1 lb. lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 red pepper, chopped (about ¼” square)
1 or 2 stalks celery, chopped (about ¼” square)
1 cup diced ( ¼”) carrots
1 large can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes
3 cups V8 juice
1/3 cup raw long grain rice or use 1 cup cooked rice and omit the water
2/3 cup water
½ tsp. each dried oregano, marjoram, and basil or 1 ½ tsp. Italian seasoning
2 bay leaves
½ – 1 tsp. salt
Optional: Frank’s hot sauce
In large heavy bottomed pot, brown ground beef, stirring constantly to break up well. Add onion, red pepper, celery and carrots and continue to cook over medium high heat until onion is translucent and tender. Spoon off any excess fat.
Put tomatoes in food processor or blender and blend – this step is optional. Add to pot along with remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a bare simmer and simmer for at least 1 hour (up to 2 hours) covered, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaves before serving.
If soup is too thick when reheating, add a bit more V8 or some beef stock.