Sprouted Mung Soup

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Here we are. Today is the first day of our mega marathon for protein rich dishes. Like I said yesterday, I want to showcase as many protein sources for vegetarians as possible. There will be 2-3 recipes with eggs but no more. So, the plan is to have lentil based dishes for the two days this week and the whole of next week.

We start with a simple and nutritious sprouted mung soup. It is delicious, if I may say so myself. The best part of this dish was that I could mix it with some rice and feed the daughter who has a problem with the word, ‘soup’. Even if you give her ice cream and call it soup, my guess is she would refuse it. Maybe I need a new name. Until then, I find new ways to get some soup into her.

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Mung beans is said to contain 24% protein which is significant. According to ‘A Historical Dictionary of Indian Food’ by K.T.Achaya, an old lost plant form first gave rise to two forms of Vigna sublobata (botanical name for beans), one of which evolved to black gram / urad dal and the other to green gram / mung dal. Now that I think about it, they do look similar. Mung, as per Buddha, is part of the food group which are ‘full of soul qualities’ and ‘devoid of faults’. If that is not recommendation enough, then what is?

Protein – Mung beans

Recipe adapted from here

Serves 4 -5 people

WHAT WE NEED

Mung sprouts                                           1 cup

Cabbage, grated                                       1/2 cup

Carrot, small & finely chopped             1

Capsicum, finely chopped                      1

Garlic cloves                                              3-4

Oil                                                                1/2 tsp

Cornflour                                                    2 tsp

Soy sauce                                                    1 tsp

Vinegar                                                       1 tsp

Vegetable stock                                         2 cups

Salt

Water

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Boil the mung sprouts in 3 cups of water for 4-5 minutes till it is cooked al dente (cooked but not cooked till mashable consistency)
  • Drain the water and save it for later
  • Heat oil in a pan and add the garlic
  • Once the garlic starts browning, add the mung sprouts, cabbage, carrots and capsicum and toss it
  • Stir fry for 2-3 minutes
  • Add the vegetable stock and 1 cup of water used to cook the mung sprouts
  • Let it come to a boil and then simmer for 5 minutes
  • Mix the cornflour with a little water to form a paste
  • Add salt, soy sauce, vinegar and cornflour paste and stir well
  • Simmer for 5 minutes
  • Serve hot with some bread for a wholesome meal
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the first day of the Mega Marathon for Protein Rich Dishes.


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Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 80

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Carrot Soup

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Carrot soup has been on my list since the beginning of this mega marathon but I kept postponing it. I would buy carrots with the intention to make the soup but I would end up using it for upma or pulao and postpone it yet again. If nothing else, my daughter would eat up the carrots leaving me staring at the empty fridge tray. Finally, the time has come for this delightful carrot soup and it is a testament to the saying – ‘Best things come to those who wait’.

The original recipe is titled Moroccan Carrot Soup but since the spices I used do not resemble Moroccon in any way, I dropped it from the title. It is a completely Indianized soup complete with sambhar powder and red chilly powder. Trust me, it works. If you don’t believe me, ask my daughter who is sitting beside me slurping away happily.

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Serves 2

Recipe adapted from here.

WHAT WE NEED

Carrots, medium                   4

Vegetable stock                      2 cups

Cinnamon powder                  1/2 tsp

Sambhar powder                     1/2 tsp

Red chilly powder                   1/4 tsp

Salt

Toasted sunflower seeds      to garnish

Freshly ground pepper         to garnish

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Peel and chop carrots and cook them until soft. they can be cooked in a pressure cooker or in a covered vessel with water
  • Let the carrots cool
  • Then blend them with 1/2 cup of vegetable stock to form a smooth puree
  • Add the puree and the remaining stock to a saucepan and turn on the heat
  • Add the spices and salt and mix well
  • Simmer for 6-8 minutes
  • If the soup is too thick, add little water to bring it to desired consistency
  • Turn off the heat
  • Garnish with toasted sunflower seeds and freshly ground pepper
  • Enjoy!

 

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This post is part of the Septembe Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Lemon Coriander Soup

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Some soups are delightfully simple and flavoursome. Lemon coriander is one such. It is made with ingredients which are usually available at all times at home. It makes a wonderful start to a meal by teasing your taste buds but at the same time not killing your appetite.

Serves 3

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Oil                                        1 tbsp

Ginger                                1″

Garlic cloves                     2-3

Spring onion white        2 tbsp

Onion, small                    1

Carrot, small                    1

Cabbage                            5-6 tbsp

Gram flour                       1 tbsp

Vegetable stock              3 cups

Coriander leaves            2 tbsp

Lemon juice                     2 tbsp

Salt & Pepper

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Heat oil. Finely chop the ginger, garlic, spring onion and onion and add to the oil
  • Once the onion is translucent, finely chop and add carrot and cabbage
  • Add gram flour and mix well
  • Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil
  • Add salt and pepper and simmer for 3-4 minutes
  • Turn off the heat and strain the vegetables
  • Put the soup back on the heat
  • Add lemon juice and coriander leaves and bring to a boil
  • Turn off the heat and garnish with coriander leaves
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the September Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Oats Soup

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There are days when you run around with a million things to do with no time for a coffee or a meal and then there are days when things miraculously work out and you finish hours worth of work in minutes and actually have time to sit back and relax. When you chance upon such a day, I suggest you make this ridiculously easy oats soup and put up your feet with a book or watch the birds go by.

This is, again, like some of the other soups in this series, adding a pinch of this and a dash of that and transforming a simple daily affair to food for the soul. To be honest, I am not a fan of oatmeal and eat oats only when I bake something with it. But this soup is definitely becoming a staple at my home. Do try especially if you like the flavour of garlic –

Serves 2 (or just a greedy me)

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Olive oil                         2 tsp

Garlic cloves                2-3

Ginger                            1″

Onion, small                1

Carrot, small                1

Quick cooking oats     1/3 cup

Water                              1 cup

Milk                                 1 cup

Salt & Pepper

Coriander leaves          for garnish

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Heat the oil. Chop the ginger and garlic finely and add to the oil
  • Once the garlic starts browning, finely chop and add the onions
  • After the onions turn translucent, add finely chopped carrot
  • Stir for 1-2 minutes on simmer and add oats
  • Fry for 2-3 minutes and then add water
  • Cover and cook for a minute
  • The oats should be cooked. If needed add 1/4 cup water
  • Add milk, salt and pepper and mix well
  • Turn off the heat after 1 minute
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot
  • If it is kept for longer time, the soup tends to thicken. Add water or milk to dilute it to soup consistency
  • Enjoy!

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This post is for the September Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

 

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68


Spinach Soup

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I am actually surprised that I could do over 15 soups before I came to spinach. Spinach is an integral part of many mixed veg soups which I have been postponing because I never went to the store in time to get fresh spinach. In the evenings, they would look so worn out and sad, that I would postpone my purchase for the next day and on it would go. Finally I bought some fresh spinach today and set out to fulfill the near certain mandatory soup in a soup marathon.

I was anemic for a brief period during my teenage. But my over cautious mom fed me so much spinach that dad teased me about having green blood. Then when I finally got my ‘over the minimum limit’ hemoglobin report, I rebelled and stopped eating spinach for a long time. Most of my spinach consumption was soup and hence this post is for my mother who takes all the credit for me never being anemic again.

Serves 2

Recipe adapted from here.

WHAT WE NEED

Spinach                                 1 bunch

Olive oil                                 1 tbsp

Onion, large                         1

Garlic cloves                        2-3

Gram flour                           1 tbsp

Water                                    2 cups

Cumin seeds, roasted       1 tsp

Salt & Pepper

Fresh cream (optional)   to garnish

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Remove the stems, wash the spinach leaves thoroughly and chop them
  • Heat oil. Chop and add the garlic and onion and saute till onion becomes translucent
  • Add the spinach leaves, salt and pepper. Saute for a minute
  • Add water and let it come to a boil
  • Simmer for 5 minutes
  • Take off the heat, add cumin seeds and let it cool
  • Once sufficiently cooled, blend the mixture to a smooth puree
  • Return it to the pan and simmer for 3-4 minutes
  • Take off the heat and garnish with cream
  • Serve hot
  • Enjoy!

 

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This is my post for the September Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Apple and Almond Soup

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I am not a huge fan of cooking fruits preferring to have them raw as they are supposed to be. But sometimes exceptions need to be made, especially when you have a beautiful symphony of apples with tomatoes, gooseberry and carrots topped generously with almonds. Exception accepted.

I had a couple of apples sitting on the counter top for 4 days without the daughter or me going anywhere near it. Usually it is the husband who cores and slices the apples for us. With him travelling, I kept postponing it till such time the apple threatened to decay. With me in a soup daily, I figured I could soup the apples without too much effort. Voila! I must admit I was surprised at how tasty and flavorful the soup turned out. Do try it –

Serves 3

Recipe adapted from here.

WHAT WE NEED

Apples                          2

Gooseberry                 2

Tomato, medium      1

Carrot, medium        1

Cinnamon                  1/2 tsp

Sugar                            1 tsp

Fresh cream               1/4 cup

Almonds                      8

Salt

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Blanch the almonds and peel the skin
  • Cut 4 of the almonds into slivers and set aside
  • Core and cut the apples into quarters
  • Cut the tomatoes and gooseberries.
  • Peel and cut the carrots
  • Take all the above in a vessel and pressure cook with 1 1/2 cups of water for 4 whistles
  • Once the steam escapes, take them out and cool
  • Once cooled, blend them along with 4 almonds to a smooth puree
  • Take the puree in a saucepan and add 1 cup water
  • Simmer for 10 minutes
  • Add sugar, salt, cinnamon and fresh cream and simmer for 1-2 minutes
  • Garnish with almond slivers
  • Enjoy!

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Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Beetroot Soup

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We can’t have a soup theme and not make beetroot soup. I was contemplating the popular Borscht Soup but due to many reasons (mostly laziness) I decided against it, at least for now. I love to eat beetroot but making it not my favorite task. It gets its colour all over my kitchen which sports a bloodied look after any beetroot dish attempt. I spend more time cleaning than actually cooking. But a beet is a beet is a beet and it simply has to be made. The rich, smooth soup is irresistible to say the least.

Luckily, I chanced upon this recipe which neither requires grating nor dicing the beet. It needs to be pressure cooked as a whole and then peeled and blended. Easy, right? Technically, this is beetroot puree plus white sauce but practically it is a creamy, flavourful broth that should not be missed. So here goes –

Serves 2

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Beetroot, medium               2

Butter                                      1 tbsp

All purpose flour                  1 tbsp

Milk                                          1/2 cup

Water

Cream                                       1 tbsp

Salt & Pepper

WHAT TO DO

  • Pressure cook the beetroot for 5 whistles
  • Once the steam has completely escaped, open the cooker, peel the beetroot and cut them into small cubes.
  • Blend the beetroots with a little water to a smooth consistency
  • In a pan, add butter with the heat on simmer and once the butter melts add the flour
  • Whisk the two continously to form sand like consistency
  • Add the milk and beetroot puree and whisk well to avoid any lumps
  • Simmer for 2-3 minutes
  • Add the salt and pepper and simmer for another 2-3 minutes
  • Turn off the heat
  • Garnish with cream and serve hot
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the September Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Pea & Mint Soup

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I have missed my peas terribly. Fresh peas were never available in Malaysia and I have a grudge against frozen ones. Don’t ask me why. It is a grudge, it is not supposed to be based on cold logic and reasonable arguments. Since they are my favorite and I could not have them for the longest time, I have been buying peas in Bangalore almost daily and adding it to every dish I make. The latest in that list is this peas and mint soup which captures the peas flavour beautifully while enhancing it with the freshness of mint and tangy-ness of the lemon.

Serves 2

Recipe adapted from here

WHAT WE NEED

Spring onion                    1 bunch

Potato, medium              1

Garlic clove                      1

Vegetable stock               500 ml

Shelled peas                     120 gms

Mint leaves, chopped    4 tbsp

Sugar                                   1 tsp

Lemon juice                      1 tbsp

Buttermilk                        2-3 tbsp

Salt & Pepper

 

WHAT TO DO

  • Chop the spring onions. Peel and dice the potato and garlic.
  • Add them along with the vegetable stock to a large saucepan
  • Let it come to a boil and then simmer for 10-12 minutes or till the potatoes are completely cooked
  • Set aside few peas for garnish. Add the rest to the saucepan
  • Simmer for 4-5 minutes. Any more time can take away the vibrant green of the peas
  • Add mint leaves, lemon juice and sugar and mix well
  • Let cool slightly and then blend into a smooth puree
  • Stir in 2 tbsp buttermilk and add salt & pepper
  • Put it back on the gas on simmer. Heat it without getting it to boil else the buttermilk will curdle.
  • Cook the peas set aside for garnish for 5 minutes in hot water
  • Serve hot garnished with the peas and balance buttermilk
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the September Mega Marathon under the theme – Soups.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68

Lentil Ginger Soup

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If I ever get into a situation where I can have only one flavour to cook with, I would take ginger. It’s simply my favourite ingredient and finds its way into almost all my dishes. 

Today’s soup is a delectable combination of lentils, ginger and vegetables. My guess is this recipe should work with most vegetables though I went for the classic onion, spring onion and carrot. Cabbage or cauliflower or broccoli should also provide interesting flavours. So here goes –

Serves 3

 Recipe adapted from here.

WHAT WE NEED

Onion, large             1

Spring onion           1 small bunch

Carrot, small           2-3

Garlic                         3 pods

Ginger                       1 tsp

Red lentils                120 gms

Olive oil                     2 tsp

Vegetable stock       3 cups

Salt & pepper

WHAT TO DO

  • Heat the oil and add ginger and garlic
  • Cut the onion, Spring onion and carrot and add to the oil
  • Save some Spring onion for garnish
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes
  • Add the lentils and cook for a minute or so
  • Add the stock and salt and cover to cook
  • Once it starts boiling, simmer for 10 minutes 
  • Turn off the heat once the lentils are completely cooked
  • Purée the mixture to a smooth soup
  • Season with pepper or other dried herbs
  • Garnish with Spring onion 
  • Enjoy!

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NOTES

  1. If you are not keen on making a smooth puréed soup, you can simply mash the lentils and have the soup. If you want to do that, ensure you cut the carrots and onions finely. Else, you can cut them into medium sized cubes.

This is my post for the September Cooking Carnival under the theme – Soups.

 

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 68