Vegan hearty broccoli stem soup

Vegan hearty broccoli soup

A hearty soup should be filling, a healthy soup should be plant-based, dairy-free and low-fat. Or at least that’s what The Starch Solution from McDougall MD says. I disagree with McDougall on avoiding completely fat and still using sugar. I avoid refined sugar as much as possible and I still use olive oil, but only a tiny little bit, as macrobiotics do. Few drops are enough to add flavour, and the legumes make it so yummy I just had three bowls of it. Can’t hardly move. Gosh, have to stop being such a fab cook.

Credits for inspiring the idea and a much beautiful pic go to Cheezy loaded potato broccoli soup by Lunchbox. I didn’t use any vegan cheese, they are all very fatty anyway, nor my usual oats milk/cream, so this one is gluten-free too. The florets I used them in another dish yesterday but kept the stem for this one. Most people throw away the stem not knowing it’s edible! Broccoli stems are as nutritious as the broccoli crown. Such a waste of resources. Eat the peel of potatoes too, vitamins are underneath, just buy organic ones and it’ll be fine.

Ingredients (makes 2-4):

  • Broccoli stem
  • Two small potatoes
  • 50gr of split peas
  • 50gr of red split lentils
  • Eye of garlic
  • Small piece of red cabbage
  • Half a carrot
  • Piece of red pepper

Directions:

  • Cut broccoli florets and use for something else. For example this steamed broccoli with dried tomatoes and boiled wheat berries. Yummy!
  • Boiled wheatberries and steamed broccoli

  • Save/freeze broccoli stem for this dish.
  • Boil broccoli stem, two small potatoes, eye of garlic and 50 grams of split peas for 20 min.
  • Blend
  • Add 50 grams of split red lentils and boil 20 min further
  • As a topping: chop red cabbage, red pepper and grate carrot. Sauté in a pan with only two drops of oil.
  • Add your toppings plus pepper and black sesame seeds, or just regular sesame seeds, or ground flax seeds. We do eat with our eyes after all
  • Enjoy!

Widowed lentils soup with carrot and cavolo nero

Widowed lentils soup with carrot and cavolo nero

In Spain, ‘widowed lentils’ stands for meatless lentils. Binary-gender-criticism apart, I wanted to give some sexy greenery and carrot for the widow to play. Cavolo nero is rough enough to stand the long cooking green lentils need, so I gave it a try, and got one new recipe for the win!

Ingredients for 1 serving:
– Green lentils 100gr
– One clove of garlic
– Half bay leaf
– Piede of celery
– Small organic carrot
– Six cavolo nero leaves, chopped
– Salt

Directions:
Soak green lentils for at least half an hour. Some varieties need the whole night, check directions on your label. Boil everything together for at least 15 minutes, you won’t need no oil. Depending on the variety, you might need up to 45 minutes for the lentils to soften. Keep an eye and stir, you don’t want to run out of stock. Serve.

Menu Plan Monday ~ 20th to 26th Jan & Butter panic

This weekend my mum came to visit and brought some oranges from Valencia. It’s so uncommon to find oranges that have not been covered with wax, I decided I HAD to do something with the zest. That’s how me made a Shirin Polow (Iranian Rice Pilaf) with cashews, carrots, saffron and brown basmati rice. I panicked they would not like it and used real butter, and for this reason I have not uploaded a pic here. I keep telling myself butter was healthier than margarine, and answering myself that it’s a lame excuse for not using olive oil. Finally, me make peace. Me and myself agree to relax and enjoy the journey, and maybe use a healthy substitute next time.

New dishes for this week are jacket potatoes, vegan pasta bolognese and the forever delayed seitan and eggplant stew and pan pizza recipes. We’ll see if this is your week!

Sunday

  • Lunch: Catalan-style spinach (with sultanas and pine nuts)
  • Dinner: Barley salad and grilled portobello mushrooms

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Menu planning saves me time, money and makes my life simpler. It just needs some practice and discipline, but sharing it with the community around I’m and organizing junkie does help a lot. Personally, I tend to combine old favorites and new recipes, all simple, healthy and with modest seasonal ingredients. Every week I do at least a salad, a soup, one dish of legumes, one dish of wholemeal organic cereal (such as brown rice, quinoa, wholemeal pasta, bulgur, etc), something my omnivore would cook and a meal from the freezer I can skip in case we eat out.

Healthwise, in addition to that, I take every morning a B12 and vitamin D pill (when I remember), add grounded flax seeds to dishes (when I remember), have simple oatmeal breakfasts (or toasted bread with olive oil), snack nuts and dried or fresh fruits (also I can’t help chips and nachos from time to time), try to drink two liters of water every day (usually only one), try to sleep at least 8 hours (usually it’s 7), do a very soft gym class once or twice a week (starting now!) and have and occasional glass of wine or beer (or two, hehe).