been preparing this hearty soup every winter for many years, and it sure is welcome on a cold and snowy winter night! After my husband and I retired and moved from the city to our little 1/3-acre "ranch" in the Virginia mountains, I re-named my recipe for the name of our home, which is named after the three small pines out by our driveway. Since there is only two of us, I freeze about 2 quarts of the soup so that we can enjoy this delicious brew during future snowstorms!
STOCK: 3 pounds lean Beef Shortribs, or other meaty, orbeef soupbones
1/4 cup Dry red wine
8 cups Hot Water
1 large Onion, stuck with 4 cloves
2 ribs Celery -- cut in chunks
Celery tops with leaves
2 Carrots -- cut in chunks
1 large Garlic Clove -- sliced
1 Bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse-ground Black Pepper
SOUP:
Reserved Stock and Meat
1 can Diced Tomatoes (16-oz.) -- unrained
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 medium Onion -- coarsely chopped
2 Carrots -- thinly sliced
2 large Potatoes -- peeled and diced
1/2 teaspoon ground Thyme
1 can Green Beans (16-oz.) -- undrained
1 can Lima beans (16-oz.) -- undrained
1 can Green Peas (16-oz.) -- undrained
1 can Corn (10-oz.) -- undrained
Salt and Pepper to taste
FOR THE Stock: Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place shortribs or soup bones in an ungreased shallow 13x9x2 baking pan; bake 25-30 minutes or until meat is browned. Transfer ribs to a large kettle or Dutch oven; set aside. On top of the stove over medium heat, deglaze the baking pan with wine; pour drippings into the kettle with the ribs. Add remaining stock ingredients; bring to boil. Lower heat and cover; simmer about 2 hours or until meat is separating from the bones. Transfer ribs to a platter; cut meat from the bones and shred, discarding the bones. Cover meat and set aside. Strain stock into a second kettle, pressing down on vegetables to release all their juices; discard vegetables. Cover and chill sdtock long enough to be able to skim congealed fat from the top.

FOR THE SOUP: After skimming fat from the top of stock, add meat, tomatoes and sugar; bring to a boil. Lower heat; cover and simmer 30 minutes. Add onion, celery, carrots, potatoes and thyme; simmer 20 minutes. Meanwhile, drain juices from canned vegetables into a bowl; reserve. Add vegetables, salt and pepper to pot; cover and simmer 15-20 minutes. (If more liquid is desired, add some of the reserved vegetable juices; otherwise, discard.) Makes about 3 quarts.

Copyright 2002 Carol Stevens, Shaboom's Kitchen, All Rights Reserved