November 13, 2013
Sick = soup, always – right?
While I’m definitely not full blown sick, I have been feeling pretty drained and under the weather lately. I’ve been trying to keep up my workouts at a lower intensity and keep my body fueled with good healthy foods to fight off whatever it is that’s wrong with me (my money is on a Sinus Infection/Tooth Infection – yuck).
Yesterday was a particularly rough one and by the time I was home and had finished my workout, I had ZERO appetite. Not eating wasn’t an option, so instead I threw together this easy soup that reminded me of my “mom, can I have a bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup?” days. Salty, comforting and with a few extra healthy bits and pieces to satisfy my lifestyle.
I started with half a cube of Veggie broth bouillon into 2 cups of water and added some diced carrots and celery I had already cut up in the fridge. Next went half a package of pre-cubed tofu cubes, some freshly grated ginger, cayenne pepper and garlic powder, a trifecta of sick blasters! Once the veggies were nice and tender and the soup was ready to eat, I threw in a handful of torn up kale and let it steam a bit, to up the greens factor.
The result was cozy and comforting, salty and nourishing. Not too heavy, but still nutritious enough to satisfy. A big bowl of this would fill me up on a regular (feeling good) day, especially with the addition of some grains or noodles. But for now, it was perfect as was. Tonight, I’m feeling like a hungry beast, so I’m hoping a nice solid biceps/back workout will put me in the mood for some roasted acorn squash….get in mah bellay!
I’m off to the dentist tomorrow (I really hate the dentist…) to try and figure out if the tooth is the problem, or the sinuses are the problem. Chicken or the egg?
See also – go give my friend Dom some serious love over at his page. He just got back from running the NYC marathon. Major inspiration right there.
February 26, 2013
It’s no secret that I love my crockpot and last night’s soup did nothing to change my mind. However, it is a little more prep than normal involved. I came up with this idea after a serious hankering for some root veggies roasted with a healthy dose of Smoked Spanish Paprika. Normally I’d be perfectly content to toss the veggies with some pasta and call it a day. The problem, was that last night my husband needed a fuss free dinner and a clean kitchen. So a crockpot meal was in order. Besides, roasted veggies is a weekend meal in my book, since otherwise it would mean eating dinner at 10. Not really, but it would still make for a late night meal.
Instead of giving up on the idea, I went ahead with roasting the veggies on Sunday night, including 2 sweet potatoes, 3 large carrots, 1/2 medium celery root (peeled), 3 cloves of garlic, 1 small/medium onion, tossed in olive oil and smoked paprika. The next morning I threw them all into a crockpot with about 5 cups of water and half a veggie bouillon cube and let it cook away on low for the day. You wouldn’t need the crockpot either, you could absolutely roast the veggies and simmer in some veggie broth directly afterwards. For us, the crockpot was the way to go and when we got home, it smelled great as was, but didn’t look altogether appetizing and I already had my mind set on a bisque of sorts, so I used my immersion blender to whiz it up, adding in more water bits at a time (and a splash of almond milk, although I don’t think it needed it) until I got the right consistency. Alternatively, you could’ve thrown it into a blender in smaller batches and pureed it that way. The immersion blender is fast and easy and requires less transporting of the soup, which in my book = less mess and a happy husband.
To top of the soup I added in some more paprika (plus a garnish for my soup, I can’t help it, the stuff is addicting!), a touch of cinnamon and a splash of Rye (Bourbon would do the same thing). We served it with a side of homemade molasses cornbread, where I replaced the sugar (we have none in the house right now) with molasses. It had the perfect amount of sweet, without being overly so. Slathered with some earthbalance, it was a proud moment for me when I got the “this is pretty good” nod from B. Baking without sugar in the house has been an adventure to say the least, but its just not something we’re looking to add to the grocery list right now unless we have a reason to. Saving money can be so fun :-p Actually, this non-sugar thing has been a fun experiment, to see what it is we really need in order to satisfy our “sweet cravings”, which happen few and far between to begin with. I have to say that the molasses served its purpose well and may be a future replacement for most cornbread options from hereon out in our house!
Life can be stressful sometimes, especially on a Monday after a sleepless weekend, but bowls of soup like this are a nice way escape it for a while. 🙂
If you try it let me know and enjoy!