Tag Archives: Soup

Creamy Curry Soup

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So. While I like to think I’m an efficient human being who gets her stuff done (and done well), I admit that lately I’ve been slacking. Okay… not slacking but just… not doing anything. Showtime is upon me, which means the end of school (THANK ALL THE DEITIES!), and time feels non-existent. Everyday seems to slip by and I feel like I’ve achieved NOTHING. That being said, at least I JUST completed the second year of my program and SUMMER IS UPON US. So here is a warming soup…

This soup, creamy due to the roasted eggplant, is best served slightly warm, in my opinion. It’s earthy and spicy and crazy refreshing. Not to mention there are SO few ingredients it’s a snap to whip up. I had leftovers over a bowl of amaranth one day, and the next I dipped crackers into it – both were awesome.

CREAMY CURRY SOUP (serves 4)

  • 1 large eggplant, cut into 1/4 inch thick rounds
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 large shallot
  • 1/2 tablespoon curry powder of choice
  • 2 cups water (or milk alternative)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup Fresh cilantro, to garnish
  • 1/2 cup cremini mushrooms, chopped, to garnish

Method:

Preheat the oven to 400F. Coat the eggplant rounds in the grapeseed oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for about 8 minutes, until they are golden and quite mushy. Remove from the oven and let cool for five minutes. Remove the skin with a knife (it should peel off easily if it roasted long enough)

In a blender, blend the roasted eggplant, shallot, curry, water (or milk alternative) and salt and pepper. Divide the blended soup into four bowl, do a final test for salt and pepper levels, garnish with cilantro and mushrooms, and serve!

Spicy Pumpkin Soup

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MY SEMESTER IS FINALLY OVER. Yet I don’t feel any weight has been lifted because I know I have to go back in a few weeks… sigh. I guess all I can do to comfort me is eat some wonderfully warming food (including lots of chocolate).

I know this isn’t very festive, but I’m not in the festive mood. And I had left over pumpkin puree in my freezer. And I was craving a velvety smooth soup. I contemplated having a pumpkin and ginger soup, but I feel a bit over loaded on ginger these days so I used cayenne pepper to add a hearty, spicy punch. The leftovers thickened up very nicely; I dipped crackers and veggies into it like a dip. I also had one serving of leftovers with wild rice and cilantro and pumpkin seeds – pictured at the end (it was nice having something a bit heartier in the soup to add texture, but I liked it better without the rice – maybe on top of brown rice or quinoa would be better?).

SPICY PUMPKIN SOUP: (serves 4)

  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 cup white onion, chopped
  • 4 small garlic cloves
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • scallions, for garnish
  • pepper, to taste

Method:

In a medium sauce pan, heat the grapeseed oil on medium heat an sautee the onions and garlic until the onions are transparent; about 3 minutes.

In a high speed blender, blend the cooked onions and garlic with the pumpkin puree, vegetable broth, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, turmeric and salt until very smooth. (I let the blender run for about 90 seconds)

Pour the puree into the medium sauce pan and warm on medium heat. It’ll only take 3-4 minutes to warm the soup up.

Garnish with chopped scallions and black pepper.

Leftovers with wild rice, cilantro and pumpkin seeds.

Leftovers with wild rice, cilantro and pumpkin seeds.

Mama’s Borshch

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As I mentioned in the last post, the days are getting chilly. So what’s better to warm and soothe the soul than a hearty soup? In this case, I turned it into a stew by not adding much water and letting it simmer for a long time. But this meant that the veggies were crazy tender.

So. Borshch. You may be wondering “WTF IS THIS BORSCHCHSCHCSHHSCCSHHCHSCHSCH?” Good question. Essentially it’s a beet soup. You can look it up here┬áif you’re ultra interested. This recipe is from my mama. She makes it chunky (therefore I made it chunky), but I’ve had it where the beets (and carrots and potatoes) are shredded really finely. I’ve also had it where it excludes carrots and potatoes completely… but that’s not as tasty. Also, you’ll notice that I use canned beans and canned mushrooms… that’s because that’s what my Ma uses. You could easily cook fresh mushrooms and cook your own beans (any beans work. I love the cans of mixed beans because I’m indecisive).

One more note, you’ll notice that the amounts aren’t super precise. Such is the nature of family recipes. Onto the recipe!

MAMA’S BORSHCH: (makes one HUGE pot… serves 10)

  • 1 can mixed beans
  • 1 can mushrooms
  • 4-6 beets, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-4 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2-3 medium potatoes, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
  • handful green beans
  • 1 1/2 tomato liquid (Squished tomatoes, pasta sauce, V8, tomato juice, any tomato base!)
  • 4-6 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1-2 cups frozen peas
  • heaping tablespoon dill
  • white vinegar (optional)

Method:

Put everything into a HUGE pot (except the frozen peas and dill). Make sure you use enough water or vegetable broth to cover all the chopped veggies.

On medium-low heat, let simmer for about 90 minutes (or until the beets, carrots and potatoes are reeeeeal tender). The longer you let it simmer, the more stew like it will become! Add the frozen peas and dill and let simmer for another 20-ish minutes. (WOW forgive me how vague this is, it’s hard to put into words what I do by eating…)

To serve, dish out large helpings into bowl. My family likes to add 1/2 teaspoon of white vinegar to our borshch to add some tartness. It is wonderful and I suggest it!

Let's get cooking!

Let’s get cooking!

Simmering away

Simmering away

This soup freezes really well. So if you’re cooking for only yourself (like me!), then cook up a big pot and freeze some servings in baggies or tupperwear. It’s wonderfully convenient!

Cashew Ginger Carrot Soup

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HAPPY FRIDAY! What is better to soothe the soul and welcome in the chilly weather than a thick hearty soup? I saw this soup in Provigo in a premade tetra-pak (like you see veggie broth) that you just heat and serve, so I decided to try my luck with a nutty soup! I absolutely adore how the cashews make it super creamy and thick. The one thing I would do next time is increase the amount of ginger. That being said, I am a ginger fiend. I know many people might reduce the amount of ginger, but I really loved the punch it packed.

After having a fresh and warm bowl straight off the stove with a piece of toast, I put the remaining soup in the fridge. The next day I had it cold (with more tahini and lemon juice) and I dipped broccoli, zucchini, green beans and crackers into it. IT WAS AWESOME. It had thickened up in the fridge and made for a wonderful dip.

I want to make more soups to keep me warm that use nuts as a thickener, any suggestions? Pumpkin & ginger? Pumpkin & apple? Butternut squash & pear? Spinach & curry? I’LL JUST MAKE ALL THE SOUPS.

CASHEW GINGER CARROT SOUP (serves 4):

  • 1/2 cup cashews, soaked for atleast 2 hours
  • 2 tablespoons grapseed oil
  • 2lbs carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon corriander
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock/broth
  • Optional: red wine vinegar to taste

To garnish:

  • small handful flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 teaspoons tahini
  • fresh lemon juice
  • pinch of sunflower seeds
  • fresh ground pepper

Method:

A few hours before cooking, soak 1/2 cup raw cashews in a bowl with enough water to cover them completely.

In a large pot, over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the carrots, celery, garlic fresh ginger, thyme, cumin, corriander, pinch of cayenne, and about 1 teaspoon salt to the pot; stirring occasionally, let the carrots brown with the lid on (about 10 minutes). They will become quite fragrant and begin to soften. Add the soaked cashews and let cook for another 2 or 3 minutes with the lid on.

Add the vegetable broth to the carrots, bring to a boil then reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the carrots and celery are very tender (a fork should easily cut through).

Using an immersion blender, or by transferring into a blender in batched, puree the soup until thick and creamy! Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt or even red wine vinegar (I used 1 teaspoon of red wine vinegar)

Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish each bowl with a sprinkling of parsley, a teaspoon of tahini, a big squeeze of lemon juice, a large pinch of sunflower seeds, and a healthy grind of pepper.

Devour!