Very Quick Black Bean Salsa Soup

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This soup is really easy and fast to make. I love the combination of pureed and whole black beans. It’s thick and filling. I used hot salsa for a bit of a kick! We ate this with jalapeño cornbread, which I highly recommend.

Ingredients

  • Four 15oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 2 cups of your favorite salsa
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 1/2 bunch diced green onions, to serve
  • Plain yogurt or sour cream, to serve (optional)

Directions

Serves 4-6

  1. In a food processor, blend two cans of black beans with 1/4 cup of water.
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  2. In a pot, combine the mashed black beans, the two cans of unmashed beans, the salsa, the vegetable broth, and the chili powder.
  3. Bring the soup to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  4. Serve with green onions, along with a scoop or two of yogurt! Serve with jalapeño cornbread.
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Cayenne Cheddar Bread

I’ve only ever had cayenne cheddar bread at a restaurant called The Friendly Toast. I wanted to make my own since it is so, so delicious. I made a simple white bread and added cayenne and cheddar.

Ingredients

>>Yields two loaves

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 6 cups bread flour
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I used sharp)
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne

Directions

1) Add all the ingredients together in a food processor. (You could do this by hand.) Mix (or knead) until the dough is smooth and elastic.

2) In a greased bowl, leave the dough to rise until it is doubled in size, or about one hour. Cover the bowl with a slightly damp dish cloth so the dough doesn’t dry out.

3) Knead the dough briefly for a couple of minutes.

4) Split the dough in half, and put into to two 9×5 greased loaf pans. Let it rise until the dough has risen one inch above the pans. (It should only take around 30 minutes, but it took almost two hours for my dough to rise! I think it’s because my kitchen is a bit chilly and dough rises a lot faster when it’s warm.)

5) Preheat oven to 350°F.

6) Bake for approximately 30 minutes.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies with Carrots and Cranberries

>>Yields approximately three dozen

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups oats
  • 1 cup shredded carrots (one large carrot and one small carrot should be about right)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Directions

>>Preheat oven to 375 F

1) In a large bowl, combine the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar. Beat with an egg mixer.

2) Add the egg and beat until smooth.

3) Add the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and vanilla.

4) Using a spoon, stir in the oats, carrots, cranberries, and chocolate chips. Stir until they are well-integrated.

5) Form into cookies and put them on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 375°F for 10-12 minutes.

White Bean Soup

Adapted from Vegetarian: Over 300 Healthy and Wholesome Recipes Chosen From Around the World.

Ingredients

  • Three 15oz cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 celery rib, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

1) Puree 1/2 of the beans in a food processor, adding water (1 tablespoon at a time) if necessary, until the beans are a smooth puree.

2) In a large pot, combine the oil, onion, carrot, and celery. Stir until the veggies are coated in the oil. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until they are soft, but not mushy.

4) Add the tomatoes, garlic, and thyme. Cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring frequently.

5) Pour in the vegetable broth, followed by the beans and the bean puree. When you add the beans, the soup will turn bright white–which was a bit startling to me!–but it goes away. Add salt and pepper to taste.

6) Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes.

vegetable lentil soup with spiced yogurt

I’ve made this soup today for lunch. I have a sore throat and a bowl of this made it less scratchy. It felt so good going down! It has a little kick to it, and David loves the spiced yogurt. It’s filling and the colors are just so pretty.

Adapted from Veggie Food by Kay Scarlett

Ingredients

>>Serves 6-8

Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup dried lentils
  • 1lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 zucchini, cut into small pieces
  • 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 heaping cups of broccoli (cut into small florets)
  • 1/2 cup peas
  • 2 cups water (possibly more!)

Spiced Yogurt

  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt (you could use regular yogurt or sour cream, but Greek yogurt is the best!)
  • 1 clove garlic, diced
  • several tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
  • a few dashes of hot pepper sauce

Directions

1) Heat the oil in a saucepan, then add the garlic. Cook for a minute or two, stirring frequently..

2) Add the curry powder, cumin, and garam marsala, followed by the stock, lentils, and squash.

3) Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for approximately 20 minutes, or until the lentils are soft.

4)  Add the zucchini, tomatoes, broccoli, and 2 cups of water. If the soup is too thick, add more water until it’s the desired consistency. Simmer for 10 minutes.

5) Add the peas and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

6) To make the spiced yogurt, stir together the yogurt, cilantro, garlic, and hot pepper sauce.

7) Serve the soup with a spoonful of yogurt!

Coconut Soup

I based this off of four or five different recipes, plus what ingredients we had in the kitchen. It’s not a hearty, filling soup, but very flavorful! It’s also really quick and easy to make.

>>Serves three. Double (or triple!) for larger crowds, or if you’d like leftovers.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, cut into bite size slices
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 14oz package of firm or extra firm tofu, cut into small cubes
  • 2 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 14oz can of coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce (more if you like it spicy! you could put in red pepper flakes or Thai red curry paste, to taste, instead)
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons of lime juice, plus extra to serve
  • cilantro to garnish
  • also consider adding: ginger, garlic, basil, lemongrass, beansprouts… !

Directions

1) In a medium size pot heat the oil. Add the red pepper and onion, stirring until they are coated. If needed, add another tablespoon of oil. Cook until the veggies are soft, around 3-5 minutes.

2) Add the remaining ingredients except for the cilantro and lime juice (tofu, veggie broth, coconut milk, chili sauce, brown sugar, and peanut butter).

3) Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat. Stir until the peanut butter has dissolved. Simmer for eight minutes.

4) Add the lime juice and simmer for two more minutes.

5) Serve with cilantro, a slice of lime, and extra chili sauce, if desired.

Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

Adapted from AllRecipes.

>>Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 red bell peppers, sliced
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cumin
  • approximately 14 ounces chopped green chili peppers (I bought two 7oz cans; three 4oz cans would be okay too)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (28-32 ounces works great); you can add more broth if you like your soup thinner
  • 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15oz can of corn, drained
  • black pepper, to taste

Serve with:

  • lime slices
  • cilantro
  • avocado slices
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • tortilla chips

Directions

1) Combine the oil, red pepper, onion, garlic, and cumin in a large pot over medium heat. Stir for approximately five minutes, or until the vegetables are softened.

2) Add the remaining soup ingredients to the pot, except for the corn (green chili peppers, broth, tomatoes, beans, and black pepper). Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for approximately 20-25 minutes.

3) Add the corn and simmer for five more minutes.

4) Serve with cilantro, avocado, cheese, and tortilla chips. Squeeze a small wedge of lime over each bowl.

sweet potato & granny smith sandwich

I really like this sandwich because there’s a nice balance between sweet and tart. Unfortunately, sweet potatoes take awhile to cook, so you have to think about making this sandwich well before you start to feel hungry. By the time this was ready, I was starving. (And those who know me know that means grumpiness…)

Ingredients

>>Makes two sandwiches

  • 1/2 sweet potato
  • 1/2 onion, sliced (red onion is preferred, but I only had yellow and it was still delicious!)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 granny smith apple, sliced (I made cubes, but slices would make the sandwich easier to take a bit out of)
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • alfalfa sprouts
  • hummus
  • 4 slices of bread (I used whole wheat)

Directions

1) Preheat oven to 400 F. Wash the potato and pierce it with a fork in numerous spots. Place the sweet potato on a baking sheet and cook for 40-50 minutes (it could take even longer depending on the size — you’ll know it’s ready when a fork or knife can pretty easily cut into it).

2) Peel the sweet potato; the skin should come off easily. Cut the potato into small, bite size pieces.

3) In a large frying pan, heat the vinegar and brown sugar. Add the potato and onion. Cook until the onion is soft and caramelized.

4) Assemble your sandwiches! Spread the hummus, and add the avocado, sweet potato, onion, apple slices, and sprouts.

curried cauliflower & sweet potato soup

Adapted from Kitchen to Table.

>>Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces (keep this separate from the other head)
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into small pieces
  • 2 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons of curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • sea salt (to taste)
  • pepper (to taste)
  • cilantro (optional)
  • sour cream or plain yogurt (optional)

Directions

1) In a large pot, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and onion. Stir until the onion is soft, around 3-5 minutes.

2) Add the curry powder, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Stir until the onion and garlic are well-coated.

3) Add the vegetable stock and the one head of cauliflower pieces (reserve the 1/2 head of cauliflower pieces for later).

4) Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 25-30 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are soft.

5) Put the soup into a food processor (you may have to do this in two batches) or use an immersion blender. Puree the soup. If you think that the soup is took thick, you can add more broth or water 1/2 cup at a time, until it’s the desired consistency.

6) Pour the now pureed soup back into the pot.

7) Add the 1/2 head of cauliflower pieces to the pureed soup. Return to medium heat and cook until the cauliflower pieces are tender, around 10-15 minutes.

8) Serve with cilantro and sour cream or plain yogurt.