Classic Tomato Soup with Pepper Relish

img_4522

There is nothing better than a hot bowl of tomato soup. On occasion, I will buy cans or cartons of tomato soup from the store and am usually disappointed with the product. While making your own can take a few more minutes, if you have the energy, it’s totally worth it.

Once you get everything into the pot, you simply let it simmer until the veggies are tender. There is very little labor necessary for this recipe. With most soup/stew recipes, feel free to get creative – add cream or fresh herbs, or incorporate a fun spice like berbere!

 

Ingredients

  • 1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 28 oz can whole tomatoes
  • 6 Tbls butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbls flour (optional, it just helps thicken the soup a bit)
  • salt, pepper, thyme, paprika to taste
  • 1/2 c tomato sauce (optional, I just happened to have some leftover that I wanted to use)
  • 3 small sweet peppers
  • olive oil and balsamic

 

  1. Melt the butter in a pan – please feel free to reduce this amount as I went a little stir crazy with the amount… although if you keep it at 6 Tbls, you won’t be disappointed
  2. Sauté the onion and carrot for 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic. Once this becomes fragrant after a few minutes, add the flour, spices, herbs, and tomatoes. Make sure to crush the whole tomatoes with your spoon. Bring so a simmer, then cover
  3. While the soup is simmering, roast some sweet peppers at 400F until charred. Once they cool, peel the skins and slice them. Dress them with a little olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper
  4. When the soup is ready, garnish with sweet pepper relish
Advertisements

Red Curry Soup

Winters in Minnesota are brutal. Soups and stews are my go to meals for the next 4 months. I was inspired by a recipe from Budget Bytes. Feel free to omit the fish sauce or make a vegan fish sauce. You can also try subbing in Worcestershire for the fish sauce as well.

I particularly like this Red Curry Soup – it has some heat and is loaded with veggies and protein.

I layered my soup with what I had on hand – basmati rice, spinach and tofu:

img_4487

 

The tofu was marinated in a mix of grated ginger, minced garlic, mirin, shoyu/tamari, curry paste and some maple syrup. Then I fried the tofu cubes in coconut oil.

My soup had a few different veggies. Here is the recipe I followed:

  • coconut oil
  • 3 small sweet peppers, diced
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled, diced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • grated ginger
  • minced garlic
  • red curry paste, approximately 1 Tbls
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 c vegetable broth
  • spinach
  • tofu
  1. Saute diced peppers, sweet potato, and onion for 5-7 minutes. Add the ginger, garlic and curry paste, cooking for another 1-3 minutes
  2. Once spices are fragrant, add the coconut milk and 2 cups of veggie broth. Cover and simmer until veggies are fork tender
  3. In a separate pan, fry the marinated tofu. If using spinach, saute in the same pan as the tofu
  4. Layer ingredients in a bowl and top with the soup

img_4490

French Onion Soup

image

I have been eating a ridiculous amount of French onion soup lately. This is really quite amazing because French onion is typically made with beef broth. However I have been finding more places that offer a veggie version of it.

When I saw this recipe posted by Sweet Paul, I know I had to try it out. The recipe isn’t vegan but you could easily sub earth balance butter or olive oil.

The soup turned out great, even though I had to use Swiss cheese instead of the gooey Gruyere.

Enjoy!

Chipotle Corn Chowder

image

Nothing like coming back from a blogging hiatus with a smoky soup to awaken your senses. Life certainly has a way of interfering with fun hobbies. The past two months have been occupied with job interviews, relocating and embarking in a new career. So far, so good. The only downside is getting used to my new shift and schedule. And so it goes.

Here I am now though and let me tell you, this soup is pretty amazing. I first made a batch this weekend, taking the ingredients from this recipe and just winging it. I do that a lot with soup and somehow it works. The downside is that when I come on here to blog about it and tell you how delicious it was…I am out a recipe. For me, soups are one of the best dishes to play around with. Not a fan of heat? Sub in a mild curry or cumin or paprika. Mix it up. See what happens! You can almost always (I say almost because some cooking catastrophes cannot be resurrected), balance a soup out by adding herbs, oil, salt, vinegar, starch, etc.

Ok, so with this outstanding soup, the first time I made it, I followed the recipe pretty closely. And by closely I mean I used 90% ingredients with 0% measurement accuracy. The second time I created a recipe similar to this:

  • Olive oil
  • ½ onion, diced
  • 3 stalks of celery, diced
  • 5 small potatoes, I used red and yellow, peeled and diced
  • 1 c of corn
  • Dashes of chipotle powder and paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-2 tsp veg base
  • 1-2 c plain almond milk
  1. Saute the onion and celery in oil until soft, add the diced potatoes
  2. Sprinkle in your seasoning, start off light, you will taste as you go and adjust as needed
  3. After a few minutes of marrying the seasoning with veggies, add the corn, bay leaf, veg base and almond milk
  4. You want enough liquid so the veggies are comfortable and have some room, with about an inch of liquid above them. If 2 c almond milk isn’t enough, add more or you can add water (*note using full fat coconut milk is really the way to go here)
  5. Simmer everything until potatoes are tender. You can either leave as is or take half out and puree

Porter Portabella Stew

FullSizeRender

In preparation for my Northwoods Lumberjack themed birthday party, I did a test run on this scrumptious stew. I reviewed a few beef & porter stew recipes and created a vegan version. The stew would pair nicely with some hearty bread or a wild rice pilaf. I will likely serve mine with chunks of crusty white bread. Yum! Also, feel free to add in more mushrooms. I only had 2 portabella caps on hand, but extra mushrooms, such as crimini’s would be really nice here. And in regards to the herbs I used, again you can use whatever you have on hand. This recipe is extremely versatile so have fun with it!

Ingredients

– Butter (use Earth Balance to make it vegan)

– Olive oil

– 1 large onion, diced

– 4 carrots, diced

– 4 yellow potatoes, peeled, diced

– 2 celery stalks, chopped

– 1/2 tsp rosemary

– 1 tsp Dynamite Herbs (by http://www.goldenfig.com)

– 2 cloves roasted garlic

– 1 can whole tomatoes (28 oz) + 1 1/2 cans of water

– 1 bottle of porter beer (I used Third Street’s Sugar Shack)

– 1-2 Tbls veg base

– 2 portabella caps, diced in large pieces

– 3-4 Tbls flour

– Salt and Pepper

1. Melt butter in a large pot (about 1-2 Tbls). Once melted, add the diced onion. Cook until fragrant and soft

2. Next, add the carrots, celery, garlic, herbs and potatoes. As the butter is absorbed by the veggies, add the beer, tomatoes and water. Bring to a slow simmer and add the veg base

3. In a seperate pan, saute the mushrooms in olive oil. Salt and pepper to season. Once tender, transfer to the large pot

4. In the mushroom pan, melt 2 Tbls of butter and add 3-4 Tbls flour to create a roux. Cook until flour begins to brown. With a whisk, transfer the roux into the stew mixture. Whisk until everything is incorporated and simmer until veggies are tender

Vegan Portobello Ramen with Kelp Noodles

Every so often a product comes in that throws me through a loop. Kelp noodles were such a product. I assumed that the noodles would have a strong seaweed taste. Well, you know what they say about people who assume?… Right. So, it turns out, the kelp noodles have zero flavor.

IMG_1461.JPG

Another surprise was that they were mildly crunchy and a little chewy, giving them a great dimension of texture. How cool is that!?

Realizing I now had a blank canvas to work with, I decided to stick with the Asian theme. I made a Thai peanut salad with kelp noodles which took the place of soba noodles. It was delicious. Later that night, I came across a recipe for Kelp Noodle Ramen. I was sold. When I got to the deli the next morning, I played around with the recipe, eventually settling on what I have below. It is absolutely delicious. And, if you would like softer noodles, try soaking them in water overnight. Otherwise you can simmer them for an hour on the stove.

Ingredients
– 2 pkg kelp noodles
– 2 large portobello caps, peeled, destemmed, and chopped
– 1/4 c oil (I used olive oil)
– 1″ ginger, grated
– 1 clove garlic, minced
– 1 tsp tamari
– 8-10 c water
– 1-2 Tbls veg base
– 1 Tbls vegan fish sauce
– 2 eggs, whisked (optional)
– cilantro for garnish
– sriracha for garnish

1. In a large soup pot, pour in olive oil. Turn the heat on and add the diced mushrooms. After 5 minutes, or when the mushrooms are turning tender, add the ginger, garlic and tamari. Cook for 1-2 minutes
2. Next, add the fish sauce, water and veg base. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer
3. If you soaked your noodles overnight, add them now along with the whisked egg. Once the egg is cooked, taste and add any additional seasonings or spices.
4. If you did not soak your noodles, let noodles simmer in the broth for about an hour. Right before you remove the ramen from the heat, add the whisked egg. Keep the pot on the heat until the egg is cooked
5. Top your ramen with cilantro and sriracha!

IMG_1462.JPG

Thai Butternut Soup

20131228-125045.jpg

To celebrate my next abroad adventure I made a Thai butternut soup. Ingredients that make it Thai-inspired include lime juice, coconut milk and ginger. I add extra sriracha to give it a bigger kick, but feel free to omit that part. The soup turned out creamy and full of flavor which makes it a recipe you must try!

Ingredients

– 1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks
– oil
– 1 small onion, chopped
– 2 cloves garlic, minced
– 2 Tbls fresh ginger, minced
– 1 Tbls tomato paste
– 2 Tbls lime juice
– 1 1/2 c coconut milk
– 3/4 c water
– sriracha to taste

1. Heat the oven to 400F. Coat the butternut cubes in a little oil and pour onto a baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes or until soft 2. Sauté onion in a little water. Once soft, add the garlic and ginger. Cook for a few more minutes
3. Add remaining ingredients, including roasted butternut. Using an emersion blender, puree everything together. Top with srirarcha and serve immediately

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup

Over the past 5 months, I was living in paradise. Sunny skies, moderate temperatures, and a pleasant (sometimes overbearing) ocean breeze. Fast forward to the present moment, I am staring at 18″ (roughly 46 cm) of snow. It certainly looks pretty, that is until you step outside. The low last night in northern Minnesota was -33 F and tonight windchills are predicted to reach -40F.

So I figured a good soup would help ease this transition into frigid, arctic temperatures. I bought a bag of root veggies, a leek and onion. It took awhile for the soup to come together since you spend a good hour roasting the veg, but at least it warms up the kitchen. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 4 large carrots (get colorful, if you can)
  • 7 parsnips
  • 2 sunchokes
  • 2 rutabaga
  • 1 Tbls oil
  • 1 Tbls tamari (amino acids/shoyu/soy sauce)
  • 1 leek
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 Tbls vegan chicken broth powder
  • 8 c water
  • pepper and smoked paprika to taste
  1. Chop the vegetables in bite sized pieces. Transfer to a large bowl. Coat with oil and tamari. Put the mixture on a cookie sheet and bake at 450F for about 50 minutes, or until tender

SONY DSC

2. While the veg is roasting, sauté the leek, onion and garlic in a little water. You can give these a rough chop. Everything will be pureed together at the end. Once the onions are translucent, add the broth powder and water

3. Add the roasted veg to the pot of leek/onion/garlic broth

4. Use an emersion blender to puree everything together

5. Sprinkle some pepper and paprika to your liking

SONY DSC

Italian Style Soup with Kale, Quinoa, Chickpeas and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

I threw together a simple soup with just a few ingredients: a carton of veggie broth, a can of chickpeas, a few sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, kale, quinoa, garlic and Italian seasoning. I sautéed a tablespoon of garlic in a little oil and then added some veggie stock and about a cup of quinoa. Once the quinoa was cooked, I added a bunch of kale which I had sautéed in a separate pan with the sun-dried tomatoes and garlic.

I simmered everything together for about 15 minutes.

SONY DSC

 

 

 

SONY DSC

Raw Carrot Avocado Soup

Well, I went raw today. I don’t know how people do it. I can do a few raw kale salads here and there, but this raw soup from Raw on $10 a Day (or Less!) really didn’t do it for me. However, I want to share it with you because my roommate seemed to enjoy it. Maybe my taste buds are being weird. I will say that I was quite impressed with my ninja. I didn’t think it would blend all of the raw ingredients so well! Definitely a great investment.

ingredients:

SONY DSC

  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 Tbls olive oil
  • 1 1/2 c water for blending

Chop the veggies, then add in the salt, oil and water.

SONY DSC

Puree for a few to several minutes until very smooth.

SONY DSC

Top with desired ingredients (I had to add some grain, nutritional yeast and corn, I was having a really hard time with this dish!)

SONY DSC