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Lettuce and chard soup

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Do you have a head of lettuce but you’re bored of salads? Is it summer, but you feel like soup, maybe a cold soup, something light, refeshing? Do you want your kids to eat their greens, but they won’t touch salad or spinach or chard or kale? Try this summery refeshing soup made with yougurt. I don’t know where it originates, but  I used to eat as a child in Romania, during the spring or summer when people have loads of lettuce in their gardens and can’t have any more salad! The traditional recipe is made with lettuce, but I included chard as well, in order to add more nutritious value, and also because I love chard in general. Feel free to try other greens if you feel like experimenting: spinach, kale or mustard greens. The soup is thickened traditionally with thick sour cream and eggyolk, but for a healthier and lighther version I’ve used yogurt instead of sour cream. I’ve used bacon, as it is usually made in Romania, but you can skip the bacon. I’ve also used ginger in this recipe, which is my own thing, not at all Romanian or Eastern European or french, but it gave the soup a great kick.

Ingredients (for 4 people):

one head of lettuce

3-4 leaves of chard

one big onion

4-6 head of garlic

one spoon of chopped ginger

fresh parsley and dill (dry if fresh is not available)

one small yogurt container

vegetable broth (or not)

olive oil

sea salt

pepper

one egg

juice of one lemon

 

Directions:

Chop the onion and the bacon, and put them in a pan with some sunflower or coconut oil , and sautee them for 1-2 minutes, stirring ocasionally. Add the chopped garlic and ginger and continue cooking for a few more minutes, until all the flavours come out.

Pour the vegetable broth over. You can also use water instead, the flavour will be stronger with the vegetable broth of course, but it should be fine with water as well, especially if you use bacon.

Allow to boil for a few minutes.

In the meanitme wash the lettuce and the chard, and chop them in thin long strips.

 

Separate the eggwhite from the eggyolk.

Add the eggwhite to the soup while the soup is boiling, and do not stir. Leave it for a minute or so, and only then, lightly stir, so that it breaks into pieces but it won’t completely dissapear in the soup.

Add the lettuce and the chard, and boil on low temeprature for about 8-10 minutes. turn off the fire and let the soup cool down a bit.

In a bowl, mix the yogurt with the eggyolk and the lemon juice. Do this right before serving.

Pour it into the warm (not hot ) soup while mixing. Turn the fire back on and heat the soup up to boiling point, but don’t really let the soup boil again.  Sprinckle some fresh parsley and dill on top and serve.

The soup can also be served cold.

 

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pumpkin-apple-mango soup

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Ingredients:

one big onion

half small pumpkin or one small squash

peeled washed and cubed

two small apples peeled and cubed

3-5 cloves of garlic

half mango peeled washed and cubed

vegetable or chicken broth

pinch of sea salt

olive oil

Directions:

slice the onion, saute it in some olive oil until golden brown. Add the squash, apples, mango, garlic and salt, and saute for about 5 more minutes and then add the chicken broth. Boil on low heat until everything is soft. Let it cool down and then blend it. Add some fresh parsley and black pepper if you wish. Reheat before serving.

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Cabbage and spinach soup

Goes well with cold winter weather. Easy, simple, quick to make.

Ingredients: half small cabbage, four handfuls of small spinach leaves, one small tomato, paprika spice, one onion, 4-5 cloves garlic. Serves 2-3 people

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Chop the cabbage, wash the spinach. In a pan add some olive oil, chopped onion and garlic, paprika and cayenne pepper, and sizzle just for a few minutes, till the onion is golden and translucent. Add the cabbage and a few spoons of water, the hopped tomato, cover and let it sizzle for a few more minutes, checking and stirring occasionally, till the cabbage is soft and has reduced in size. Add water to cover the cabbage, and add the spinach leaves as well. Cover and let boil for 5 more minutes. Add some fresh herbs such as parsley, cilantro or thyme. Can be served with one teaspoon of sour cream.

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Spicy indian bean soup

This soup can be made with chicken, or vegan.

Ingredients: two potatoes, one onion, one tomato, one chicken thy – optional, 3-5 mushrooms – optional, 1 carrot 2 cups boiled beans, sea salt, coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric, cayenne pepper and cinnamon, olive oil. About one liter water.

If you choose to make it with chicken, boil one thy of chicken into a pot with some salt till the meat gets soft and it almost falls off the bone. Keep adding water as the chicken keeps boiling and there’s less water in the pot. Take the meat out of the pot, separate it from the bone, cut it in small pieces and add it back to the broth.

Add two potatoes cut into big chunks, one sliced carrot, one chopped onion , a few cloves of garlic, grated ginger and bring to boil. Boil till the potato is almost soft, about 10 min. Add one tomato sliced small, a few crimini or portabello mushrooms, coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric, cayenne pepper and cinnamon.

If the soup is vegan, start with the vegetables (potato, carrot, onion…) in water instead of chicken broth and the rest is all the same.

Add one or two spoons of olive oil.  Add 2 cups of pre-boiled rinsed red beans or white beans. Cook for 10 more minutes. Serve hot, garnished with fresh parsley, yogurt or sour cream.

Feel free to use other veggies.  For example you can skip the carrot, or the mushrooms. You can use peas or cauliflower.

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warming romanesco brocolli soup

This is a very easy quick soup to make that will warm you upon a cold winter day. if you don’t have romanesco broccoli, you can use regular broccoli, or cauliflower.

Ingredients:  half romanesco broccoli or a big full cup of broccoli florets. Turmeric, sea salt,olive oil, one cup pre-boiled organic beans, one potato, one onion, cayenne pepper.

Chop the onion, place in a pan with some olive oil and sizzle just a minute or so.  Peel and cut the potato, place over the onion, add water, bring to boil, let boil till almost soft. in the meantime clean and cut romanesco broccoli, and when the potato is almost done, add it to the soup. Add one cayenne pepper or some cayenne powder, depending on how spicy you want to be. Add some sea salt, a cup of pre-boiled beans, and boil about 5 minutes till the broccoliromanesca 1 is soft but not too soft. Serve hot.

serves 2 or 3 people