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.

[Recipe review] Tomato, courgette, white bean and basil soup (The perfect pantry)

This is a picture of Lablascovegmenu's Flickr that shows a bowl of Tomato, zucchini, white bean and basil soup

Baked beans had shown to lower total cholesterol levels and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, according to wikipedia, so I’ve been looking for new ways to cook white beans with vegetables, other than common meat-based spanish fabada (or soyrizo for based vegan fabada).

I followed this perfect pantry’s recipe. Well, more or less, as always. I didn’t use cheese, nor replaced it with anything. I didn’t use heavy stock, just added extra celery, and did not use enough tomatoes, just two cherry ones. But I did use dried beans instead of canned, that gives it more vitamins, is cheaper, has better taste and I bet is more filling. Just bear in mind dried beans do grow a lot from dry to soaked, and to keep an eye not to run out of water.

Ingredients:
– white beans
– olive oil
– courgette, chopped
– tomatoes, chopped
– dried thyme
– fresh basil leaves

Directions:
Start turning on the alarm the night before you want to do this. Soak beans in water when it rings.
The day after, I started with the sauté onion and garlic then boiled soaked beans with water, tyme and celery for more than one hour. Is calles slow cooking for a reason, I guess.
Then I added the chopped courgette and tomatoes and boiled for some ten to fifteen minutes more.
Serve.

Overall rating… meh. Don’t get me wrong, beans were delicious, but they always are. I guess it’s really good if you’re used to baked beans with tomato, because this recipe them an italian twist. But for me, it still lacks something, and I’m not the kind of girl to rely on heavy vegetable stock or cheese for that. Will keep on searching!

Recipe review: Vegan Cream of Cauliflower (Gluten Free Vegan Girl)

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“De som vill sjunga hittar alltid en sång” – Swedish proverb

Dill was never something I was much into, because my west-mediterranean family has never used it for cooking. Then I tried IKEA’s sauce for salmon and however unhealthy, I felt immediately in love with that lovely new taste behind the sugar. Now I only had to find a healthy dish it could go with, and came upon a recipe from the Gluten Free Vegan Girl. Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present you: Vegan Cream of Cauliflower with Dill.

This adaptation of her vegan recipe uses dill and a bay leaf as herbs, oats milk as a non dairy milk (sorry it’s not gluten-free anymore), and plain water and celery instead of vegetable broth. If you are going to use celery, please choose organic at least for this once, conventionally grown celery has high pesticide residue. What I do is buying it at the farmer’s market, cutting it into pieces and freezing it, then I always have some in hand for when I need it.

For two servings I used:
– Half an onion
– Half a garlic clove
– A small potato (organic)
– Half a cauliflower (organic)
– Half carrot (organic)
– A quarter a glass of oats milk (just the one I had around)
– A little piece of celery (organic)

Directions:
– As she suggests: sauté onion and garlic in a pot until onion is transparent. Then added chopped potato and carrot and cooked a little longer. I always use olive oil, but try to keep it as low as possible, few drops, so never more than a tea spoon.
– The following thing was adding water, the cauliflower, a piece of celery, a pinch of dill, salt and half a bay leaf. Left boiling for some fifteen minutes. Blended. Added the milk. She suggests heating it up all again after the milk. I did not, was too hungry. In any case the soup was warm enough to keep warm even with the milk. So that was it.
– Serve.

My conclusion: an overall outstanding recipe. Comforting. Healthy. And if it can be this good after my wrongdoings, it’s so easy anybody can do it. Give it a try, sing-along and… Smaklig måltid!

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[Recipe review] Sweetly Savoury Borscht – vegan beetroot soup (Kellie’s Food to Glow)

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I was never much into beetroot, then lived in Poland for a year. Now I crave for this traditional vegan soup every winter, and mourn because it doesn’t matter how many recipes I try, I can’t produce anything slightly similar to Barszcz. Seemed it was not just the name that was difficult.

Untill this time when I tried Kellies Food to Glow russian version.

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Apparently I wasn’t using enough water. Plus I forgot crucial ingredients such as celery. I’m chopping fresh organic celery and freezing it, so there will always be some at hand. Remember to always buy organic celery, the Environmental Working Group pointed it as the second most toxic produce item in shopping carts.

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Anyway, I just chopped the ingredients and boiled them. I tend to overlook recipe proportions, so this time again just threw watever was on hand. Used rice vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar and skipped the ground allspice, buckwheat and honey. And when I tasted it realized something: all this time I have not been using enough water. Beetroot has a strong flavour, be careful with it. So more water and an amazingly closer result. I’m almost there. Almost. I might try to prepare this the day before, they say it tastes better. But next time I’ll do it will be with the version from In Pursuit of More. I’m close, I can smell it! 😀

Recipe review: Creamy Roasted Sprouts n’ Pasta (What smells so good?)

It’s been a while since I discovered this original recipe from Jazzijava and it has never failed me. I’ve tried it again and again in macaroni or spirulina black spaghetti, always boiling the frozen brussels sprouts.

This time though, I did roast fresh brussels sprouts as indicated, used wholemeal instead of white macaroni and grilled with grated bread. Also I used a pair of susbtitutes and grilled in the oven. Not such a bad result after all 🙂

You’ll need:
– Fresh or frozen brussels sprouts
– Any kind of pasta (better wholemeal organic)
– A piece of tofu (preferably firm)
– Lemon or vinegar (either grape or rice will be fine)
– Fresh ow powdered garlic
– Breadcrumbs (optional)
– Paprika
– Salt
– Olive oil (optional)

Instructions:

Boil the whole brussels sprouts till tender if they are frozen, or roast them in halves in the oven if they are fresh. If you go with the roasting, Jazzijava instructs to “spray a glass baking dish lightly with olive oil, add the sprouts to the pan and roast at 375 F for 10 minutes. Stir, and roast for 10 more minutes.” This is what I did this time and worked perfect, be careful though to spray only a pair of drops of oil.

Boil the pasta in saulty water.

Blend the rest of the ingredients for the sauce. I didn’t have lemon so I used a piece of raw yellow pepper and rice vinegar as a substitute, and instead of the onion powder, I chopped some spring onions, then blended together with the tofu, garlic, salt, paprika, parsley and water. If you use too much water, as it happened to me this time, you can heat the sauce to thicken it up.

Now mixing with the pasta will be enough. But if you still want to give it a chunchy final touch, drop some breadcrumbs and oregano on top and grill. Tadá!

Menu Plan Monday ~ Nov 19th to Nov 25th

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.

This weeks I’m trying a new quinoa soup recipe. Quinoa is a very nutritious cereal originally from Andes, it does not contain gluten and it’s yummy and easy to cook. Give it a try!

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

  • Lunch: Quinoa soup with onions, carrot, chard and spinach
  • Dinner: Vegan sausage with peas and mashed potatoes

Saturday

Sunday

Menu Plan Monday ~ November 12nd to 18th

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.

This week I’ll be doing some dishes with white beans. I found them in a little indian shop at the Shepherd’s Bush Market. Yummy! We also visited visit Borough Market and got some mushrooms I’ll be using this week either to grill or for some other recipes. Bok Choy was not so exciting, but maybe because I used in another dish, so I’ve put it again to try the soy recipe. Enjoy!

Monday

Lunch: Spaghetti aglio oglio ed pomodoro seco
Dinner: Oyster mushroom vegan risotto

Tuesday

Lunch: Grilled Bok Choy with white beans and squash soup
Dinner: Vegan curried coconut milk noodles

Wednesday

Lunch: Chard rice soup
Dinner: Catalan-style spinach

Thursday

Lunch: Grilled tofu salad and Organic green split peas miso soup
Dinner: Grilled artichokes and grilled flat mushrooms

Friday

Lunch: Vegan Ceviche de tofu and Roasted Cabbage with Lemon
Dinner: Swiss vegan sausage with soy-instant mashed potatoes and boiled peas

Saturday

Lunch: Cous cous with vegetables
Dinner: Kale & coconut chickpea chapatis

Sunday

Lunch: Cabbage soyrizo steamed wraps
Dinner: Spring garlic and mushroom miso organic wholemeal noodles

Broccoli leftovers fusili thick soup


Instead of what I planned for today, I’ve used some steamed broccoli leftovers. Felt like a soup, so I threw to the hop a pair of other leftovers I had in the frigde (leek and squash) and boiled them then blended together with the broccoli.

But I wanted something more filling and didn’t feel like bread. So I thought rice or dried split peas would go great with this. However, I was getting so hungry I would not even the 15 minutes of white rice and so I added the fusilli. It’s the first time I cook fusilli in this way, and it feels way unappropriate, but what the frak, it was so yummy I couldn’t wait and even burned my tongue. Still hurts. Dadadá.

The plate is presented with oregano, fres basil leaves and black sesamee.

Menu Plan Monday ~ November 5th to 11st

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.

This week (posting again on tuesday *ugh*) were are having a bit of a cold, so I’m back to good old onion soup. We were on Shepherd’s Bush Market this Saturday so loads of low-priced aubergines. I’m also excited I’ll be finally trying the chineese vegetable Bok Choy and another new soup recipe: White bean mushroom soup. Not that I’ve found good white beans in London, but we are planning to visit Borough Market on Saturday, so I’m confident we’ll get them there, together with loads of veggies for next week. Yay!

 Menu Plan Monday ~ November 5th to 11st

 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

  • Lunch: Grilled asparagus
  • Dinner: Courgette risotto

Sunday