Recipe — Colorful Vegetables Spiced Soup and Herbed Bread

Recipe — Colorful Vegetables Spiced Soup and Herbed Bread

Bonjour!

Hope everyone had a sweet Valentine’s Day.

Below is a lively colorful orange soup with distinctive taste and rich texture. It’s as beautiful in the bowl as it is delicious. It’s so nice to discover new ways to prepare healthy dishes using simple ingredients such as vegetables, herbs and a little kosher meat, and transform these into an aromatic meal.

The combination of a variety of spices like cumin, cayenne pepper, and dried oregano turned out to be the key for great aroma and taste in this soup, blended all together bringing out intense flavor. Take your time and enjoy …

Happy Saturday and wishing you a relaxing and peaceful, long Weekend!

Colorful Vegetables Spiced Soup and Herbed Bread

Ingredients: Serves 4 – 6

Time: (for the soup) 2hrs between preparation and cooking

  • 15.05 oz organic sweet potato, skin less and chopped
  • 1 lb. organic carrots, peeled and chopped [approx. 4 large carrots]
  • ¾ cup organic celery, washed and chopped [approx. 2 stalks]
  • 1 cup organic red bell pepper, rinsed, seedless and chopped [approx. 1 large red bell pepper]
  • 1 cup organic white onions, peeled and diced [approx. 1 large onion]
  • 4 organic garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  •  1 lb. natural Angus prime beef chuck for stew cut into 2″ pieces
  • 1 cup organic fire roasted tomatoes [I used these tomatoes]
  • 32 FL.oz. organic vegetable broth – low sodium or homemade
  • 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  •  2 large bay leaves
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper powder
  • Kosher salt for taste, [for beef and whole soup]

How to Prepare:

  1. Generously salt the beef chunks and set a side.
  2. In a dutch oven, heat a large heavy soup pot on medium high heat until hot.
  3. Add olive oil followed by the beef in a single layer and sear meat until brown on both sides.
  4. Transfer the beef to a large glass bowl and turn down the heat to medium low.
  5. Add the onions and then garlic to the pot. Sauté until tender and turn translucent NOT brown, simmer and gently stir with heat resistant rubber spoon.
  6. Add the carrots and sweet potatos and continue sautéing until started to brown. Then continue adding celery, fire roasted tomatoes, red bell peppers, vegetable broth, bay leaves, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper and salt and return the beef to the pot as well. Cook for about 1 hour on low simmer, cover the pot and leave a crack for steam to escape. The meat and vegetables should fall apart when prodded with a fork.
  7. Check periodically to see that all the liquid hasn’t evaporated and add a little water if necessary.
  8. After completely cooked, take off the heat, remove the bay leaves and transfer the vegetable soup mixture into a regular blender or use an immersion blender. Then purée until very smooth. [You may also wait until the soup has cooled esp. if your blender is not heat resistant.]
  9. In another large heavy soup pot, on medium-low heat, pour in the vegetable puree, simmer gently and stir with heat-resistant rubber spoon until it is lightly thickened for 5-10 minutes.
  10. Pour the soup into serving bowls and garnish with a parsley leaf, and serve it hot.

 

Here is a delicious Herbed Garlic Bread recipe to serve with this soup:

Active Time: 10 min. Total Time 25 min. Serves 4

This garlic bread gets its vibrant green color from butter mixed with chopped parsley. The spread is also great on steamed vegetables.

  • ¾ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 loaf Ciabatta bread, cut in half horizontally

  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Finely chop parsley and garlic in a food processor. Add butter, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper, and purée until smooth.
  2. Spread herbed butter on cut sides of bread, then place cut sides back together. Wrap in foil. Bake until bread is warm and butter melts, about 15 minutes. Cut into wedges.

* Notes: 

  • The Herbed Garlic Bread recipe is from Martha Stewart Living Magazine dated March 2011. It was my first time making this bread and I enjoyed so much eating it with this soup that I decided to include it here.
  • The best part of this recipe is that if you don’t have time to cook, you just place the excess soup in Tupperware and refrigerate it for other meals.
  • The napkins featured in this recipe are from my new Bella Bohemian Good Living collection found on https://bellabohemian.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recipe — Rainbow Carrot Fish Soup with Spinach

Recipe — Rainbow Carrot Fish Soup with Spinach

Greetings!

It’s been five months since my last post here. I hope that you are all well … Also wishing you a HAPPY 2016!

Past months have been incredible with lots of exciting and new things going on. Traveling was definitely on my calendar, tasting new food, meeting cool people and listening to their stories. Part of these new adventures and discoveries I’ll share with you here soon, once I’ve organized my photos.

If you are seeking warmth and comfort in these cold winter days, I have the perfect soup to share with you today. Nothing too fancy, just some aromatic and nutritional homey bowls of soup that will make you feel revived after a long tiring day. It will keep the house warm and filled with wonderful blissful scents in the air. Below is my basic recipe for these chilly days.

Hope you enjoy every spoonful! 

Rainbow Carrot Fish Soup with Spinach

Ingredients: Serves 4 to 6

Time (for the soup): 45 to 50 minutes

  • 6 – 8 cups homemade fish stock
  • 2 cups organic Rainbow carrots washed, peeled and chopped [approx. 7 – 10 medium carrots]
  • 4 cups organic large spinach bunch, washed and chopped
  • 3 tbsp organic celery, washed and chopped [approx. 1 stick]
  • 2 tbsp organic shallots, peeled and finely chopped [approx. 1 large shallot]
  • 10 tbsp organic potato, peeled and chopped [approx. 2 medium potatoes]
  • 7 tbsp organic firm plum tomato, washed, seedless, skinless and diced [approx. 2 large tomatoes]
  • 5 tbsp organic sweet petite pepper, washed, seedless and chopped [any color approx. 6 pepper]
  • 1/2 tsp organic garlic, peeled and minced [approx. 3 large cloves]
  • 2 large bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp organic extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to sauté the fish and shrimp
  • Salt to taste, preferably Kosher
  • Freshly ground black peppercorns, to taste
  • 2tbsp organic fresh cilantro, finely chopped including stems [to add after finishing sauté the shrimp]
  • 1or 2 organic lemons, plus extra slices to garnish the top soup
  • 1 1/2 cup peeled, deveined, cooked medium shrimp and tail on [approx. 25 shrimp]
  • 2 cups Alaskan True Cod Fillet, firm and skinless , rinsed in cold water, pat and dry with paper towel than cubed (or choose other white fish, that is from sustainable sources. [approx. 0.85 lb or more if you like extra fish]

How to Prepare the Soup:

  1. Heat the olive oil with medium heat in a large, heavy soup pot and add shallots, garlic, and sautéd celery, than add potatoes with 1/2 teaspoon salt and fresh ground black pepper. Cook, stirring until the firsts ingredients are tender, for about five minutes. Add carrots, tomatoes and 2 bay leaves. Cook, stirring, until the mixing is very fragrant for about five more minutes then add the homemade fish stock. Cook stirring often until the ingredients have cooked down a bit and the soup starts to smell aromatic. After 25 minutes add spinach and sweet pepper. Continue cooking on very low heat for about 15 minutes, partially covered, taste and adjust salt and add black peppercorns as desired. Once done, remove from the heat. Also remove the 2 bay leaves.
  2. In two separate bowls season the white cubed fish and shrimp with salt, fresh ground black pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon lime juice toss and let sit for 15 minutes.
  3. In a hot, dry and wide non-stick frying pan add 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, over-medium high heat, add the fish, sauté for 3 minutes until it’s lightly brown, stirring often with a heat resistant rubber spoon. Squeeze more lemon juice if necessary for flavor, remove from heat.
  4. Meanwhile pour in serving bowls topped with fish and in the same non-stick frying pan add 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, and sauté the cooked shrimp for 2 minutes until is lightly brown, after that’s done, remove from heat and toss in 2 tbsp of chopped cilantro.
    Continue  scooping up the shrimp with a rubber spoon, finishing to top off all the soup bowls.
  5. Garnishing each bowl with slices of lemon and a spinach leaf, served hot. You can eat this soup with crackers, bread, biscuits or other side dish.

Rainbow Carrot Fish Soup with Spinach - 2016 photo 2 x1200 by Rhonya Holman

*Notes: 

  • Remember that the soup will thicken as it sits. Leftovers should be placed in a Tupperware (or similar) container and refrigerated. Additional fish stock or water may be added to adjust the consistency of the soup when reheating. This is a very tasty and nutritional soup which is also easy to make. Based on personal preference, if you would like the soup to have more flavor, you can add more chopped shallots, garlic and celery or some more fresh herbs and dried spices. Also you can choose any combinations of types of fish you like. This soup have been made before and this time taste better. I squeeze extra lemon juice when sauté the seafood. The soup had an interesting lemon flavor between spoonfuls.  Homemade fish stock is best; usually my chicken, vegetables, beef, shrimp or fish stock are homemade. It’s kept labeled in my freezer so it’s defrosted over night in the kitchen sink.
  • The colors of the soup are natural without any artificial colors because this dish was cooked with four different types of sweet carrots and well combined with other organic vegetables. I found these ingredients at my local Whole Foods market, but can also be found at any local Farmers Market as well. The fish is also from Whole Foods and says certified by: Marine Stewardship Council and shrimp are wild.
  • The soup serves 6 medium size bowls as pictured or can possibly serve 4 large bowls for fewer, more hungry guests/persons.
  • Preparation time was around 15-20 minutes for me, between washing and chopping the ingredients. It’s always faster if you work with a properly sharpened knife. It’s difficult for me to accurately estimate cooking times as each individual is different.

Rainbow Carrot Fish Soup with Spinach - 2016 photo 1 by Rhônya Holman for bella.bluelf.me

 

Recipe — Taro Root Soup

Recipe — Taro Root Soup

 

Hi all! 

I’m starting the new post of the year with this delicious recipe. Like I mentioned before last year I was working on new projects and experimenting with a lot of new things and letting my imagination flow. One of these things is cooking, mixing things up, taking notes of what is good or not, find the exact combination of the best flavors, so that food can taste yummy, smell good, look beautiful and be healthy at the same time. I will share my favorite dishes – many of which are family recipes collected over the years. Some may be unique too, things that I grew up eating that you never thought could be possible. All the recipes are easy to follow, without too many steps. They’ve all been tried and tested in my home. The dishes will be fused with a variety of international cuisines from Latin American, Italian, French and who knows. I always shop at the local farmers market as I like to visit and support the farmers just as much as to hear and check about current organic growing practices.

So you must be wondering why I decided to write about food? Simple. I’ve always liked to eat good food, though in small portions, ever since childhood. My mother cooked with Portuguese olive oil, garlic, fresh herbs, and a lot of vegetables and cheese — yes she usually added cheese on almost everything. And she likes to eat banana with warm milk before going to bed.

Since I’ve been in the US more than a decade, I’ve worked gained experience in the most exclusive and cool restaurants and then as chefs’ assistant for private homes. I hosted a variety of events including weddings and fashion shows, and organized and set up parties  in New York. Now I live in California and I have a company working as a designer, creating jewelry and home decor — that’s just a little about me.

Below is the recipe of a delicious, simple and nutritious soup high in vitamin C and vitamin B. The taro roots are also rich in fiber (great for the digestive system) and anti-oxindants while offering no cholesterol. Enjoy!!

Taro Root Soup with Coconut Milk

Ingredients: Servers 2

  • 1.87 lb. organic taro roots
  • 1-1/2 cups light organic coconut milk
  • 5 – 6 water cups
  • 3 tablespoons organic white onions, peeled and finely chopped
  • 3 organic garlic cloves, peeled and minced with garlic press
  • 2 tablespoons organic unsalted butter or vegetarian margarine
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste,  preferably Kosher
  • White ground pepper, to taste

How to Prepare

  1. Peel the taro roots, then cut in half and wash.
  2. Bring a large soup pot with 5 water cups, lightly salted, to boil, all together with the taro roots. Leave a crack for the steam to escape, and cook for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until they are soft.
  3. Take off the heat, and transfer the taro root mixture into a regular blender or use an immersion blender. Puree with turmeric powder until very smooth.
  4. In another large soup pot, melt butter with chopped onions and garlic over medium-low heat until it begins to soften and turn translucent not browned, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  5. Then pour the taro root puree and light organic coconut milk into the pot with the molten butter and season with kosher salt and a pinch of white pepper. Let simmer gently and stir with a heat-resistant rubber spoon until it is lightly thickened for 5 to 10 minutes. If it’s too thick, add a little more water until the consistency is that of a soft creme.
  6. Pour into bowls and serve hot. Garnish with your favorite greens. For this recipe I used chive leaves for freshness.
  7. Taste the soup and add more spices or salt if you like.


* Notes: You can make this soup with organic less-sodium vegetable broth, instead of water.

I like how the coconut milk combines perfectly with the tarot roots and adds a very pleasant and smooth flavor. A touch of turmeric powder will change the color of the soup while adding a few exotic notes. You can eat with crackers, bread,  biscuits or other side dish. Also this soup lives an incredible aroma in the air after it’s done.