Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Cold but Spicy Indian Soup
I am having another one of those “uber busy” weeks that have become my new normal. Whatever happened to retirement was supposed to be boring? ;-)
Monday is already a blur though I know I spent a lot of time on the book club blog. If you haven’t read “The China Study” and want to join us please do.
This morning (Tuesday) Dan and I started our morning with a nice trek through the neighborhood which was a little less than 3.5 miles. The weather was gorgeous with temps in the low 70’s and a reasonable amount of humidity. We covered most of the distance walking but there was some jogging too. I will cut back the jogging if my knee starts acting up again. I have to accept the fact that I am not young any longer.
When time came for dinner I had no idea what I was going to make, like usual. However I remembered a soup that Dennis had talked about last week at cooking class. I saw the recipe which he brought for the teacher and used that for inspiration for tonight’s dinner. Here is what I did:
Cold Spicy Indian Soup
Approximately 8 servings
2 cups split mung beans
4 carrots, roughly chopped
12 cups water, you may need more or less depending on evaporation
1 cup peeled, diced white onion
8 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced (approximately ½ head)
1 tablespoon garam masala
2 cups almond milk
1 – 3 diced jalapenos (depending on how much you like heat)
freshly ground black pepper to taste
½ teaspoon coconut extract
1 -3 inches fresh ginger (add to your taste)
cashew crème fraiche
fresh herbs - cilantro/parsley/mint/green onions
sliced almonds or curried squash seeds
Combine the dried beans and 8 cups of water, onions, garlic, carrots, and garam masala and cook until the beans are tender. Now puree the soup in your blender until completely smooth and return to the pot. Add the almond milk and coconut extract and stir to blend. Cook until you like the flavor of the soup, in other words until the flavors have blended. Add water necessary to achieve a consistency of cream. Remember that the soup will thicken as it chills.
Now place a cup or two of the soup in your blender and process the ginger and jalapenos until the soup is smooth. Add this to the other soup and stir to combine and taste for flavor. I like a fresh ginger taste so I added this mixture off the heat. If you find that the soup is too hot or sharp in flavor you can add a little stevia to round out the flavor.
Move the soup to a large container and chill it in your refrigerator until it is completely cold. It is meant to be served like gazpacho as a thoroughly cold soup.
To serve top the soup with any or all of the suggested toppings listed above.
Some days it is easier to come up with the things I am happy with than other days. However I also realize that the days when it is tough to focus on what is right is precisely the day when I need be still and write down as many as I can think of. Here goes:
• The weather was remarkable today. We had a gorgeous walk this morning before Dan went to work. Later I was able to open the windows at home and let the fresh air in. As I am typing this I am watching the sunset and listening to the locusts chirp (assuming that is the right word). The sound of the locusts is always comforting to me because they remind me of my grandmother we used to tell me they were the “hot bugs” when I was little.
• The fur children have been adorable today. They really enjoy lounging in the window and breathing the fresh air. It is so easy to make the cats happy. An open window and my little ones are as happy as they can be. We could learn a lot from cats couldn’t we?
• The boat was refueling at Turtle Cove today and is next headed for the Bahamas. It has been a long time coming but she is finally headed home. You have no idea how much we are both looking forward to her arrival.
• I finally figured out how to forward my new website to the domain I purchased. I was determined to make it work without calling anyone for help and a number of days later it is finally working. Now I need to refine the content and I will be ready to share the link with you.
• Having purchased a large basket of peaches (about 100) this weekend at the farmers’ market means I am in bit of peach overload. Good thing I love peaches huh? Every day I find myself eating peaches breakfast, lunch and dinner. As much as I love peaches I may not buy another basket next week. I think I could use a peach break for a week. However it was great to get a big basket for $20 and I am sure that I will miss ripe local peaches when they are gone. ;-)
• I almost have all the laundry done. I know that doesn’t sound like a big deal but I rarely see the bottom of our laundry basket. Dan and I make a lot of dirty laundry so I am enjoying having it completely under control for a change.
• This morning I had time to take part in a good webinar about marketing. I love being able to learn online. It is nice to sit in my own family room with a cup of tea and take part in a webinar. It is good to be alive in this age of technology even though I am a bit of technology dinosaur. ;-)
I just fed my hubby and now I need to clean up the kitchen and turn in. Tomorrow will start early with a little exercise if weather permits. *fingers crossed*
Talk with you again soon. Enjoy the remainder of your evening.