Natural Living: Fall cleanse, part 2

Last week I talked about the importance of cleansing this time of year and how to prepare yourself for a weeklong vacation away from toxins. Here are some recipes you can use to get started on your way to better health. Please reference last week’s article to better prepare yourself for this cleanse.

Autumn/winter seven-day soup cleanse — Creating at least five different soups with different textures and spices is important to keep your palate enticed. Here are a few to get you started, however if you want more ideas, Google “vegan soup recipes.”

Lemon Greek Rice Soup

4 cups reduced-sodium vegetable broth

1/3 cup brown rice

1 12-ounce package silken tofu (about 1 1/2 cups)

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon turmeric

1/4 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper.

1. Bring broth and rice to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the rice is tender, about 30 minutes.

2. Carefully transfer two cups of the rice mixture to a blender. Add tofu, oil and turmeric; process until smooth. Whisk the tofu mixture, lemon juice, dill and pepper into the soup remaining in the pan. Heat through.

Gingered Sweet Potato and Carrot Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth

1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced

5 large carrots, peeled and sliced

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ginger, chopped

1. Heat oil in large saucepan. Add onion and cook until soft. Add broth plus 2 cups of water, then add sweet potato, carrot and ginger. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until veggies are tender, about 15 minutes.

2. Add soup contents into a food processor or blender. Puree until smooth, (use care with hot liquids in a blender to avoid being burned). Add salt and pepper to your liking.

Vegetarian Quinoa Chili

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed

1 cup water

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 jalapeno pepper, diced

1 large carrot, peeled and chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 medium zucchini, chopped

2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed

1 (15 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

3 (15 ounce) cans diced tomatoes

1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce

2-3 tablespoons chili powder, depending on your taste (we used 3)

1 tablespoon ground cumin

Salt and black pepper to taste

1. In a medium sauce pan, combine the quinoa and water. Cook over medium heat until water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Set aside.

2. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, jalapeño, carrot, celery, peppers, and zucchini. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

3. Add the black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Stir in the cooked quinoa. Season with chili powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper. Simmer chili on low for about 30 minutes. Serve warm.

Miso Soup

4 cups water

1/3 cup miso

3 green onions (scallions), chopped

1 tablespoon shredded nori or wakame seaweed

1/2 block firm silken tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)

Bring water to a slow simmer and add seaweed. Allow to simmer at least 5-6 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until miso is well dissolved.

Thai Vegetable Soup

2 cups coconut milk

4 cups water

1/2-1 small jar Thai Red Chili paste (to taste)

1/2 cup of each chopped: carrots, broccoli, kale, mushrooms (or whatever veggies you have)

1/4 cup cooked brown rice or quinoa

Boil coconut milk and water in a large pot, add chili paste and stir, add veggies and simmer till veggies are soft but not mushy, about 15 minutes. Pour over rice or quinoa and serve.

Green Soup

Extra virgin olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 teaspoon sea salt

3 cups water

1/4 cup organic brown rice

1 bunch mustard greens

1 bunch kale

12 ounce bag of baby spinach

32 ounces vegetable broth

Big pinch of cayenne pepper

Fresh lemon juice

Heat olive oil in a sauté pan. Add chopped onions and a sprinkle of sea salt; cook over medium heat until onions are soft and caramelized, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, combine 3 cups of water, 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt and brown rice in soup pot. Heat to boiling, then reduce to simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Remove tough stems from kale and mustard greens and discard. Chop coarsely. (Use a food processor and pulse, so the greens don’t get over-processed). Chop the spinach, but keep separate. When rice has cooked 30 minutes, add greens and return to simmer and cook 10 minutes. Add a little of the rice/greens cooking water to the onions and stir. Immediately add onions back into rice/greens pot. Add spinach, vegetable broth and cayenne pepper. Return to simmer and cook 5 minutes or so, until spinach is tender but still bright green. Add soup to blender in batches and thoroughly blend until pureed and smooth.

If the task of cooking these soups seems daunting, purchase a crock pot and let it do the work for you. You can refrigerate these soups for a maximum of 3 days after which you may freeze them and use as desired.


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