I've used tofu, beans, rice, and quinoa all of which have been very tasty. I've also used roasted garlic, which was tasty, but I prefer the spicy flavor of fresh garlic.
2 heads garlic
2 quarts vegetable stock
several sprigs of fresh parsley
5-7 celery stalks
10-12 small to medium carrots
2-3 cups cooked garbanzo (chicks peas) beans
2 blocks extra firm tofu
cubed and sautéed (with olive oil and soy sauce)
1 cup quinoa (cooked and measured dry)
1 cup rice (cooked and measured dry)
Start the soup with about 1/3 cup olive oil in the bottom of a large soup pot heated on a medium setting. Sauté the garlic and shallots (or onions) for 5 min until translucent but not browned.
Add diced celery and sauté for another 5 min.
Add stock and turn heat up to medium high.
Add carrots and bring the soup to a simmering boil. Allow to cook this way for about 10-15min or until desired tenderness is achieved. Remove from heat.
Add freshly chopped parsley, (salt and pepper if you wish) and serve warm : )
I made a batch this last weekend with brown rice. Then I diced some fresh heirloom tomatoes from our garden and added them to each bowl. I swear this soup just keeps getting better and better!