Shalom Life | October 21, 2014

The Nosh Pit: Vegan Soups and Stews

What's better than comforting and healthy soups and stews on these damp and rainy days?

By: Sara Torvik

Published: October 20th, 2014 in Culture » Food » Recipes

The Nosh Pit: Vegan Soups and Stews

It could get messy, but it will always be memorable. Every week in the Nosh Pit, we’ll lead the gathering of an impassioned group of foodies, offering delectable dishes, seasonal treats, and other goodies to nosh upon.

We’ll introduce the timely scenario – what to bring to an obligatory sports party or contribute to a spring picnic--and share some auspicious recipes. Spice up a soiree, diversify your dinner, or help convince those reluctant souls that ‘soy substitute’ is not synonymous with ‘stale.’

Recipes are best shared, passed from one sated soul to the next, with everyone adding just their own flair, and creating endless yummy possibilities. At a concert, people shed inhibition and share passion in a moment of synergy and excitement; they will do the same in the Nosh Pit, directing their unparalleled enthusiasm towards food.

Vegan Soups and Stews

The weather is getting cold, and what better way to warm yourself up than with a hot, hearty bowl of soup. These recipes are perfect for fall, and they are healthy too, with lots of fresh and delicious vegetables in every bite. Perfect for people who are vegans, vegetarians or just trying to cut back on their meat intake.

10 Spice Vegetable Soup from Oh She Glows

Ingredients:

For the soup:
  • 3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked
  • 6 cups vegetable broth, divided
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 sweet or yellow onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped sweet potato, regular potato, or butternut squash
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 (28-ounce/796-mL) can diced tomatoes, with their juices (or sub with fresh tomatoes - see blog post for my how-to)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-1 1/2 tablespoons Homemade 10-Spice Blend (recipe follows), to taste
  • Fine-grain sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 to 2 cups baby spinach or destemmed torn kale leaves
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas or other beans, drained and rinsed (kidney beans are fun too)
Homemade 10-Spice Blend (makes 1/2 cup):
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fine grain sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Directions:

  1. Place cashews in a bowl and add enough water to cover. Soak the cashews overnight, or for at least 2 hours. Drain and rinse the cashews.
  2. In a blender, combine the soaked and drained cashews with 1 cup of vegetable broth and blend on the highest speed until smooth. Set aside.
  3. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Season generously with Herbamare or sea salt.
  4. Add the carrots, bell pepper, potato, celery, and diced tomatoes with their juices, the remaining 5 cups broth, the cashew cream, and 1-1.5 tablespoons of 10-spice blend. Stir well to combine . Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low. Season with salt and black pepper and add the bay leaves.
  5. Simmer the soup, uncovered, for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender. Season with salt and black pepper. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, stir in the spinach/kale and drained beans.
  6. To freeze, ladle the soup into containers (leaving 1-inch for expansion), cool slightly, secure lid and place in the freezer for up to 6 weeks.

Tips: 1) If you don’t wish to make the 10-Spice Blend, feel free to use your favorite store-bought Cajun or Creole seasoning mix and add to taste. 2) You will have leftover spice blend. Store it in a container and keep it handy anytime you want to spice up a dish! It's great for pasta, soup, tofu seasoning, stir-fry, and more. 3) When thawed, this soup's broth looks a bit grainy, but rest assured when it's heated up again it will return to its former smoothness.

Spiced Red Lentil, Tomato, and Kale Soup from Oh She Glows

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp coconut oil (or other oil)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 & 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp smoked sweet paprika, to taste
  • 1/8th tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 14-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 5-6 cups vegetable broth, more if desired
  • 1 cup red lentils, rinsed and drained
  • fine grain sea salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 handfuls torn kale leaves or spinach

1. In a large pot, sauté the onion and garlic in oil for about 5-6 minutes over medium heat. Add in the celery and sauté for a few minutes more.

2. Stir in the bay leaf and the spices (cumin, chili powder, coriander, paprika, cayenne). You can add half the spices and add more later if you prefer.

3. Stir in the can of tomatoes (including juice), broth, and lentils. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and then simmer, uncovered, for about 20-25 minutes, until lentils are tender and fluffy.

4. Stir in kale or spinach and season to taste adding more spices if you wish.

Tomato Bean Stew with Spinach and Marinated Red Peppers from Treehugger

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp fresh thyme
1 can tomatoes, roughly chopped
3/4 cup marinated red peppers, roughly chopped
1/2 cup pitted olives
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 bunch spinach, washed and chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat olive oil in large pot until it shimmers. Add onion and cook until translucent about 5 minutes. Add garlic and thyme and cook until garlic is golden, about 5 minutes.

2. Add tomatoes and red peppers and pitted olives. Stir and cover stew and cook for 15 or 20 minutes to allow flavours to meld.

3. Add beans and spinach and cook until beans are warmed through and spinach is cooked, about 5 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper.

Find more yummy and healthy vegan soups and stews on the next page!

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