Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Creamy Carrot Cilantro Soup

While my grandma is rehabbing her recently broken leg, she is stuck away from home for a few weeks, and thus away from decent food, much less delicious food. And since she also has strict diet restrictions, she can't even eat all of the unappetizing food that they put in front of her. I remembered that she liked this soup when I made it for once her last year, and aside from being an incredibly healthy meal choice, it is also perfect for this time of year, as the weather starts to turn chilly and a hot bowl of soup sounds especially cozy. And besides, it doesn't get much more comforting than soup when you're sick.

Creamy Carrot Cilantro Soup

1 lb. carrots (baby carrots are fine, too)
1 -2 tbsp. sunflower oil/olive oil
1 tbsp. Earth Balance "Buttery Spread"
1 onion, chopped
1 celery rib, diced finely
2 small Yukon potatoes, or 4 red potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite-size pieces
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
3 - 5 tsp. ground coriander (to taste)
1 - 2 tbsp. chopped cilantro
1 cup soy milk
salt and freshly ground black or white pepper

Trim and peel the carrots and cut into chunks. Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onion over gentle heat for 3 - 4 minutes, until slightly softened. Dice the celery and chop the potatoes. Add them to the onion in the pan, cook for a few minutes, then add the carrots. Cook over gentle heat for 3 - 4 minutes, stirring, and then cover.

Reduce the heat even further and sweat the vegetables for about 8 - 10 minutes. Shake the pan, or stir occasionally, so the vegetables do not stick to the bottom. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Half-cover the pan and simmer for another 10 - 12 minutes, until the carrots and potatoes are tender. Melt the Earth Balance "Buttery Spread" in a small saucepan and saute 3 tsp. ground coriander for about 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat, add the chopped cilantro, and saute for about another minute. Set aside until required. Process the soup in a food processor or blender and pour into a clean saucepan. Stir in the soy milk and the cilantro mixture. Season to taste, adding more coriander, salt, and pepper as desired, and heat gently just until hot (but not boiling).

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