This blog is teaching me a lot about balance. Balance is not eating three pieces of cake between the hours of noon and 4PM, and then skipping dinner because I am too full of cream cheese frosting and crashing hard from a sugar high. Balance is not making my husband eat the same meal several times in one week (although I don’t think he really minds). Balance is learning to carve out the brain space for this new hobby, endeavor, whatever you might call it, without letting it consume me completely. Balance has always been a difficult thing for me to achieve. I know I’m not alone in that, of course. And for all the mantras and methods and systems that people use to bring about their own sense of balance…I’m a little lacking. But one thing that has always helped me quiet the noise of the outside world is cooking.
I understand how to move and be and act in the kitchen. It’s my space where I can be as extravagant or as pared down as I want. And in those moments of chaos in life, where I feel like I just. can’t. even, there is something simple and calming about being in the kitchen and making a pot of soup. It might not teach me all I need to know about balance, but when I’m done I’ll at least have something warm, comforting, and good for me to eat while I sit and mull it over.
Easy Carrot Ginger Soup
Servings: 4 Time: 40 MINUTES
This soup is a great bridge between winter and spring. It’s got the warmth and comfort factor that you’d expect from a soup, but also a freshness and kick that makes you daydream of spring. The smaller you cut your vegetables the faster this soup will be on the table, so if you’re really into chopping you could probably be finished in under 30 minutes.
2 T neutral oil
2 T chopped ginger
½ yellow onion, diced
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp ground turmeric
1 lb carrots cut into ½ inch coins
2 C vegetable broth
1 ½ C water
Juice of one lime
Optional garnishes: Yogurt and Mint Chimichurri (recipe below)
Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and ginger and cook stirring frequently until onions are soft, about seven minutes.
Add carrots and kosher salt and turmeric and cook for an additional five minutes.
Add broth and water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes or until carrots are fork tender.
Blend with an immersion blender or in batches in a jar blender.
Add lime juice and season to taste with salt.
Serve with optional garnishes.
Servings: 1 CUP Time: 5 MINUTES
I find a bowl of soup, even a really delicious one, can sometimes become a little monotonous to eat. This kind of intensely-flavored sauce can really help in that department. Of course this is also great stirred into pasta, draped over grilled or roasted meats of any kind, or mixed with yogurt for a quick dip. Also eggs, great on eggs.
1 C mint leaves, packed
1 C parsley, packed
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
¼ tsp kosher salt
2 tsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp honey
1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
1 T water
In a food processor or blender add all ingredients and process until combined. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. If you want a thinner sauce, you can add more water, a teaspoon at a time until you’ve reached the desired consistency.