Tag Archives: dairy-free

Heavenly carrot soup

23 Feb

I wish I had the patience for food photography. There are so many wonderful blogs out there that make your mouth water just to read them because of the gorgeousness of the photography. And food should be beautiful, in my opinion, if it’s at all possible. When food is beautiful and then the taste is scrumptious, then you don’t have to wait to see if there’s a heaven after this life on earth.

I made an amazing carrot soup tonight. I know it’s bragging, and it was kind of accidental, but everyone who tasted it agreed.

So, I’d loved to have photographed it properly and presented it to you like this:

This roasted carrot soup picture looks totally awesome, and I bet it tastes divine, too. If you want to try making the soup pictured here, I stole it from http://beingsuzyhomemaker.blogspot.ca/2011/02/roasted-carrot-soup.html. Click on the pic to go there.

This roasted carrot soup picture looks totally awesome, and I bet it tastes divine, too. If you want to try making the soup pictured here, I stole it from http://beingsuzyhomemaker.blogspot.ca/2011/02/roasted-carrot-soup.html. Click on the pic to go there.

Instead, this is what I’ve got for you:

Beautiful colour, but not such an impressive picture. But you know you'll want to make this soup.

Beautiful colour, but not such an impressive picture. But you know you’ll want to make this soup.

The problem with carrot soup is that the flavour depends so much on the quality of the carrots. And let’s face it, in the middle of winter, a lot of carrots have become kind of bitter, bland, or otherwise uninspiring, when what you really want is sweetness, with just a hint of zing.

That, my friends, is what this soup delivered. Pure, sweet, carroty goodness. My method was the taste-test-add-taste-again method, but I’ll try to estimate quantities for you.

Heavenly Carrot Soup

  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 5 or 6 large carrots, washed, unpeeled (so easy)
  • 1.5 – 2 L water
  • 1 tbsp savoury
  • 1 tsp celery seed
  • 1 – 2 tbsp salt
  • 2 – 3 tbsp creamed honey
  • 2 tbsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • fresh mint for garnish
  1. In a large pot, melt the coconut oil. Add chopped onions and cook until softened. Some slight browning is okay. Just let them cook while you chop the carrots.
  2. Discard the tops of the carrots and chop into 3-5mm circles. Probably you could chop into any size you want, but I wanted these to cook quickly. Add the chopped carrots to the pot.
  3. At this point I also added three peeled and chopped broccoli stems that I happened to have hanging about. I don’t think they did a thing to the flavour, but you know, in the spirit of full disclosure here…
  4. Add 1.5 to 2 L of water and bring that baby to a boil. Turn down to a slow boil or hot simmer. Whatever you feel like. I was impatient. Dinner was late as it was.
  5. Add the savoury, celery seed, and salt. I used coarse sea salt because I ran out of the fine stuff. I figured it would dissolve anyway and it wouldn’t matter. I like to be kind of generous with salt, I admit it. Salt to your own taste.
  6. Add enough honey to make the soup as sweet as summer carrots.
  7. Lemon juice adds just a slight puckery zing to the soup that is otherwise just too sweet. Don’t add too much or it’ll just taste like lemons. Fresh-squeezed is SOOOO much better than the bottled kind. I happened to have some leftover from last night’s dinner (but truly fresh-squeezed would have been even better, as I find it starts getting bitter when it sits out). But, hey, even bottled is better than none at all.
  8. After the carrots are cooked soft, get out your handy-dandy immersion blender (or transfer in batches to the other kind of blender) and whirl it all up until smooth(ish).
  9. Ladle into bowls and garnish with fresh mint. Ooooh, yeah. Mint and sweet carrots are a match made in heaven, baby.
  10. Michael had his soup as-is. Halia’s got the ice cube treatment. I added a splash of almond milk to the middle of mine. It was aaaaaalll good.
  11. Enjoy!

Here’s a PDF version of the recipe if you want it to be easier to print: Heavenly Carrot Soup

Scallops in coconut lemon sauce

13 May

I wasn’t able to start cooking supper until 5:30 last night.  I always want to have supper on the table by 6 o’clock, so this gave me a very tight schedule.  Supper turned out to be delicious, though, and I pronounced it so on Facebook.  I’ve had a couple of requests for recipes, so here I am.

Michael had already put rice in the the rice cooker, and I had a bag of frozen bay scallops sitting in a sinkful of water.  I peeked into the fridge to see what we had and came up with the following.  Measurements are approximate, as I was making this up on the fly.  Both recipes make about four servings.

SCALLOPS IN COCONUT LEMON SAUCE

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • white and light green part from 1 leek, well washed and chopped
  • one bag of frozen bay scallops, thawed(ish)
  • 1 or 2 tomatoes, chopped (I used a handful of halved grape tomatoes)
  • half a can of coconut milk (don’t skimp on the quality!)
  • 3-5 tbsp lemon juice (to taste)
  • 1-2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves (just a scant whiff of this)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tbsp tapioca starch or cornstarch
  • fresh ground pepper

Melt coconut oil in a saucepan.  Add  chopped onion and chopped leek and cook for a couple of minutes to soften.

Add scallops and cook for two minutes.  (Mine were still half frozenish, and I think that helped them from getting overcooked.  If they’re fresh or completely thawed, you might try adding them later in the recipe.)

Add tomatoes, coconut milk, lemon juice, honey, celery seed, cloves, and salt.  Simmer for a few minutes at medium heat to let the tomatoes cook a little.

Dissolve starch in a couple of tablespoons of cool water.  Stir into the sauce and allow to thicken.  Serve over hot rice with a sprinkle of fresh ground pepper.  This would also be good on pasta.

HERBED ZUCCHINI WEDGES

While I was waiting for the onion to soften and the scallops to cook and the sauce to thicken, I prepared zucchini for my vegetable side.

  • 2 zucchinis, slicked into pieces three inches long and a 1/4 inch thick.
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp dried or ground rosemary
  • 1/2 tbsp dried or ground tarragon
  • salt and pepper

Arrange zucchini slices on a foil-lined cookie sheet and drizzle them with good-quality olive oil.

Sprinkle ground herbs over zucchini.  (I don’t like eating those needly bits of rosemary, so I crushed my dried rosemary and dried tarragon with a mortar and pestle.  I think this really brings out the flavour of the herbs.)

Salt and pepper to taste.

Place under broiler and broil to desired softness.  (I think mine took around 5 minutes.)  Keep an eye  out because zucchini cooks quickly!

The resulting plates were beautiful, but we were too busy eating to take a picture.  But go ahead and imagine the green zucchini, white scallops, and red tomatoes.  Hmm, I’m thinking a splash of wine wouldn’t have gone amiss here.

Bon appetit!

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