Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sweet and Savory Vegetable Soup

Sometimes I just can't stop myself.  I was watching the Today show last Monday and watched Chef Giada DeLaurentiis make Sweet and Savory Vegetable Dressing.  As she was adding apples, leeks and allspice to the already sauteed squash, carrots, and parsnips, I could nearly smell it through the television screen.  Then I thought of the large bag of carrots and about 10 leeks and  a few squash we still had from what Tom had harvested from our garden.  Voila!  I could use her combination of vegetables and spices to make another soup for my Thanksgiving meal.   This is creative cooking at its best, in my mind.  The resulting soup had a brand new combination of sweet and savory tastes, and topped with crumbled goat cheese, it was out of this world!   With the loss of varied textures and appearance in my restricted diet, new flavor combinations are heralded!  Today, I warmed up this soup for lunch and reveled in its great flavor once again. 

 For Giada's orginal recipe: 

3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 14 - 16 oz. butternut squash, halved, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 1/2 cups)
12 ounces medium carrots (about 4), peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
8 ounces medium parsnips (about 3) peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
2 cups thinly sliced leeks, cleaned (white and green parts only) (about 2 medium size leeks)
2 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch cubes  (about 2 cups)
3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1 teaspoon ground allspice  (I grated fresh allspice, so I used about 1/4 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
Grated zest from 1 large lemon (about 2 teaspoons)
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
4 oz. fresh goat cheese, coarsely crumbled, for garnish

Garden leeks

Heat olive oil in large non-stick skillet over medium high heat.  Add the squash, carrots and parsnips to the skillet and saute until the vegetables begin to soften, stirring frequently, about 15 minutes.  Add the apples and leeks to the same skillet and saute until the leeks are slightly softened, about 5 - 6 minutes.  Stir in lemon zest and allspice.  Add the vegetable broth and simmer till the vegetables are tender.  You may need to add a bit more broth to keep the vegetables covered with liquid while simmering.  Cool slightly and then puree with an immersion stick.  Season with salt and pepper.  Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with small bits of the goat cheese and a sprinkle of freshly grated allspice or nutmeg.  Be thankful!


Garden Carrots

Servings per recipe: 8
Serving Size: 1 cup
Calories: 181

Total Fat: 9 g
Cholesterol: 7 mg
Sodium:  217 mg 
Total Carbs:  25 g

Dietary Fiber: 6 g
Protein: 4 g