My husband came home from work the other day and saw I was cooking soup. “You’re make soup again?” I answered, “In winter I could live on soup!”
That night I was cooking yellow beets, which make a great color for soups. The taste is strong, so by combining it with a milder veggie like cauliflower, the strong flavor is modified and the “joining” result makes for an interesting soup. Both veggies have nutritional values worthy of consideration.
According to www.whfoods, “beets are an excellent source of the B vitamin, folate, and a very good source of manganese and potassium. Beets are a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus.” However, this site also notes that beets contain oxalates. While oxalic acid occurs naturally in plants and animals, when the amounts become too concentrated, they can cause health problems, do if you have a kidney or gallbladder problems, the site suggests avoiding them. You may also want to consult with a dotor or nutritionist if you are concerned about oxalates.
Cauliflower, according to www.zhion.com/herb/Cauliflower.html, contains a high amount of vitamin C, folate, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. It is also a cruciferous* vegetable being studied for its role in reducing cancer risk.” ( *See Glossary for definition.)
By combining these two veggies, the healthful benefits are quite impressive! This recipe is also quite simple, with room to change the proportions, if you so choose. Since beets are strong-tasting, I would suggest more cauliflower than beets, but enough beets to keep the golden color. I found 3 medium beets with 1/2 cauliflower worked, but you can change that. Also, feel free to experiment with other herbs and spices.
Golden Beet Soup
Utensils: Cutting board & knife, large and small saucepan, blender or food processor
Prep. Time: About 45 minutes, unless you precook the beets; then 20 minutes.
3 medium sized yellow beets, scrubbed and cut into halves or quarters.
1/2 large cauliflower, with florets cut into smaller pieces for quicker cooking
curry powder to taste
Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute to taste
salt & pepper, optional, depending on what other herbs you may use.
1. Wash, trim, and scrub beets. Cut into small chunks and cook in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Allow about 25 minutes. Drain, cool and remove skin by rubbing the beets in your hand. Skins should almost slide off.
2. While the beets are cooking, place wash & cut cauliflower and cook in another saucepan until tender, maybe 15 minutes. Drain and save water for pureeing the soup. (The water for the beets is stronger, so I use the cauliflower water.)
3. When the beets have cooled enough to handle and remove the skins, place half in food processor with some of the water. Buzz ’til smooth. Add 1/2 the beets and repeat. Do this until all the cooked beet and cauliflower pieces are pureed and the soup is all blended. Add water as needed.
4. Place pureed veggies back into the larger of the two saucepans and add herbs and spices to taste. Simmer for a few minutes to allow flavors to mingle. Serve hot with a garnish such as parsley or sprouts. (I used baby sunflower greens.)
Note: The soup tends to thicken when refrigerated, so save some of the cooking water in case you need to add it. Actualy, the thicker version can be used as a sauce over other veggies, doing double duty.
Variation: Feel free to add cooked brown rice or other whole grain to the soup. Also, you can leave out a few pieces of cauliflower and add them to the finished soup for more texture.