Pureed Soups: Recipes for Autumn and Winter

September 30, 2013

In eating in accordance with the seasons, we should now be turning our focus to making dishes that are well cooked and warming in nature.  As the temperature drops, we can aid our bodies in digestion by adding more warming herbs and spices and consuming dishes that are well-cooked and warm (as opposed to raw and/or chilled).

If your hands and feet feel particularly cold after a certain meal, chances are it was too cold in nature for your body.  If you feel warmness in your extremities and body after a meal and have good energy, that particular dish helped to support, not extinguish, your metabolic fire.  Matt Stone writes a lot about this topic.  Although he speaks in terms of thyroid and metabolism, many of his observations correlate to the ideas of spleen and kidney yang in terms of Traditional Chinese Medicine. 

The following recipes are intended to serve as a base or outline.  They are the result of my own personal trials.  They will continue to evolve as I hope your creations do too.  The important part is the effort.  Good ingredients cooked with good intention make healthy food.   I particularly like these recipes because they are both vegan and paleo friendly, dairy and gluten free, and yummy!  In addition to eating just the soup, you can use it as a canvas for other ingredients:  beans, grains, chicken, nuts, seeds, etc.

**Note:  If you don’t already own an immersion blender, I recommend the investment.  Pureed soups are thick and creamy, and the hand held blenders make the job easy.  Plus, if you’re not a great chopper like me, blending the ingredients hides all the imperfections.

 Molly’s Broccoli Soup Recipe

3-5 Broccoli crowns or heads, cut.  If you use the full head, run a vegetable peeler over the stalk to remove the stringy outer-layer.  You will be using both the florets and stalks.  Cut into chunks, but don’t worry about making them look pretty.  You should have 6-10 cups of cut up florets and stem pieces.

1 medium onion or leek, chopped

2-4 garlic cloves, chopped

(A shallot can be included too or replace either the onion or garlic)

½ cup raw cashews

whole nutmeg

salt, pepper

4-8 cups stock (I use vegetable)

2 TBS olive oil

Heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion and sauté until soft.  Salt, pepper.  Add garlic and stir 1 minute.  Add broccoli pieces and cashews and stir into onion mixture.  Cover with stock.  I like a thick soup, so I leave the top layers exposed.  Salt, pepper.  Cover pot, bring to a boil, then reduce to low heat and simmer.  Once broccoli is tender, turn off heat.  Using a microplane, grate about a teaspoon of nutmeg into the soup (more or less to taste).  Salt, pepper.  Blend.

***12/10/13:  My new favorite:  Omit nuts, use only stalks (make sure to peal stringy outer layer; save florets for steaming or stir fry), and include fresh rosemary with the other seasoning.  You’ll need less broth without the florets; texture without the nuts will still be very thick and creamy as stalks blend up densely.

***4/8/14:  My NEWEST favorite:  use homemade bone broth.  Wow.

Molly’s Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

 1 butternut squash.  Peeled, seeded, and cubed.

1 apple, cut into chunks.

1 medium onion, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

2-4 garlic cloves

1 inch slice of ginger (about ½ – 1 TBS chopped)

*If you run cold, have symptoms that are exacerbated by cold, or like spicy food, add 1 hot pepper.  Serrano or habanero work well.  Remove seeds and chop.  I really like the spicy factor personally and see how many of my cold-patterned patients could benefit from the added heat.

2 TBS curry powder

1 tsp. cinnamon

2 TBS coconut oil

3-4 cups stock (I use vegetable)

salt, pepper

Heat coconut oil over medium heat.  Add carrots, celery, and onion.  Salt, pepper.  Sautee until they start to soften, 5-7 minutes.  Add ginger, garlic, and hot pepper if using.  Stir 1-2 minutes.  Add curry powder and cinnamon.  Stir.  Add squash and apple chunks, and stir to coat with mixture.  Add stock.  I prefer a thick soup so I leave the top parts of the squash and apples exposed.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce to simmer and cook until squash is tender.  Turn off heat.  Blend.

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What are you favorite warming soups and ingredients?  Please share your ideas and creations!

Remember, you are what you eat.

In good health,

Molly

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3 Responses to “Pureed Soups: Recipes for Autumn and Winter”

  1. Jeanne B. Says:

    Molly,
    I will definitely try these! By the way, you’re ratatouille recipe is wonderful!!!
    Jeanne

  2. Jeanne B. Says:

    Well….I finally got a chance to make the broccoli soup…It’s delish!!! Everyone should try it! Thanks, Molly, for another great recipe!


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