Butternut Squash Soup

Enjoy this recipe that I created for www.ketologic.com.

PER SERVING: CALORIES 250 | FAT 22G | CARBOHYDRATES 9G | FIBER 1G | NET CARBOHYDRATES 8G | PROTEIN 3G

This recipe for butternut squash soup is very easy to prepare and the results are delicious. It’s best to pair this soup with a protein to balance the macronutrients, as the carbs are a little high compared to the protein. One easy way to balance that ratio is by simply adding shredded chicken or pork to the soup. Just one cup of protein can bring this soup very close to the ideal 75/5/20 macro range.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed (can be found pre-cut in the produce section)
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 pieces bacon, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon artificial brown sugar (Truvia Brown Sugar Blend)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • dash of hot sauce

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss the butternut squash cubes in a bowl with the olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Lay the squash evenly on a lightly sprayed/greased sheet pan and roast in the oven for about 25-30 minutes (rotating the pan halfway through) until it begins to brown and is soft all the way through.
  2. Put the chopped bacon in a large soup pot and turn the heat on medium-low. Let the fat render slowly, stirring often with a spoon for about 5-7 minutes. Add the butter, onion and garlic; cook until soft (about another 5 minutes), stirring often.
  3. Increase the heat to high and add the white wine; stir constantly for about 45 seconds until most of the liquid has evaporated, scraping any bits off of the bottom of the pot. Add the next 5 ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Let simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Turn the heat off on the stove. Season with the artificial brown sugar, dash of hot sauce and salt and pepper. Blend the soup with an immersion stick blender or scoop into a blender and puree until smooth. Adjust seasoning as needed with salt, pepper or spice. Sweeten with more brown sugar blend if needed.
  • Yield: 8

http://www.ketologic.com

http://www.yourwaycuisine.com

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, http://www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica.

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Cauliflower Soup

Enjoy this recipe that I created for www.ketologic.com.

PER SERVING: CALORIES 680 | FAT 62.25G | CARBOHYDRATES 15G | FIBER 3G | NET CARBOHYDRATES 12G | PROTEIN 19G

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 6 pieces bacon, diced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup finely grated Parmesan
  • ½ whole milk yogurt
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • dash of Tabasco
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives

Note: It is preferential to use grass-fed meat and dairy products, as well as Himalayan salt.

PREPARATION:

  1. Remove the leaves and thick core from the cauliflower, coarsely chop, and reserve.
  2. In a large soup pot, cook the bacon slowly over low-medium heat, stirring often with a wooden spoon for about 8-10 minutes until bacon is starting to crisp and most of the fat is rendered.
  3. Add the butter and the onion and garlic; cook until softened, but not browned (about 5 minutes).
  4. Add the cauliflower, thyme, and stock; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, add heavy cream, cover, and cook until the cauliflower is very soft and falling apart, about 15-20 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat. Use a handheld immersion blender to puree the soup, or puree it in a blender and return it to the pot. Add the Parmesan, whole milk yogurt and Tabasco and stir until smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Garnish with chives.

The recipe makes about 4 large (bowl-size) servings or 8 small (cup-size) servings.

  • Prep Time: 1 hour(s) 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 large (bowl-size) servings or 8 small (cup-size) servings

http://www.ketologic.com

http://www.yourwaycuisine.com

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, http://www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica.

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Braised Short Ribs with Cream of Onion Soup

Enjoy this recipe that I created for www.ketologic.com.

PER SERVING: CALORIES 815 | FAT 75G | CARBOHYDRATES 8G | FIBER .75G | NET CARBOHYDRATES 7.25G | PROTEIN 27G

This recipe is very simple to prepare, but it will likely impress those that get to eat it. You should get satisfying results with the cook time, but it can be cooked lower and slower if you have the time. If you decide to cook it in the 225-250 degree range, then you will need about 4-5 hours of cook time. You are looking for the short ribs to be very tender, but not completely falling apart. If they are at all difficult to slice into, then they need to go back in the oven for at least 30 minutes. If you do not have a Dutch oven, there is no need to fret. The first and last steps can be prepared in a pot, then transferred to a roasting pan or casserole dish covered with foil for cooking in the oven. Also, if you can find them, I personally prefer boneless short ribs to bone-in.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 whole beef short ribs, about 2 pounds
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 yellow onions, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 bunch leeks, rinsed and sliced, green ends discarded
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • dash hot sauce

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Season the short ribs all around liberally with salt and pepper. In a dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil at medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, sear the short ribs on both sides for about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer the short ribs to a plate.
  2. Add the other 2 tablespoons of olive oil, along with the 2 tablespoons of butter to the pot. Toss in the onions, leeks and garlic and stir continuously for about 2 minutes until it just begins to soften. Add the red wine, soy sauce, and the beef stock, and return the short ribs to the pot; turn off the heat on the stove. Cover the pot and place in the oven for about 3 hours. Check the short ribs. They should be tender, almost falling apart, but not quite. More cooking time may be needed if they are still tough.
  3. Return the short ribs back to the plate and put the pot back on the stove at medium-high heat. Add the heavy cream to the pot and bring to a boil; reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 5-10 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper and add the dash of hot sauce, along with the Parmesan cheese (if you decide to use it). Puree in a blender or with a hand-held immersion blender. Note: If the soup looks to thick, it can easily be thinned out with a little water or more beef stock. If it is too thin to your liking, simply put it back on the stove at medium-low heat and let it reduce for a few minutes. It can either be served as a soup or used as a gravy for the short ribs.
  • Yield: 8

http://www.ketologic.com

http://www.yourwaycuisine.com

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, http://www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica.

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Miso Noodle Soup

These days, miso is not as unfamiliar to most Americans as it was even a decade ago. With the increased popularity of sushi bars and authentic Japanese and Chinese eateries around the country, miso soup is more than recognizable to most patrons. While the fermented soybean paste is somewhat high in sodium, and some of its health claims have been recently exaggerated and contradicted, studies have shown that miso can aid digestion, strengthen the immune system and even lower cholesterol. It is also a complete protein containing all nine essential amino acids, making it a nice addition to a vegetarian diet.

This month’s recipe takes the traditional miso soup and adds some sustenance by enhancing it with vegetables and buckwheat (soba) noodles. Both the veggies and the noodles add a sufficient amount of protein and fiber, making the soup filling enough to be a complete meal.  The final product yields a light, but satisfying dish that offers a significant amount of vitamins and nutrients, along with a healthy amount of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Enriching this soup with additional vegetables of the cook’s choice is never discouraged. I also recommend the addition of hot chili for those who enjoy a kick.

The recipe serves 6–8. It makes about 4 quarts.

Ingredients:

  • 4 ounces buckwheat (soba) noodles
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut or olive oil
  • 2 leeks (white part only), split, rinsed, and sliced
  • 1/4 cup miso paste
  • 1 medium bunch Swiss chard
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup edamame (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 block extra-firm tofu, cubed
  • 2 scallions, finely sliced

Directions:

  1. Prep all vegetables accordingly. Remove the stalks and stems from the Swiss chard and coarsely chop; set leaves aside. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil and cook buckwheat noodles according to package directions (about 3 minutes or until tender). Strain noodles through a colander and run under cold water; set aside.
  2. Set another large pot on the stove over medium heat. Add oil and heat for 1 minute. Add leeks, chard, carrots and garlic to the pot. Stir/cook often for about 5-8 minutes, until vegetables begin to soften.
  3. Add 2 ½ quarts water to the pot. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, whisk in miso paste and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes until vegetables are tender.
  4. Add edamame and chard leaves. Simmer until chard leaves are wilted and edamame is cooked through, about another 2 minutes.
  5. Divide buckwheat noodles into bowls for serving. Ladle miso/vegetable soup over top. Garnish with tofu and scallions and serve.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 141 / Fat: 3g  / Carbohydrates: 20g / Fiber: 4g / Protein: 9g

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica.

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Southwest Black Bean Soup

black-bean-soup

This month’s recipe is an easy to prepare black bean soup with hints of spicy southwestern flavors. It is very filling, but is low in calories and fat, and high in protein and fiber. This can be a great first-course or can be the center of the meal by itself. There is the option to blend part or all of the soup after it is finished cooking, but it is not a requirement. Blending half of the soup gives it a nice consistency, and is less work on the digestive system, however the flavors remain evident regardless. The recipe makes about 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 14oz cans black beans
  • 2 cups vegetable stock or broth
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • dash of hot sauce
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Preparation:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot at medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and jalapeño and stir often for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and continue stirring for another 2-3 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
  3. Add the tomatoes and the next three spices. Cook down, stirring continuously for about another 3 minutes.
  4. Add the black beans and the vegetable stock/broth. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes.
  5. Remove pot from the heat. Season liberally with salt, pepper, hot sauce, lime juice and taste. If needed, add more seasoning and thin the soup with more stock/broth.
  6. Blend half of the soup in the blender or with an immersion blender and return to the pot (optional). Garnish with the cilantro before serving.

Makes about 8 servings.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 168 / Fat: 3.5g / Saturated Fat: .5g / Carbohydrates: 26g / Fiber: 6g / Protein: 8g

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Thai Curry Noodle Soup

curry-noodle-soup

This month’s recipe is a classic Thai curry soup that is very quick and easy to prepare. I have been a big fan of Thai food since my teens, but my true love affair with it commenced during my travels in Southeast Asia a few years ago.  After sampling as many different dishes as possible while touring that section of the continent, I have spent many days and nights trying to recreate authentic versions of all of my favorites. I have had mixed luck competing with the authenticity of the pros in Thailand, but this red curry soup comes pretty close to one you might find on the street in Bangkok.

This recipe makes for a very satiating meal that provides numerous health benefits. The herbs and spices, along with the onion, garlic and ginger provide an abundance of antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxifying elements to the dish. While coconut oil and coconut milk have gotten a bad rap in the past for their high amount of saturated fats, recent studies have shown them both to actually lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and raise HDL (good cholesterol), while reducing arterial damage and providing minerals such as manganese, phosphorus and magnesium.  Using light coconut milk in this recipe helps to cut back on the total calories and fat in the dish.

This curry soup can be prepared in well under an hour even with the lengthy prep work involved. However, when time is on your side, more flavor will develop the longer it sits at low heat. There is always room for any additional vegetables, such as the optional mushrooms and kale, and you won’t go wrong adding in another protein such as chicken or shrimp. The recipe makes about 8-12 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 4 cups vegetable stock or broth
  • 3 cups light coconut milk
  • 2 cups kale, chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup button or cremini mushrooms, sliced (optional)
  • 1 pound extra-firm tofu, cubed
  • 1 package thin rice noodles
  • 1-2 limes cut up into wedges
  • fresh cilantro
  • sliced scallions
  • fresh basil
  • bean sprouts
  • thinly sliced fresh red chili peppers (optional)
  • thinly sliced bell pepper (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Heat a large stockpot to medium-high heat. Sauté the onion in the coconut oil for 1-2 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and red curry paste and stir continuously for another 1-2 minutes.
  2. Add the vegetable stock or broth and stir thoroughly, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Add the coconut milk and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 10-15 minutes. Add any desired (optional) vegetables of your choice at this point, such as mushrooms and/or kale.
  4. Add the tofu at the last 2 minutes of cooking to heat through.
  5. Taste the broth and season to preference with kosher salt and/or a dash of soy sauce or fish sauce if needed.
  6. You can either cook the noodles according to the package directions and cool them by running under cold water, or you can break a chunk off and put them in a bowl dry and ladle the hot soup over top and allow to sit for a couple of minutes until they soften.
  7. Squeeze a couple of wedges of lime into the soup bowl and garnish with the rest of the desired ingredients.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 235 / Fat: 11g / Saturated Fat: 5g / Carbohydrates: 26g / Fiber: 4g / Protein: 11g

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Vegetarian Pho (Vietnamese Noodle Soup

Pho

Nearly every country has at least one national dish recognized worldwide. Just as Thailand has pad thai, India is known for curry, and Spain is renowned for its paella, Vietnam has pho noodle soup. Traditional pho is a popular street food consisting of a meat-based broth cooked for hours or even days. This vegetarian version can be prepared at home in under an hour. The ingredients can be as extensive or as simplified as desired. Most recipes call for whole cloves and star anise in the broth, however, I find it unnecessary to purchase a whole jar of each just to prepare this variety.

This recipe is light but filling, and offers an assortment of nutritional benefits. It is low in calories and fat, and the herbs and spices give the soup many cleansing and detoxifying properties. There is room to add any desired vegetables to increase the nutrient density, and the flavor can be tweaked to be either subtle or bursting with the spice and heat of your preference. The recipe serves 8.

Ingredients:

Broth:

  • 8 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 large onion, diced large into about 8 chunks
  • 1 medium stick fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into coins
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 whole cloves (optional)
  • 3 star anise (optional)
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 bunch of basil stems (reserve leaves for pho)
  • 1 bunch of cilantro stems (reserve leaves for pho)

Pho:

  • 1 package rice noodles
  • 1 8oz package baked tofu
  • cilantro
  • basil
  • sliced green onions
  • bean sprouts
  • shredded carrot
  • lightly sautéed or roasted mushrooms, sliced
  • lightly sautéed or roasted bok choy
  • thinly sliced hot peppers, such as Thai chili
  • crushed peanuts
  • lime wedges
  • fish sauce, dash
  • soy sauce, dash
  • hot sauce, dash

Preparation:

  1. Combine all of the broth ingredients in a large pot, bring to a boil at high heat, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for about 30-45 minutes. Strain broth, return to the pot, cover and keep hot at low heat. Discard solids.
  2. Meanwhile, start prepping your pho ingredients. Any combination of the above ingredients may be used and anything else desired may be added.
  3. Cook noodles according to package directions. Run under cold water to keep from overcooking.
  4. If using raw tofu, mushrooms or bok choy, I find it best to make a quick stir-fry or roast them before adding to the soup. If stir-frying, heat a large pan or wok until hot, add a tablespoon of oil (coconut is recommended for stir-frying) and add ingredients to be sautéed. Season with a bit of salt and pepper or soy sauce. If roasting, toss all ingredients in olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread out on a roasting or sheet pan (greased or sprayed) and roast for about 7-8 minutes at 400 degrees.
  5. Ladle about 1-2 cups of broth into a bowl. Add noodles and any other desired ingredients. Season to perfection.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 220 / Fat: 5g / Saturated Fat: 1g / Carbohydrates: 35g / Fiber: 5g / Protein: 8g

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica. 

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Quick Pumpkin Tortilla Soup

Tortilla soup

Tortilla soup is as much a staple in the Mexican diet as tacos or salsa. The ingredients are often pretty simple, as the base usually consists of not much more than some broth, peppers, tomatoes, beans, spices, and maybe some other added protein like chicken or pork. I enjoy few things in the world as much as I enjoy authentic Mexican food. Therefore, I often cringe in disgust (or at the very least in disappointment) at many of the variations of Tex-Mex that we have managed to concoct north of the border over the last 50-plus years.

With that being said, many knock-offs of traditional Mexican can still be quite tasty. This month’s recipe is one of those reproductions that is quick, easy, healthy and delicious. It can be prepared in about 30 minutes with ingredients that you likely already have in your kitchen. The end result is a light, but filling, meal that is an excellent source or fiber, protein and vitamin A. Serves 8.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced small
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 4 cups vegetable stock or broth
  • 15oz can pure pumpkin
  • 2 (14oz) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup corn, canned or frozen
  • 1 cup medium salsa
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Dash of hot sauce

Toppings/Garnishes

  • Chopped cilantro
  • Sliced green onions
  • Tortilla chips
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sliced avocado or guacamole
  • Sour cream

Preparation:

  1. In a soup pot, sauté the onion, garlic and spices in olive oil at medium heat until it begins to soften (about 3-4 minutes).
  2. Add vegetable stock/broth, increase heat to high and bring to a simmer. Add pumpkin and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add remaining ingredients. Stir thoroughly and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 10-15 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Ladle soup into a bowl and garnish with any or all of the toppings/garnishes.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 140 / Fat: 2g / Saturated Fat: 1g / Carbohydrates: 24g / Fiber: 8g /

Protein: 6g

# # #

Brandon McDearis is the owner of Your Way Cuisine, www.yourwaycuisine.com, a personal chef and nutrition consulting business. He is also a professional wanderer that spends much of his year trotting the globe and working in places such as Alaska, Australia, and Antarctica. 

Cumin

Cumin is the spice that brings the musky edge to curries and deepens the flavor of chili. It’s unique flavor complexity has made it an integral spice in the cuisines of Mexico, India and the Middle East. While cumin seeds are sometimes used whole, they are more commonly ground into powder which allows the spice to integrate more fully with other ingredients and seasonings.

Native to Egypt, cumin seeds have been cultivated in the Middle East, India, China and Mediterranean countries for millennia. It’s seeds were highly honored as a culinary seasoning in both ancient Greek and Roman kitchens. Cumin’s popularity was partly due to the fact that it was a  viable replacement for black pepper, which was very expensive at the time.

But, it’s not taste alone that has made cumin a favorite spice for centuries. Cumin seeds are excellent source of iron— an integral component of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen from the lungs to all body cells. Recent research has shown that cumin may also stimulate the secretion of pancreatic enzymes, compounds necessary for proper digestion and nutrient assimilation. Cumin seeds may also have anti-carcinogenic properties as demonstrated in one study, where cumin was shown to protect laboratory animals from developing stomach or liver tumors.

Whole cumin seeds have a shelf life of at least a year if you store them in an airtight jar or container while ground cumin loses its strong flavor and aroma after a few months, even if you store it well. Grinding your own cumin from whole seeds allows you to store the whole spice in your cupboard and have it on hand when you need it, while still enjoying the flavor and texture of the ground version.

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Butternut and White Bean Soup

Butternut White Bean Soup

It’s the time of year again to enjoy fresh winter vegetables, and what better way to do that than to indulge in a warm bowl of soup after a crisp autumn day. This month’s butternut white bean soup can be prepared in no time, and the results will be quite pleasing. Not only is the finished product filling and delicious, but this recipe is packed with nutrients and anti-inflammatory properties. Enjoy this soup by itself or as a starter to a multi-course dinner.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium butternut squash, cubed into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 teaspoons grated peeled ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground curry powder
  • 1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups cups vegetable stock
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Dash hot sauce
  • 1 can white cannellini beans
  • 2 cups spinach

 Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 and spray a sheet pan with pan spray. Toss butternut squash in 1-tablespoon olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. Spread evenly on the sheet pan and roast until tender all the way through and beginning to brown on top (about 30 minutes).
  2. Saute onion and garlic in a large soup pot at medium-high heat until soft and translucent. Add the roasted butternut squash and the white wine and stir for about 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients except for the beans and spinach and simmer for 30-45 minutes. Puree in a blender or with an immersion blender.
  3. Pour back into the pot (if necessary) and put heat medium-low. Add beans and spinach. Stir until beans have heated up and spinach is wilted. Adjust seasoning as needed.

This recipe makes 8-10 1-cup servings.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 130

Fat: 2g

Saturated Fat: 0g

Carbohydrates: 22g

Fiber: 2g

Protein: 2g

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Green Soup

Green Soup

Each year the craze for green drinks, smoothies and juices seems to get ever more popular. There is no denying the health benefits of adding more green vegetables to the diet in the form of these smoothies/juices. However, there are other ways to consume these nutrients while still enjoying an actual meal. It may be not be the latest trend, but making a batch of soup is another avenue for ingesting an abundance of vegetables in one sitting.

This month’s recipe for green soup can be a great substitution for those that cannot (or will not) jump on the vegetable juice/smoothie wagon. Some might argue that heating the vegetables destroy some of the nutrients that are present in their raw state, however certain nutrients in vegetables are actually activated by heat. Besides, this soup recipe calls for certain antioxidant powerhouses such as garlic and onion that even the most hardcore health gurus would not blend up in their smoothie. In my opinion, the abundance of ingredients and the quick cooking time of this recipe result in a compromise of balanced nutrients.

This recipe calls for a number of optional ingredients. Also, any greens will work such as chard, escarole, bok choi, or arugula. You can prepare this one very simply, but the seasoned cook can play a bit and end up with an ethnic dish that is full of flavor. The miso paste for instance will add an extra bit of savory while still being pretty neutral, where some curry paste, a shot of fish sauce, and a handful of chopped cilantro will result in a taste of Southeast Asia. Another option might be a shot of balsamic vinegar and some chopped parsley if you are more partial to the Mediterranean. Experiment a bit and perfect a green soup of your liking.

The recipe yields about 2-3 quarts of soup. A 12oz cup is one serving.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive or coconut oil
  • 1 large onion (yellow or red), diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup chopped scallions
  • 2 large zucchini, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
  • curry powder or paste (optional)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed and chopped
  • 2 – 8oz bags of fresh spinach
  • 2 quarts vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons miso paste (optional)
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • dash of hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon soy or fish sauce (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley or cilantro (optional)

Preparation

  1. In a large soup pot, heat the oil at medium-high heat and add the next 5 ingredients. Stir frequently and cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic, ginger, curry powder/paste (if desired) and the tomatoes. Continue stirring frequently until vegetables are soft and fragrant, about another 3-5 minutes. Season with a good pinch of salt and pepper.
  3. Add the white wine and the greens and continue stirring until the greens begin to wilt. Add the stock and miso paste (if desired). Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, cover and leave it alone for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Add the lemon juice, hot sauce and other optional ingredients desired. Puree the soup in a blender or with an immersion stick blender. Adjust the seasoning as needed by adding more salt, pepper or anything else that may be lacking.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 120

Fat: 3g

Saturated Fat: 0g

Carbohydrates: 27g

Fiber: 6g

Protein: 4g

 

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