Livin’ Greens Soup

Chilled… and very cool indeed!
Live Green Asparagus SoupOh… and did I mention it’s LIVE???
“What does that MEAN exactly?” you might ask. Well, LIVE means it’s NEVER been cooked, and never been heated past a certain point.
“Why should I care?” you might ask.  Well, because when you keep things quote on quote “live” – you preserve all the precious, vital nutrients contained IN that food, that would have been lost in the cooking process.
AND, since you’re blending it and cracking fiber cell walls, you’re getting even MORE of those precious, detoxifying, slimming, filling, yummy vitamins and minerals.
So I say… “GO GREENS GO!”  (I was a cheerleader in high school, so sue me).

Ingredients:
1/2 peeled cucumber
4 or 6 shoots of asparagus
1 celery rod
handful of baby greens (such as spinach & baby lettuces)
couple of leaves of basil
salt
1/2 cup water + few ice cubes

Directions:
Peel cucumber, cube.  Toss in the Vitamix (or blender) with all ingredients.  Set to “smoothie”, give it a whirl…  Donezo!

You now have NUTRIpowers!

5 Minute Fresco Summer Soup

I was in the mood for Gazpacho today… 2 problems: no bell peppers & no tomato juice (hello sodium bath).  Eyed fridge, grabbed what I had on hand and Voila!  Amazing Gazpacho-esque summer soup!  It was so delicious, I ate (slurped down) 2 bowls in 5 minutes, so what!

Ingredients:
1 small seedless cucumber, peeled and cubed (about 4 or 5 inches)
2 large tomatoes, cut into large cubes
1 celery stalk, chopped, about 8 inches or so
2 Tbsp onion
1 to 1.5 cups of filtered water
few sprigs of cilantro (no thick stems)
Sea salt
Key: juice from 1/2 lime, makes ALL the difference, completely ties the flavors together
**Optional: few drops of hot sauce

Directions:
Toss all veggies in a blender, pure on soup setting (Vitamix: start with 1, quickly progress to 3, hold for 40 seconds).  When consistency is almost right, toss in cilantro and add the lime juice – process a few seconds more.
Serve and enjoy immediately… like you’ll be able to resist ;)

Cauli Butternut Squash Batman! This soup is DELICIOUS!

Haha – ok… so I’m having some fun today  :)  That’s what cooking’s all about, right?  Fun, good times & a happy tummy.  This soup sure is excellent for the chilly winter season: perfectly incorporating seasonal produce to help you feel grounded, cozy and comforted…  The added bonus is the natural sweetness, which can surely help with those pesky sweet cravings.
It’s so creamy and delicious, you’d never guess it’s VEGAN.

Ingredients:
6 baby leeks
1 celery stalk
1.5 carrots
small butternut squash
1/3 head cauliflower
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger (optional)
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 teaspoon dry thyme
1 teaspoon dry basil
3 teaspoons of salt (or to taste)
sprinkle of pepper
4.5 cups water

Directions:
Cut off leaf parts of leeks, dice thin.  Dice carrot and celery.  Toss all into a pot along with olive oil and saute for about 7 minutes (until things start to look a bit transparent and browning – see photo).  While sauteing, start bringing 4.5 cups of water to a boil, then pour into the sauteing mixture.  Add butternut squash and all seasoning, and bring all to a boil.  It’s a good idea to taste the broth to see if more salt or spice is needed.  Once it’s boiling, turn to simmer and let the soup cook for about 25 to 30 minutes. When the squash is almost tender, toss in cauliflower and cook an additional 10-15 minutes.  Butternut squash and cauliflower should be thoroughly cooked so that a fork can easy pierce both.  When finished, use a wand blender to puree the soup.  You can also use a regular blender but please let the soup cool down and puree in small batches.   Prepare a big batch on a cold winter’s night and feel instantly warm and cozy.  Refrigerate the rest to eat for lunch or dinner later – I’m pretty sure this soup freezes nicely too.  Bon App!