Monday, October 26, 2009

Soup for dinner (two ways)!

I am not able to take any credit for this recipe, but it is a fabulous example of a vegetarian soup that is so flavorful and hearty that you really cannot miss meat in the meal. The recipe is from Julie Sahni's Classic Indian Vegetarian and Grain Cooking; this book is quite interesting as she goes beyond just recipes and expounds on a lot of the food-related culture along with menu suggestions. It was published in 1985, but good food never goes out of style in my opinion. The original recipe does call for light cream or milk, but I like to use fat free evaporated milk for the creaminess, just a little bit lighter. You could easily substitute plain soymilk or the like, as well as olive oil for the ghee, to make this lactose-intolerant or vegan-friendly. I love the flavor of ghee, but the curry lends so much flavor that you really would not miss the ghee here.

This soup is so simple to prepare and all you really need is a salad to go with, bread or other sides are optional. The first night we had some veggie samosas (from the freezer) and a green salad. Tonight we had leftovers over some rice - the soup thickens up a bit so it is more like a dal or stew - with a green salad.

Cream of Curried Vegetable and Split Pea Soup Recipe

Makes 6 servings

4 T ghee
1 T curry powder (My favorite is Penzeys Spices' Sweet Curry powder - not spicy at all but wonderful flavor)
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup carrots, finely chopped
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped
1 cup water
3/4 cup fresh tomatoes, finely pureed (or 1/2 cup canned tomato puree)
3 cups cooked split peas
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp coarse salt, or to taste
1/2 cup fat free evaporated milk
  1. Heat the ghee in a 3 or 4 quart deep pot over medium-high heat. When it is very hot, add the curry powder and immediately add the onion, carrots, and celery. Saute the vegetables, stirring often to ensure that they brown evenly, for 5 minutes. Add 1 cup water, the tomatoes, split peas, pepper and salt. Cover and cook over low heat until the vegetables are tender (10 minutes). Add enough milk to mellow and velvetize the soup as well as thin it.

  2. Heat the soup thoroughly and serve garnished with chopped fresh coriander (cilantro), if desired.

Read more (and for nutrition info):

If you need some help on how to cook the split peas, check out
It really doesn't take too long, and you can always cook up a larger batch and throw some in the freezer for another day. Alternatively, cook up what you need for the soup a day in advance to make the prep even faster when you are ready to make the soup.
Check out Julie Sahni's book for many more delicious-sounding vegetarian recipes. She also has a number of other Indian cookbooks, both vegetarian and non.

No comments:

Post a Comment