Archive for the 'Soups' Category

Mango Gazpacho From The 30 Minute Vegan

Mango Gazpacho From The 30 Minute Vegan

Since there’s still a lot of tomatoes hanging around on this warm Autumn day, I decided to try the Live Mango Gazpacho from The 30-Minute Vegan. An interesting twist to the chilled raw vegetable soup, the mango adds a refreshing sweetness to the spiciness of the gazpacho.

As for the time, it took me 50 minutes to cut and chop up everything and I only made half of the recipe (ok, so I’m a slow cutter). And then 30 more minutes for the soup to chill.

But hey, after all that chopping, I got to kick back and enjoy a light, healthy meal without heating up the kitchen. I like how the cookbook includes a selection of live recipes. Of course, gazpacho by its nature is already raw but I’m looking forward to trying some of the other raw recipes.

Mango Gazpacho From The 30 Minute Vegan

Live Mango Gazpacho
Serves 4

3 cups mango, cut into small cubes (about 3 medium-size mangoes)
2 cups tomato, chopped small (about 3 medium-size tomatoes)
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped small
1 teaspoon seeded and minced jalapeño (optional)
1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon chile powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
1 tablespoon minced fresh Italian parsley

1. Mix all of the ingredients together well in a large bowl.
2. Transfer 2 cups of the mixture to a blender and blend on high speed for 20 seconds and return to the bowl. Mix, and if desired, chill for 30 minutes, otherwise serve immediately.

Excerpted from the book The 30-Minute Vegan by Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray, published by Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright © 2009. www.dacapopresscookbooks.com

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Baked Tempura From The 30 Minute Vegan

Roasted Asparagus Soup From The Vegan Table

Roasted Asparagus Soup From The Vegan Table

In reviewing The Vegan Table by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, I was immediately struck by the amount of photos in the book. I have quite a few vegan cookbooks without any pictures at all. I love looking at pictures of food, especially if I’m attempting to make said food.

Roasted Asparagus Soup From The Vegan Table

Having said that, I of course, decided to make the Roasted Asparagus Soup with Thyme which had no picture. I just had to do something with all that asparagus in the fridge. It was delicious, creamy and very easy to make.

Although I was a little surprised that the recipe called for only the asparagus tips to be roasted. Then again, I’m biased towards roasting lots of veggies and had to refrain myself from eating all of the tips while the soup was cooking.

The Vegan Table is organized around various entertaining menus, from cozy romantic dinners to casual dining, holidays and special occasions. Besides the wide range of recipes, there’s also helpful tips and interesting tidbits. A fine addition to any kitchen library, whether for a single recipe or a complete menu plan.

Related Links
Check out The Vegan Table for yourself at your local bookstore or at The Vegan Table. To learn more about Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, check out her blog here.

Berry Soup With Cake Croutons

Berry Soup With Cake Croutons

With all of the amazing berries hitting the farmer’s market lately, I feel like I should do something more than just eating them out of the carton. Perhaps a soup would be nice.

On my first try, I plopped yogurt in and it came out way too much like a smoothie. I don’t want to be eating a smoothie out of a soup bowl with a spoon, I want to clug-a-lug it out of a glass.

Back to the kitchen for version 2.0 – I’m looking for a cool, refreshing and brightly colored soup. So no yogurt and basically just berries this time.

Berries are so good right now, they don’t really need much else. For an extra fancy treat, top with mint and cake croutons ( I used Amy’s frozen Orange Cake, no need to bake in a hot kitchen, just defrost).

Berry Soup With Cake Croutons
Serves 2

1 pint ripe fresh strawberries
1/3 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon agave nectar or to taste
2 sprigs fresh mint, julienned
2 slices cake, cut into cubes

Blend together the berries, orange juice and agave nectar until smooth. Chill until ready to serve. To serve, spoon into shallow bowls and top with the mint and cake croutons. Serve immediately.

no croutons required

No Croutons Required is a monthly food blogging event hosted by Lisa’s Kitchen and Tinned Tomatoes. May’s theme is berries in a soup or salad. No croutons required but this dessert soup has it and is my contribution to the event.

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup

I had a butternut squash languishing in the refrigerator for weeks before I finally got around to cooking it. Poor little thing, it sat in the fridge for far too long. I had to hack off the moldy parts but the rest of it was still good. I was surprise the squash lasted as long as it did, what a trooper.

I made a rich, creamy butternut squash soup, with a nice, spicy kick from the fresh ginger and cayenne pepper. So yummy for the end of winter, so happy for the beginning of spring.

Butternut Squash Soup
Makes a generous 2 cups

1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 small onion, minced
1 med carrot, sliced
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into cubes
1/2″ fresh ginger, minced
2 cups hot water
1 cube vegan vegetable bouillon dissolved in the water
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 heaping tablespoons silken tofu
1 stalk green onion, chopped
1-2 pieces baked tofu, cubed

In a large pot, heat the oil until hot, add the onions and saute until translucent. Add the squash and carrots and saute for about 30 seconds. Add the water, ginger and spices.

Bring to a boil, cover and turn down to low. Cook for about 18 minutes or until the squash is soft. Add the tofu and puree until smooth. Ladle into bowls and garnish with green onions and baked tofu croutons if desired. Serve immediately.

Asian-Styled Seitan and Vegetable Stew

Asian-Styled Seitan and Vegetable Stew

Last week, we finally got some much needed rain here in Northern California – perfect weather for making a stew. Something that’s hearty and full of flavor, something warm and comforting, something with star anise, perhaps?

I love the very distinct licorice taste and aroma of star anise, it’s one of the very few spices used in Chinese cooking. You may recognize the taste as it’s the primary flavoring in Chinese 5-spice powder.

Normally used in slow cooked meat dishes, I decided to try star anise with seitan and root vegetables in a kind of red-cooked dish. Red cooking or Chinese stewing is a Chinese cooking technique that turns ingredients a deep red-brown color by braising in a dark soy sauce flavored broth.

With no meat, it cooks fairly quickly, basically it’s done when the veggies are soft. Makes for a quick, satisfying weekday meal and like most stews, it’s even better the next day when the flavors combine even more.

Asian-Styled Seitan and Vegetable Stew

Asian-Styled Seitan and Vegetable Stew
Serves 2

2-3 pieces whole star anise
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon water
Salt and pepper to taste
Dash of cinnamon
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2″ piece of fresh ginger, minced
8 ounces seitan chunks
3 medium red potatoes
1 medium carrot
1/2 medium daikon
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 green onion stalk, chopped

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl, mix well and set aside. Peel and slice the carrot at a diagonal, peel and cut the potatoes and daikon into 1″ chunks, add to the sauce bowl along with the seitan. Mix, making sure everything is well covered in the sauce.

Heat a wok until it’s hot, add the oil, swirl to coat the wok. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for a few seconds. Add the bowl ingredients, give it a few quick tosses and add water to just barely covering. Cover and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the water is absorbed and the vegetables are done, about 20 – 25 minutes. To serve, discard the star anise pieces and garnish with the chopped green onions.

Savory Tang Yuan

Savory Tang Yuan

As a symbol of family unity and harmony, tang yuan is traditionally served around Winter Solstice, right around the time when families get together for the holidays.

The little round dumplings are made of glutinous rice flour and can be white or colored, sweet or savory. They don’t really taste like much, except for what it’s cooked with. The texture is smooth and a little chewy.

It’s funny to look back at my first post about yuan, when I first started up the blog. Last year, I had cut the daikon and tried my hand at making yuan. This year, I got demoted to just peeling the daikon and cleaning the mushrooms. But I don’t mind as no one can cook like Mom can.

And this year, I finally managed to get down my Mom’s recipe, adjusted to be vegan of course.

Savory Tang Yuan
Serves 2

Stock
5 cups vegetable stock or water
3 cloves garlic, smashed
Garlic salt to taste
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 medium sized daikon, peeled and julienned

In a large pot, add the first four ingredients and bring to a boil, then add the daikon. Bring to a boil again and reduce the heat to low and let it simmer while you prepare the rest of the soup.

To make the yuan
1 16 ounce bag glutinous rice flour
1 1/2 cups water

Pour the bag of rice flour onto a clean smooth surface. Make a well in the center and add the water a little bit at a time to the center, mixing the flour with the water. Save a little bit of the flour to use for dusting.

Knead the dough mixture until soft and smooth and the dough is well-mixed. Flour the work surface and hands. Twirl the dough between the hand into a log shape, break off about an 1/2″ size chunk and roll between the palms to make it into a ball shape.

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the yuans, a few at a time, do not overcrowd the pot. Bring to a boil, when the yuans float to the top about 4-5 minutes, take the yuans out.

Finishing the soup
2 cups napa cabbage, julienned
3-4 dried chinese mushrooms, soaked until soft and sliced
3 1/2 ounces veggie meat
1 green onion, chopped
1 sprig cilantro, chopped

To the stock, add the napa cabbage and mushrooms, cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the veggie meat. Add the yuan and bring to boil. Serve, garnish with greens onions and cilantro.

Vegetable Chowder In Mini Sourdough Bread Bowl

Vegetable Chowder In Mini Sourdough Bread Bowl

Once upon a time, in the very distant past, I tried soup in a bread bowl. It seemed a little weird to me back then.

Do you eat the bowl or not?

I think I tried to eat the whole thing but it was way too much, I’m sure I didn’t even come close to finishing it. It just seemed like such a waste of food. I haven’t tried it since.

With the upcoming cooler weather, I feel like giving it a try again. But this time, instead of a giant bread bowl, why not a cute miniature one?

Besides the large loaves of sourdough bread at the bakery, now there’s also small and medium sizes. Get whatever size you like, the smaller ones for an appetizer, the medium ones for a bigger serving.

Vegetable Chowder In Mini Sourdough Bread Bowl

Inspired by VeganDad‘s post on Mixed Vegetable Chowder, I adapted my usual corn chowder to include different vegetables. It’s got a slightly different taste and flavor yet it’s still comfortingly familiar.

Vegetable Chowder In Mini Sourdough Bread Bowl
Serves 2 – 4

2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 small white onion, chopped
1 small leek, sliced
1 medium carrot, sliced
2 medium red potatoes, cubed
1 cup vegetable stock
1 cup soymilk
1 garlic clove, minced
6 fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced
2 medium or 4 small sourdough bread loaves or rolls
Cayenne pepper to taste

In a large pot, heat 1 teaspoon of the oil until hot, add the onions and leeks, sauté until translucent. Add the carrots and potatoes, sauté for a few minutes. Add the vegetable stock and cover. Bring to a boil and cook over low to medium heat for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a wok until hot, add the remaining oil. Add the garlic and mushrooms and sauté until cooked. Set aside.

Add the mushrooms and soymilk to the soup and simmer for 5 minutes. Puree 3/4 of the soup in a blender, return to the pot, and mix well.

Slice off the top of the bread and hollow out the inside, saving the bread for another use. Ladle the soup into the bread bowl and top with cayenne pepper.

no croutons required

No Croutons Required is a monthly food blogging event hosted by Lisa’s Kitchen and Tinned Tomatoes. October’s theme is hearty vegetarian soups that will warm the body and satisfy a hungry tummy. In my book bowl, that’s chowder and my contribution to the event.

Rice Noodle Soup

Rice Noodle Soup

This is not an authentic Vietnamese pho soup nor is it a traditional Chinese soup. What is it then? It’s my interpretation of the two meeting in a tasty bowl.

Like those old Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup commercials where the two ingredients collide and it taste great. But instead of chocolate and peanut butter, it’s a delicious blend of Vietnamese seasonings/garnishes and Chinese ingredients.

I use fresh flat rice noodles (ho fun) usually seen in Chinese stir-fry dishes. Made from rice flour, wheat starch and water, they’re actually great in soups and feels more substantial than the thinner types of rice noodles. If you can’t find them fresh, dried rice noodles can also be used.

Rice Noodle Soup
Serves 2

Soup Base
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 serrano chile pepper, thinly sliced crosswise
3-4 fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced
1/2 ” piece of ginger, sliced
1 clove garlic, smashed and roughly chopped
4 cups water
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Salt

1/2 pound fresh thick rice noodles
10 small tofu puffs, can be substituted with baked tofu
1/2 pound Bloomsdale spinach or 2 cups sliced baby bok choy
1 lime, cut into wedges
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped

If the rice noodles were refrigerated, they may be stuck together in a large block. Gently separate the noodles pieces into smaller pieces. It doesn’t have to be down to each individual piece as they’ll separate more when they cook.

Heat a wok until hot, add the oil and swirl to coat. Add the chile pepper and stir for a few seconds. Add the mushrooms, ginger and garlic, stir-fry for about a minute. Add the water, soy sauce and salt to taste, bring to a boil.

Add the rice noodles, when it comes to a boil, add the tofu puffs and spinach. Cook until the noodles are soft about 1-2 minutes more. Divide between two bowls and garnish with the cilantro, basil, and mint as desired. Serve immediately with the lime wedges to be squeezed into the soup to taste.

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