Broccoli and Cheez Soup

Hi Friends,

I don’t really remember eating vegetables growing up.  I know we had them, I just recall any specific veggie dishes that I enjoyed enough to commit to memory.  There is, however, one fond vegetable dish from my youth that I recall.

Occasionally my mom would purchase frozen broccoli with cheese sauce.  Holy man!  I loved that stuff.  My dad and brother did not enjoy the broccoli covered in the thick cheddar sauce which was perfectly fine with me.  This meant I got to eat that much more of it.  The dish would stay  in between my mom and I and not get passed all the way around the table.

Recently I have become enamored with the Whole Living magazine’s web page.  They have really great, seasonal recipes that are nutritious and easy to prepare.  I found a recipe for creamy broccoli soup that looked like a prime candidate for an easy week night dinner that I could jazz up a bit.

What goes well with broccoli?  Cheese!  Art and I have been more vegan meals lately.  Not so much out of conviction to become vegans, but cheapness.  I challenged myself to keep the soup vegan but add in some comforting cheesy flavor with adding actual cheese.  Enter the ever popular, versatile nutritional yeast!

Broccoli and Cheez Soup

adapted from Whole Living

- 1 lb broccoli

- 1 TB olive oil

- 1 small onion, chopped

- 3 cloves of garlic minced

- 1 can white beans beans, drained and rinsed

- 2 1/2 cup vegetable stock

-1 tsp oregano

- sea salt and pepper to taste

- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

- 2 tb brown mustard

- Cut broccoli into small florets.  Peel and chop broccoli stalks into bit sized pieces.  Steam broccoli until bright green and tender.  Drain and set aside.

- Saute onion and garlic in olive oil for  3-4 min in a large pot over medium high heat.  Add vegetable stock, beans, oregano, salt and pepper.  Cover and let simmer for 5-6 min.  Remove from heat.

- Add broccoli to bean mixture.  Puree with an immersion blender until smooth.  (I left a few chunks for texture.  You could also do this using a blender.)

- Return pot to medium heat.  Stir in nutritional yeast and mustard.  Serve warm.

While it is not the most photogenic, I was very pleased with the results. Creamy, cheezy, and nutritious soup.  Good for  a cold Minnesota evening!

Favorite soup recipe?  I am always looking for a good one this time of year!

Later,

Kate

Cleanse Breaking Brownies

Hi Friends,

To kick off 2012 I decided to partake in a dietary cleanse inspired by Whole Living magazine.  Since the 2nd, I have been eating fruits, veggies, nuts, and other plant based fats a long with my daily mug of coffee (there are some things I refuse to give up!).  This week, I started incorporating beans, lentils and other legumes.  After I shook the initial detox headache, I felt awesome!  My skin is clearer, my mood is better, and I have lost a few pounds. I was even able to refuse fresh salted chocolate caramel at work.

Then Wednesday happened :(

The weather went from an unseasonably warm 50 degrees to standard January-in-Minnesota temps in the teens with nasty wind chills.  BOOOOOOOO!  Guess who started craving chocolate something fierce?  The bod needed a little something to stay warm.  I got to work on google ASAP.

I wanted to bake something gluten free and with minimal amounts of sugar.  I kept running into paelo inspired brownie recipes using almond meal.  This was my first time baking with almond flour and based on these results, I think I will be doing it again.

Mochaelo Brownies

adapted from Simply Sadie Jane

1/2 cup coconut milk

1/2 cup pitted dates

1 cup dark chocolate chips

1 packet VIA ready brew instant coffee

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups almond flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

2oz chocolate covered espresso beans, coarsely chopped

- Place dates and coconut milk in a blender.  Blend until well combine and dates are broken down.

- Heat coconut milk mixture in a small sauce pan over medium heat.  Stir in chocolate chips and instant coffee.  Once smooth, remove from heat and stir in eggs.

- Add almond flour, baking soda, and chocolate covered espresso beans.  Stir until just combined and pour into an 8 inch pan.

- Bake 350 for 20-25min.

The resulting brownie was moist with a cakey consistency.  The chopped espresso bean gives a slightly crunchy texture.  I am not sure I would add those again.  They were still sitting around from a Christmas gift and I wanted to use them up.  Additional chocolate chips would be better for next time.

Any other good almond flour recipes to share?

Later,

Kate

Well hello there!

Hi friends,

Here I am writing a blog post after what has been a long long absence.  I started another little blog this summer but abandoned it too.  Out of nowhere, I got the urge to blog again.  So I am going with it :)  What have I been up to since June?  You’ll have to wait and find out!  But since I can’t leave you empty-handed, here is an engagement photo pic of Art and I.

Later!

Kate

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