Kitchen Experiments – Creamy Beany Broccoli Soup

I love soup! I love soup in the winter, spring, summer or fall. I love soup for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Any time of day, any time of year! I love brothy soups, creamy soups, or loaded with stuff soup. I just plain love soup! I am usually not a follow the recipe kind of a soup maker, I am usually just a throw it in the pot and see what happens kind of a soup maker. However, there are several recipes that have made it into my repertoire when I am in the mood to follow a recipe. The “Creamy Broccoli Soup” by Cynthia Lair from her Feeding the Whole Family cookbook has been one of my favorites since I had Cynthia as a teacher at Bastyr University while getting my masters in nutrition. The only problem that I had with this recipe was that it did not have a significant amount of protein in it. As I said, I like to have soup for breakfast, especially when I am working, but I like it to have protein so that it holds me over for the morning and I don’t spike my blood sugar. So, I decided to tweak the recipe just a little.

soup

Creamy Beany Broccoli Soup

2 large stems of broccoli with flowerets

1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium onions, chopped

2 leeks, white part mainly with 1 inch of green top, cleaned and chopped

1/2 t. sea salt

1 tsp. coriander

2 medium potatoes, diced

1 15oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

5 celery stalks, chopped

4 – 4 ½ c. water

2 Tbs. cashew butter

Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

  1. Cut off the broccoli flowerets, cut into bite-sized pieces. Place flowerets in small saucepan with a little water on the bottom. Steam for 5 minutes, until the color just starts to change. Peel the broccoli stems and dice into small pieces.
  2. Heat oil in a 3-quart pot. Add onions, leeks, salt, and coriander. Cover the pot and simmer on low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion/leek mixture cooks down to a nice mush (10 to 15 minutes).
  3. Add the broccoli stem pieces, potatoes, cannellini beans, celery, and water to the onion mush; cover and simmer until the potatoes are soft (15 to 20 minutes).
  4. Put the soup mixture in a blender, or use a hand blender, with cashew butter and blend until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Preparation time: 45 minutes

Makes 6 servings

I hope that you will try this recipe and enjoy it as much as I do for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Happy cooking!

Kitchen Experiments – Nut Butter

I love nuts! I love nut butters! I love how easy it is to make any kind of nut butter using my new Vitamix! With the Alcat diet plan that we have been following now for almost 3 months, it is recommended that you follow a 4 day rotation diet plus eliminate all food intolerances that were found through the Alcat blood test. The idea behind a rotation diet is that the body can become over-sensitized to certain food components if it has to deal with them constantly, which is possibly how the intolerances developed in the first place.  In order to avoid creating any new intolerances and to allow the gut to heal, the rotation diet is prescribed.  This allows the body to metabolize the “safe” foods only infrequently making it less likely that the body will develop new intolerances to them.

So back to the nut butters!  Each day of the rotation diet allows for 2-3 different nuts and seeds.  While it is easy to find peanut butter, almond butter and cashew butter, it is not so easy to find walnut and hazelnut butter or macadamia and pumpkin seed butter.  Actually, the best thing about making nut butters is that the combinations are endless!

nutbutterThis is my new favorite – macadamia and pumpkin seed butter.  Oh it is so delicious!  And so easy to make in the Vitamix!  I have a Champion Juicer that I have used for years to make different nut butters, but honestly, using the vitamix was so much easier.  I did not have to feed the nuts into the top of the juicer in small batches and wait for the juicer to grind them.  Instead, a stuck all the nuts and seeds in the vitamix, turned it on, and voila!  Nut butter!  What fun! Mmmm, I think that nut butter is calling my name right now!