I love to eat! But I'd rather not spend a lot of time cooking. I developed these crockpot recipes with inspiration from Heaven's Banquet—Ayurvedic Vegetarian Cookbook by Miriam Hospodar, and The Ageless Woman—Natural Health & Beauty After Forty, by Dr. Nancy Lonsdorf, an expert in the system of natural medicine called ayurveda.
For a recipe index, see the Blog Archive below.
Crockpot Soupe Basics:
I'm an intuitive cook; I use words like "about" or "handful". My recipes make about four servings of hearty soup. The basic measurements are: 1/4 - 1/3 cup whole grain; approx. 1/3 cup lentils; 1.5 quarts of water; 1.5 - 2 Tablespoons of ghee (clarified butter, highly recommended by ayurveda) or vegetable oil; 1 teaspoon of salt; 1 rounded Tablespoon of spices; and about 3 cups of mixed veggies. I use, and recommend, organic ingredients for the purest food and optimal nutrition. I hope this blog helps you enjoy good eatin', good health, and creative cooking! I love to hear your comments.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Asparagus and Zucchini Soup

Hurray for spring and local, organic asparagus! High in antioxidants, asparagus also contains glutathione, a phytonutrient which is essential for helping the liver remove toxins.

My soup today was delicious!
About 1/2 cup of red lentils. (I use the highly technical cooking terms about and some...)
About 1/8 cup quinoa, and 1/8 cup barley.
About 1.5 quarts of water, bring it to a boil and transfer to the crockpot.

Walk the dog, meditate, get ready for work. Or whatever you do in the morning. Come back in about an hour.

Heat 1-2 Tbsp of sunflower oil, briefly sautee 1 full Tbsp of Lemon Curry.
Toss in prepped veggies:
A bunch of asparagus, chopped into half-inch pieces.
One small zucchini, steamed whole to retain best flavor, then chopped and added to the soup as we're getting out our thermoses.
1 cup of fresh cilantro
1 full tsp of mineral salt
Some cubed tofu

Stir it up and ladle into your thermoses.
Have a yummy day!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Little Green Gumbo

I had gumbo for the first time recently in Jackson, MS, when my Dad and I went to see the Raoul Dufy exhibit (terrific - go see it before July 5 '09). It was also a return visit for him - 48 years ago he was a Freedom Rider, was arrested at the Jackson bus station and spent the summer at Parchman Farm penitentiary. But that's another story...

Back to the gumbo. It was good! When I got home I checked my favorite cookbook (Heaven's Banquet) and found a couple of recipes. Mine is the 1040 EZ version.

Night before: finely chopped kale, about 5 cups (chard and collards would also work well, and could be a mix of greens. I'll try that next time.) Finely chopped 2 celery stalks, peeled and chopped one smallish sweet potato (not a yam), and grate about 1/2 Tbsp of ginger root.

Next morning: Get out your trusty 3 qt pan
Heat sunflower oil, add 1 Tbsp of "Gumbo Filé" (powdered sassafras and thyme). I was planning to get all the herbs Miriam mentioned in her recipe, but lo and behold the co-op had Gumbo Filé!)
Add the ginger root, and sautee briefly. Add veggies and sautee a few minutes then fill the pan half full with hot water. Bring to a boil and transfer to your crockpot. Stir in 1 tsp of mineral salt and 3 bay leaves.

Let soup simmer on high while you do your thing: shower, meditate, exercise... whatever it is you do. I returned about an hour and a half later. If you plan to leave the crockpot longer, put it on medium or low.

Final steps: Wash and rinse 1/2 cup of rice. I like organic white basmati. Add water and bring to a boil for a few minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the partially cooked rice to the crockpot. It will continue cooking in the thermos.

Fish out the bay leaves.

Heat a small amount of sunflower oil or ghee on LOW (a skimpy 1 tsp is plenty), and add a dash of hing (asafoetida) if you like. It smells bad but becomes very fragrant when heated. Don't let it sautee for more than a couple of seconds - it goes from stinky to good to horrible really fast. Spoon some soup into the pan and swish, then stir it into the soup. Get out your thermoses, ladle it up, and head out the door.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"Mediterranean" soup with tahini and lemon curry

Approx 1/4 c Green lentils, 1/4 c of red lentils, and 1/3 c quinoa (could also use millet or cous cous), wash well then drain.
Add fresh water, filling to approx 1.5 quarts, and bring to a boil.
Transfer to Crockpot on high and go do your thing.

Later: Heat some sunflower oil on medium, add 1 full Tbsp Lemon Curry spice mix (available from healthfood stores). Sautee until fragrant, just a few seconds.
Add a tsp of finely chopped fresh ginger root.
Add prepped veggies of your choice. I used 2 zuccinis and 1 cup of chopped parsley.
Sautee veggies for a couple of minutes, then add to Crockpot.
Add 1 tsp of mineral salt.
Add half can of whole cooked garbonzo beans, and about a Tbsp of tahini.

Mix well, and ladle 'er up!

I'm loving Dr Kracker's "flatbread crackers" instead of bread, so I usually serve one (they're big and hearty) with the Soupe du Jour.