Friends and Carrot and Leek Soup

Posted October 18th, 2011 in Meatless, Recipes, Soups to warm you by Rebecca Lane

I should have taken a photo – but as usual I forgot! But on Saturday we had friends from highschool Natalie and Joe stop by for the night. I spent the morning preparing by shopping at the market! As usual, I got talking with everyone and was late getting back, so I quickly put together this delicious soup. Since I haven’t given any recipes for quite some time, here you go!

Carrot and Leek Soup

1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 whole leek (clean, then slice all of the white and part of the green)
4 large carrots, peeled and cut into rounds
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups vegetable broth
4 cups water
2 cups dried red lentils, rinsed
1 can (14oz) of diced tomatoes, organic
1 bay leaf (or 3 small pieces in this case!)
1 tsp chevril
Pinch of pepper

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add leeks, carrots and garlic and cook until soft, about 10 minutes. Add broth, water, lentils, tomatoes, spices and stir. Cover pot and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes until lentils are soft. Discard bay leaf and serve.

Day 30 – Lunch at live

Posted May 5th, 2011 in Raw Foods, Restaurant review, Salads, Soups to warm you by Rebecca Lane

Tomato and Quinoa soup

Yesterday I had a wonderful day visiting with my friend and colleague Isabelle Zolkower, who also has the fortune of being married to a photographer. Rick, her husband, took the photos of me on Facebook and on this site – and I couldn’t be happier with them! My son told me that he now knows where he gets all of his good looks from!! I think he’s fishing for something?

After the morning primping in front of the camera, Isabelle took me to a restaurant near her home called “live” which serves organic raw food (and some cooked food too). I’m hoping to share the wonderful experience with you through words and images.

Be gentle with me, I’m not used to taking photos yet and they really need some practice!

Pecan sushi

Lunch started with Tomato and Quinoa soup (I started the soup before I remembered to take a photo – my apologies). It was served with dehydrated sweet potato chips sprinkled with cayenne pepper. The chips were a special treat and now I can’t wait to get my own dehydrator to make my own. The main ingredients of the soup were tomato, quinoa, carrots, onion, fresh basil and oregano from my best guess.

Then, between the 2 of us we chose 3 entrees – can you say greedy??? The first to arrive was a Pecan sushi – can you imagine? Wrapped in nori seaweed was pecan sunflower hummus with herbs around slivered carrots and dehydrated sweet potatoes, with a miso maple glaze. It was so good.

Beet and Cashew ravioli

A beet ravioli with basil pesto and balsamic reduction arrived next. The ravioli was made from very thinly sliced beets separated by an herbed cashew spread, and then on the top was sprinkled ground cashews. This was served with a spinach salad with a lime dressing and the balsamic reduction. I want to try to recreate this myself – perhaps at Carolyn Dupont’s next retreat in June!

The final entree was Rainbow kale and walnut salad – kale, walnuts, carrots, beets, raisins, seeds, sprouts, sun dried tomatoes dressed with a creamy dill tahini sauce. This was tasty, but I think I would leave the sun-dried tomatoes out, and use walnut butter instead of the tahini to make the dressing.

Rainbow Kale and Walnut salad

Neither of us loved the desserts, so we won’t say more about those. But overall we had a wonderful lunch. I hope these descriptions and photos give you food for thought for your next raw food experiments!

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Day 10 – Soup for the Soul

Posted April 8th, 2011 in Recipes, Soups to warm you by Rebecca Lane

I find that eating soup makes you feel like you’re doing something good for your body – and that’s good for your soul too! Combine the curried butternut squash soup with a grilled apple and camembert sandwich on a folded wrap, and a salad and you’ve got one very happy body.

I wanted to talk about dairy-free ways of making soups and sauces creamy. Usually I prefer not to use the boxed almond and rice milks to add to soups as they don’t really have a nice flavour and tend to separate when heated. To add flavour and texture to soups, my favourite warm me up foods, there are three different techniques I choose from:

  1. Make a nut milk with vegetable stock. Cashews, almonds or pecans are delicious and add wonderful flavour to soups. Use one part raw, shelled nuts, soaked overnight in filtered water (just cover with water and leave) to three parts water or stock in the soup. Grind the soaked nuts in a blender (has to be a high-speed blender like Vita-Mix), then add the liquid and blend until completely smooth. Add to the soup at the end of the cooking to smooth it out.
  2. Use dense starchy vegetables. Cut potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut squash or celery root into 1-inch pieces. Saute in oil in large soup pot with onion, garlic and dried herbs until the vegetables soften (about 15-20  minutes). Puree the mixture in a blender with just enough water or stock to make the right consistency. Return to the pot for an additional 10 to 15 minutes until completely smooth.
  3. Use coconut milk. This is the simplest method and one which I use often, especially if I’m making a curried soup like today. For every 6 cups of water or stock add one can of coconut milk. This is also delicious in cream of celery, cream of mushroom or cream of tomato soup.

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

1 tbsp olive oil
½ cup chopped onions
2 tsp curry powder (again, Lala’s is my favourite powder)
3 cups vegetable broth
½ cup apple juice
6 cups peeled, cubed butternut squash (if you have time, you could roast a butternut squash and use that – cut in half and cook for 45 minutes at 325 degrees F – make sure that you use parchment paper on the pan!)
1 cup peeled, chopped apples
¼ tsp salt
1/2 can of coconut milk (or you could use pecan milk here and it would be delicious)

 Add oil to large saucepan, heat to medium heat and add onions. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add water as necessary to avoid onions sticking to pan. Sprinkle curry powder over onions and mix.

Add vegetable broth, apple juice, squash, and apples. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes until squash is tender.

Use an immersion blender and puree soup in the pot. Add salt and coconut milk.

 Makes 6-8 servings

Thanks to Vegetarian Times article Ask a Chef?, March 2011