Thursday, October 6, 2011

Autumn Abundance Soup

I love autumn produce! In my part of the world, greens, root vegetables, squash, eggplant, carrots, etc. are in season and they are overfilling our produce bins. We receive a hefty share from our mini-CSA (thank you MJ and Wendy!) with greens galore and beets, but today we'll talk about the squash (and one lonely turnip in with all the turnip greens). I made this soup for the Vegan Meet-Up this weekend and just had to have more on Monday. Several people asked for the recipe so I'll share it with you. It is inspired by Susan's Sunny Summer Squash Soup (thanks, Susan, you are often my inspiration and your blog is beyond compare). Over the years, we've enjoyed this soup many times. I've made changes to her stellar soup depending on my mood or what is in my produce bin. Here is my latest version, just in time for fall.
Some of the lovely squash from our CSA. I used three or four in the soup this weekend, three Monday, and I might just make the last couple into soup as well.
Produce waiting to be made into a soup full of fall flavors.
Autumn Abundance Soup

2 teaspoons olive oil (optional)
1 large onion (peeled and diced)
2 hot peppers (sliced and de-seeded, I'm not super careful about the seeds since we like them)
4 - 6 cloves garlic (minced)
6 cups of water
1 1/2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon (look for the vegan logo, we like the organic vegetable base)
3 medium sized yellow or green squash washed and sliced
2 medium sized sweet potatoes peeled and diced
1 turnip (optional, but go ahead!) peeled and diced
2 carrots peeled and diced
1/2 cup diced sweet peppers (optional - I had some leftover from a bag I had in the freezer so I threw them in, please use what you have and definitely bell peppers taste great in this soup)
1/4 - 1/2 cup raw cashews (optional)
1/2 cup quinoa* uncooked
4 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 Tablespoons tahini
salt and pepper to taste

Optional toppings:
hot sauce

1. It a large soup pot, saute the onions, hot peppers, and garlic in the olive oil.
2. Add six cups of water, squash, sweet potatoes, turnip, carrots, and sweet peppers.
3. Cover and bring to a boil. Once the water is boiling, add the Better Than Bouillon (alternately you can use ready made vegetable stock instead of water or a mixture).
4. Simmer for one hour. (You could make this soup quicker, but it tastes better, in my opinion when it cooks longer.)
5. The vegetables should be broken down at this point. Add the cashews and quinoa.
6. Cook with the lid off for 15 minutes, until the quinoa opens up.*
7. Add nutritional yeast, tahini, salt, and pepper.
8. Blend with an immersion blender until you read your desired consistency.
9. Top with a hot sauce (a simple Cholula or Red Rooster hot sauce works well and doesn't over-power the flavors) and za'atar. I've also used pepitas to top this soup which also adds to its autumn flare. Serve hot with bread for dipping.
*You could also use precooked quinoa and add it into the soup before or after using the immersion blender.

1 comment:

Jacqueline said...

Wow this looks super good! I like to make a big pot of soup Mike and I can take for lunch each day all week and I think this is next week's lunch menu, to be cooked up in a big pot this Sunday!