Wild Rice Soup

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2 Tbs. Margarine
1 cup sliced celery (about 2 medium stalks)
1 cup coarsely shredded carrot (about 1 medium)
1/2 cup chopped onion (about 1 medium)
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper (about 1 small)
3 TBS. All-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups cooked wild rice
2 1/2 cups Vegetable Stock – (2 1/4 cup hot water and 2 1/2 teaspoons vegetable or chicken bouillon granules can be substituted for Vegetable Stock)
1 cup low-fat milk
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley.

Heat butter in a 3 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook celery, carrot, onion, and bell pepper in margarine. Stirring frequently until onion is tender. Stir in flour and pepper. Stir in wild rice and Vegetable Stock. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in milk, almonds, and parsley. Heat just until hot. Do not boil. 5 servings

Sage-Rice Soup: Add 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh or 1/2 teaspoon dried sage leave to celery, carrot, onion, and bell pepper in butter. Substitute 1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice for the wild rice. Omit almonds and parsley. Top individual servings with herb croutons, if desired.