I’m a Reuben freak. Reuben sandwiches are definitely my favorite kind of sandwich. But I like Reubens in all forms. I’ve had Reuben pizza, and made Rueben eggrolls and Reuben dip for St. Patty’s days of the past – if it’s Reuben flavored, I’m there. That’s why the idea of this soup appealed to me. All of the Reuben flavors in a warm, comforting bowl.
The best part of this recipe was the corned beef. I went all out and cooked the meat myself – I didn’t think the deli’s corned beef would cut it and I think I was right. I also learned how valuable a meat thermometer is. I was following the cooking directions on the package of corned beef – it said that you should cook until the center of the meat was 165 degrees and gave me an estimated cook time of 3 hours. I checked with my (never used before) meat thermometer after about 1 hour and it was done! So glad I didn’t wait the full three hours!!
I made some rye croutons by making cubes out of rye slices and baking them for about 5 minutes at 350. The croutons added a good contrast of texture to the creamy soup.
I was pretty sure Dan would not be down with his soup. He loves a good Reuben, but creamy soups – not so much. But he ate his whole bowl happily. Creamy soup success achieved! I think that the big chunks of meat made it a little less painful. 😉
I’m sure additional vegetables would be a good addition to this, but I was trying to stick to the Rueben flavors.
*** The corned beef I bought came with spices, so I just made the soup in the same water that I made the meat in – I took the meat out after it was done and added back in at the end. Because of this I skipped putting pickling spices in the soup and instead of adding chicken broth I added a couple of tablespoons chicken bouillon. I cooked the onions and garlic in a separate pan and then added them to the broth along with the rest of the ingredients when they were done.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium size onion, diced into ½" pieces
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup flour
- 4 cups chicken broth***
- 2 cups cooked corned beef, chopped into bite-size pieces***
- 1 can sauerkraut, drained
- 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced into ½" pieces
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon pickling spices***
- ¼ teaspoon caraway seeds
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ cup half and half or cream
- salt, to taste freshly ground black pepper, about ½ teaspoon
- 1 cup Swiss cheese, shredded
- Toasted Rye croutons for serving
- Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper and saute another minute. Sprinkle with flour, stir to coat and continue stirring while the flour cooks with the onion for about 3 minutes.
- Add the broth and stir to scrape up any bits off the bottom of the pan. Add the beef, potatoes, sauerkraut, Worcestershire sauce, pickling spices, caraway seeds and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for about 12-15 minutes, just until the potatoes are tender.
- Remove from the heat and remove the bay leaves and any large pieces from the pickling spices. Stir in the half and half or cream. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Scoop into bowls and top with cheese and rye croutons.