Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Soup

Garden Swiss Chard and kale

My culinary confidence got a real boost last week as I listened to Anna Thomas being interviewed on The Splendid Table on Minnesota Public Radio.   She was describing her love of "healthy, green soups" and went on to describe her Kale and Sweet Potato Soup.  Wow!  I love green soups, too, and had devised my own Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Soup a couple of years ago.  I thought I had posted it here, but as I was looking through my posts, I realized that I hadn't.  It is one of my favorite soups and my friend Tracy made a large batch of it for me last fall when I had an abundance of Swiss Chard in the garden and not much energy to do anything with it.  She froze several servings of it for me to use as needed.   

I digress.  As I started saying at the beginning of this post, greens and sweet potatoes are an unusual but incredibly tasty pairing.  And I have also substituted kale for Swiss Chard in my soup.  My soup creation is much less complex than the Kale and Sweet Potato Soup by Anna Thomas, but I was headed in the right direction.  Here is a link to her recipe on The Splendid Table website:

In 2009, Anna Thomas published a cookbook, Love Soup.   I wish I had thought of that name for my recipes!  It says so much about the wholesome ingredients, the final product that nurtures the soul as much as the body, and my never-ending desire for soup.  She is also the author of The Vegetarian Epicure, and she has another cookbook coming soon.    

Sweet Potato-Swiss Chard Soup cooking
I couldn't resist making a small batch of her Kale and Sweet Potato soup yesterday and it was delicious with her addition of leeks, cumin, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper. I didn't have any green onions or cilantro that were listed as ingredients, but it was still tasty.  

The recipe I have listed below is for my original Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Soup.  Easy, nutritious and apparently a culinary trend.   

2 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 cups peeled and cubed sweet potatoes
3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
4 cups chopped Swiss Chard or other greens such as kale or turnip greens
Reduced-fat feta cheese for garnish (not included in nutritional analysis)

Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook until soft.  Add the broth and sweet potato, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until sweet potato cubes are tender, about 20 minutes. Add the chopped Swiss Chard and cook until tender and wilted, about 10 minutes.  Puree with an immersion blender.
Garnish with feta cheese if desired.  

Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Soup

Nutrition : (Per Calorie Count analysis)                
Servings per recipe: 5                                                    
Serving Size: About 1 cup                                 
Calories: 79                                                                             
Total Fat: 6 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg                                      
Sodium: 106 mg
Total Carbs: 5 g
Dietary Fiber: 1 g
Protein: 3 g

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