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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Summer Recipe: Spicy Carrot Soup

If your gut gets very angry with you when you eat or drink anything with milk products (meaning, you get bloated and gassy due to lactose intolerance or food allergy/sensitivity), then you probably shy away from soup recipes that have the word "cream" in them. But guess what? You can make cream-based soups with almond, hemp or brown rice milk, which is precisely what this recipe does.

The main ingredient in this recipe is, as the title suggests, carrots. If you visit any farmers' market this summer, which I encourage you to do, you can find heirloom carrots -- they're perfect for this dish. They come in a variety of colours -- yellow to purple -- and have different tastes from tart to super sweet.

Carrots are a food with a ton of nutritional benefits. Not only do they help improve our vision, they also help our heart. A recent study out of the Netherlands revealed yellow and orange foods reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Additionally, because of their high antioxidant content, they reduce the risk of many different cancers. A wonderful source of vitamins A, C and K, carrots are also beautifying -- they're good for hair and skin.


8 to 10 medium-sized organic carrots, grated
2 cups diced organic celery
2 medium-sized organic potatoes, diced
6 cups organic chicken broth or homemade chicken stock (swap with vegetable stock if you are a vegetarian)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup almond milk
Juice of ½ lemon
Spices to taste (Suggestions: Sea salt, fresh pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, curry. Or, better yet, use whatever is growing in your herb garden.)

Crock-Pot (Slow Cooker) Method:

Place grated carrots, diced celery, potatoes, garlic and chicken broth in crock-pot.
Cover and cook on high setting for about four hours. Turn off heat and let contents cool.
When cooled, puree mixture in a blender or food processor. When all vegetables have been pureed, return to crock-pot. Add the almond milk, the lemon juice and, in desired amounts, the spices to your preference and taste. Cover with lid and cook on low setting for about one hour or until milk and spices have blended in. Serve warm or cold.

Even if you don't have a slow cooker, this dish can be made on the stove using a large pot. Cook vegetables in chicken broth/stock until soft and follow recipe as above. After pureeing and remaining ingredients have been added, heat thoroughly on stove top for about 30 minutes on a low setting just until milk and spices have blended in.

Place in soup bowls and garnish with a sprig of fresh parsley and grated lemon zest.

Makes eight to 10 servings.

Source: Joy McCarthy, Registered Holistic Nutritionist

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