Spinach and mushroom soup

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Cold winter evenings call for hot and hearty soups with a side good nutrition thrown in!   I had some spinach and mushrooms which are good for soups separately on their own.  I decided to experiment and combine both.  The result was a yummy soup which was loved by the whole family! Makes about 4 servings.

What you need:

1.5-2 cups chopped spinach

1 medium chopped onion

1 tsp ginger finely chopped

2-3 gloves garlic chopped

200 gm mushrooms sliced

1 1/2 cups milk

2 cups water

1 tbsp cream

1 tbsp butter

1 tbsp wholewheat flour 

salt to taste

fresh ground black pepper

1 tsp coriander leaves finely chopped

How to make:

  1.  Boil spinach in a little water, along with chopped onion and ginger (you can also do this in a microwave) till the spinach leaves are soft.  Cool and then grind in a blender.  Keep aside.
  2. In a pan, add butter and melt.  Now saute the chopped garlic till it begins to boil.  Now throw in the sliced mushrooms and stir till the mushrooms start to release water.
  3. Add the flour and saute for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Add the black pepper and saute for half a minute.  Then add the spinach mixture and stir well.
  5. Add the water followed by milk.  Mix well and add the salt.  Keep on low heat and let the soup simmer till it starts to thicken. (about 5 mins)
  6. Add the cream and the coriander leaves and stir well.
  7. Serve hot.  Enjoy!

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Sprouts and Veggie Soup

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Sprouts are a super super food which I would love to include more in my diet.  They are loaded with vitamins, minerals, proteins and antioxidants.  My usual way to eat them is to add them to salads. So when I came across this awesome soup recipe using sprouts and a whole lot of healthy vegetables, I couldn’t wait to try it.  This powerhouse soup was delicious and nourishing.  I realized sprouts are extremely versatile and can be added to stir fry veggies, in soups, in salads, in sandwiches and even as pizza topping!

What you need:

1 cup sprouts (I used both moong and chana sprouts)

1/2 cup cabbage, finely chopped

1/4 cup chopped beans

1/4 cup chopped bell pepper

1/4 cup grated carrot

1 onion finely chopped

2 garlic pod, crushed

1 green chilli finely chopped (optional)

1 tbsp chopped coriander

2 tbspn chopped paneer for garnishing

½ tsp sugar

½ tsp oil

1 ½ tsp cornflour

2 tbsp chilli sauce

Salt to taste

Water as required

How to make:

1.  Wash the sprouts and boil them in 4 cups of water.  Drain and keep aside. Do not throw the water.

2.  Mix the cornflour with 1/4 cup water and keep aside.

3.  Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan.  Add garlic and then the onion and stir for a minute.

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4.  Add the sprouts, cabbage, carrot, capsicum and beans and mix well for 3-4 minutes.  Add the green chilli and chopped coriander and mix well.
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5.  Add the stock (the water in which the sprouts were boiled).  Let it come to a boil and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
6.  Add the salt, chilli sauce, sugar and cornflour paste.  Mix well and let it boil for another 3-4 minutes.
7.  Garnish with some paneer pieces and serve hot with bread sticks.
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Chicken and vegetable soup

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The cold Delhi November evening called for a warm, nourishing soup!  I explored Khan Market for the ingredients and to my pleasant surprise, I found many shops selling groceries which I was used to in America.  I quickly picked up everything I needed and was able to make this super healthy and tasty soup for dinner.  

What you need :

Serves 4

2 chicken breasts cubed

2 carrots chopped

1/2 cup mushrooms sliced

2 celery chopped

1 cup spinach chopped

1 onion sliced

2 cloves garlic minced

1 tsp ginger minced

Salt and pepper to taste

Butter 1 tbsp

5 cups chicken broth

How to make:

1.  Heat a pot and melt butter.  Add the chicken pieces and stir well with a little bit of salt.  Saute till the chicken changes color and becomes a little tender.  (About 5 – 7 mins).

2.  Now add the garlic and saute for a minute.  Then add the onion and stir till it turns pink.

3.  Throw in the rest of the vegetables and stir well for a couple of minutes.

4.  Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes.

5.  Serve hot with a crusty roll of bread.

Spicy Tomato Tortilla soup

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I love tortilla soup and decided to try out this easy, vegetarian version.  My friend gave me some organic tomatoes from her garden and I used these as the base for the soup.  I was too lazy to bake or fry the corn tortillas and ended up using Trader Joes healthy quinoa and blackbean tortilla chips!  The soup was flavorful and nutritious and was a hit with the family!

What you need:

2 cups chopped tomatoes

1 small onion chopped

1 tsp minced garlic

1 jalapeno finely chopped

1 tsp butter

1 tbsp sour cream

1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro

1/2 cup tortilla chips broken into small bits

1/4 tsp red chilli flakes

Salt to taste

How to make:

1.  Puree the chopped tomatoes and keep aside.

2.  Heat butter in a pot and add the onion.  Saute till it turns pink.  Add the jalapeno and stir well.

3.  Add the tomato puree and season with salt and chilli flakes and mix well.  Simmer for 5-7 minutes.  Add in the sour cream and half the cilantro and stir well.

4.  Garnish the soup with the tortilla chips and the remaining cilantro.  Serve hot!

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Corn and dill soup

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This winter looks to have no end in sight!  The cold and snowy days need warm comfort food to make us feel better.  I have been on a soup binge in these frigid temperatures.  Today’s soup was a quick and easy corn and dill soup.  Dill adds a distinct and aromatic flavor to this no fuss soup.  It belongs to the same family as parsley, bay leaf and cumin and contains substantial amounts of iron, manganese and calcium. It also contains flavonoids which are powerful antioxidants with anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties.

What you need:

1 celery stem finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic finely chopped

1 carrot finely chopped

2 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill

1 tin of cream style corn

1 tsp curry powder

1 tbsp butter

salt to taste

How to make:

1.  Melt butter in a pan on a low flame.

2.  Add the chopped celery, garlic and carrot and saute for a few minutes.

3.  Now stir in the cream style corn, chopped dill(reserve a few leaves for garnish), salt and curry powder.  Add 4 cups of water and simmer for 10 minutes.

4.  Garnish the soup with dill leaves and serve hot.

Butternut squash soup

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The day was looking gloomy with rains lashing outside…… a good day to make soup.  The orange superfood butternut squash seemed the perfect vegetable to puree into a soup!  It’s rich in dietary fiber, potassium, folic acid, magnesium, and omega 3’s.  Its orange hue comes from carotenoids which help to protect against heart disease and some cancers.  I added a couple of green chillies to the squash while cooking which gave the soup a slight kick!  

What you need:

1/2 onion chopped

2 cloves of garlic

2 green chillies

1/2 butternut squash peeled, seeded and cubed

4 cups of chicken stock(or vegetable stock)

1 tbsp butter

1/2 tsp cumin powder

1 tbsp light cream

Salt and pepper to taste

How to make:

1.  Melt the butter in a large pot.  Add garlic chopped, onion and green chillies and stir and cook till soft (about 3 minutes).

2.  Add the squash and chicken stock; bring to a simmer and cook until the squash is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.   Season with cumin powder and salt and remove from heat.

3.  You can puree the soup in the pot itself by using a stick blender or puree the soup in the mixie in batches.  Put the pot back on the stove and stir in the cream and add pepper.  Serve hot.