Cleansing Vegetable Soup

Vegan Cleansing Soup Recipe
This is the other dish I brought to the Lenten potluck earlier this week. I looked through a bunch of detox soup recipes online, then used the ideas to throw this together. It’s packed with veggies, easy to make, and this recipe makes a large pot so you could eat it for days…I would have it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner if I were more disciplined. Anyway.

Cleansing Vegetable Soup
2 pounds dried split peas
2 heads broccoli
1 pound carrots
1 pound celery
1 bunch green onion
1/4 C peeled & chopped turmeric (or more to taste)
2 bunches kale
6 C vegetable broth (homemade or high quality store bought)
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
optional: 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast

Cook split peas according to instructions, allowing them to get very tender and soft.
Meanwhile, chop all the veggies except kale, and add to large pot with turmeric and vegetable broth – include the leafy celery and carrot tops, they add a great flavor and are very nutritious. Bring to a simmer over medium low heat, and simmer until veggies are tender and falling apart, adding salt and pepper to taste (and nutritional yeast, if using). Tear kale from stems and add to veggies. Simmer until tender.
Let the veggies and split peas cool slightly, then blend in batches – I did a few ladles-full of vegetables along with a big scoop of split peas in each batch. You can blend it all until completely smooth, or leave some of the veggies in chunks.

Vegan Cleansing Soup Recipe
At home, I serve the soup with nutritional yeast sprinkled on top and finished with Mediterranean black lava salt (I love finding fancy salts at Home Goods). The split peas bulk it up and make it pretty filling on its own, but it would also be wonderful over rice or potatoes. I bought a container of rice with chickpeas from the monastery, it had bits of onion and dill in it, and it was delicious with the soup mixed in.

This soup is oil free and perfect for a strict fasting day…unless you accidentally grab a vegetable broth with safflower oil in it, which is a totally unnecessary ingredient and why you should make your own broth. But it is better to eat the soup than let it go to waste :)

Advertisements

2016 Lenten Potluck #1: Green Detox Salad Dressing

Green Vegan Detox Salad
We had our first Lenten potluck of the season last night. I actually made two things, but the soup you’ll have to wait for until I have pretty picture of it. As it is, this is the best I could do at the time for my salad dressing!

I’ve been eating so much junk food lately, I decided my first meal in Lent should be something very clean and healthy. Of course, I couldn’t help but try a bunch of other things at the potluck, but I tried to stick to things that looked simple and full of veggies and protein. Anyway. This lovely bright green detoxifying salad dressing was perfect for an evening commemoration of St. Patrick. Plus each of the main ingredients is high in various vitamins and minerals, great for bone health and boosting your immunity.

The best part is it’s super easy to make, and has so few ingredients you won’t have to break the bank if you want to use organic produce.

Green Detox Salad Dressing
1 large cucumber, unpeeled
1/4 chopped onion
1 avocado, peeled & de-stoned
2 lemons, juice of
sea salt, to taste

Chop first three ingredients. Place in blender with the lemon juice, and BLEND. It should be smooth and easy to pour, but won’t be very creamy. Add salt to taste.

I served my dressing with an organic spring lettuce mix, but it would also be great as a substitute for salsa. Add another avocado and a clove of garlic, and it’s basically a super-hydrating guacamole.

And did I mention…it’s also oil free and perfect for a strict fasting day.

Lemon Ginger Chia Beverage

Hydrating Lemon Ginger Beverage with Chia Seeds
This may just be the most Lenten recipe I post this season. It was supposed to look beautiful and radiant in the sunlight, but I just realized now it even looks kind of swampy sitting in the grass like this. The swampiness isn’t exactly a fair representation, but let it be a warning to you: This is not a drink for the faint of heart.

I have a thing for drinks with a bite. This one, for example, is extremely tart and mildly bitter, with just a hint of sweetness from maple syrup. The chia seeds are added to make it more satisfying, and may also help keep you hydrated (anyway that’s what I keep reading) – important during the very strict fasting days at the beginning of Great Lent and end of Holy Week.

Lemon Ginger Chia Beverage
2 – 3 lemons, or to taste
1/4 C peeled ginger, roughly chopped
2 1/2 C water
maple syrup, to taste
3 Tbsp chia seeds
*optional: lemon zest

Juice two lemons (or more, if you prefer), and add juice to pot with water. Slice the third lemon and set slices aside.
Add chopped ginger and optional lemon zest* to lemon water and slowly bring to a boil over medium heat, then lower heat and simmer 20 minutes. Remove from heat and strain out ginger chunks. Add maple syrup to taste (keep in mind this is supposed to be somewhat healthy…add just enough so the bitter and tart flavors don’t kill you). Stir in chia seeds. Place in a glass jar. Add lemon slices, and place jar in fridge to chill. Drink cold.
This recipe makes about two glasses.

*I carefully sliced the peel off my two lemons – not the bitter white pith, just the yellow peel – and added it with the ginger. Slicing is so much faster than using a zester!