Monday, February 15, 2010

Coconut Carrot Curry Soup

I stole this post from my new blog, Rawk Out, which chronicles the addition of raw foods to my diet. Enjoy!

Coconut Carrot Curry Soup

One of the first raw soups I made was a Coconut Curry soup. The recipe I used was from a book called Raw Foods For Busy People by Jordan Maerin. The book is a thin paperback, and at first glance, might be overlooked, which is a shame, because it is packed with excellent information for a new raw foodist, as well as some great recipes.
This recipe involved opening up a Thai coconut to get the milk and the meat. I know what you're thinking - isn't that and advanced technique? Well, yes and no, really. There are some excellent, informative videos on how to open a Thai coconut on line, on being this video from the Renegade Health Show: go(coco)nuts!!
This is a Thai coconut:
Inside is the round nut which has the milk and meat in it. To get to it, you cut off the white husk, and use the heel of your knife to break the shell open:
Here's the meat and milk after I scraped it out of the shell:
The meat is very soft, almost gelatinous, and the milk, is actually a thin liquid with a mild coconut flavor (I actually made coconut "ice cream" from one on Friday which was soooo delicious, but that's for another post)....

The soup had grated carrots, the coconut milk and meat, diced onion, juice of a lime or 2, powdered ginger, curry powder and cilantro in it. I used my new Blend-Tec blender, which is a high speed blender, that can process just about anything, to process it all up (except cilantro).
After blending it all together, I added the chopped cilantro. The soup was spicy and delicious. The spice of the ginger and curry powder really warmed the body. I will definitely make this soup again :)
Try something raw today!

Soup JouMou

This soup is a popular soup in Haiti. It traditionally has pumpkin in it, as well as beef and other aromatic vegetables. Flavored with ginger, allspice and garlic, the soup is particularly warming.
I recently made a vegan version of the soup for a client of mine. Instead of pumpkin I used butternut squash, carrots and kale. I added in quinoa to boost the protein level and make it more "complete" nutritionally. I finished it off with lime juice.
It was so delicious, that I in turn went home and made it for my family to eat.
In my Soup Joumou, on top of the ginger, garlic and allspice, I used butternut squash, carrots, kale and instead of quinoa, I used millet.
Millet is grain that you'll usually find in bird feed!! However, it is delicious, has a high B vitamin content, has a good protein load, and is gluten free, making it a good grain of choice for people who are wheat intolerant.
Soup Joumou when made in Haiti is pureed. I did not puree the versions that I made. Both the quinoa and millet added body to the soup and therefore, I felt pureeing was not necessary.
I cannot stress enough how delicious and warming this soup was. With each bite, you could feel the soup nourishing your body.

My fat of choice when sauteing the aromatics was coconut oil also referred to as coconut butter. Coconut oil is high in saturated fat, however, approximately 65% of the saturated fats are Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFA). These MCFAs are different from the long chain fatty acids because they are processed differently in the body than those fatty acids, and current research shows that these types of fatty acids are not responsible for coronary disease. MCFAs have also been shown to raise the body's metabolism level and could aid in weight loss. Other health benefits of coconut oil include antibacterial and antiviral properties.

Beautiful, curly kale
The soup, cooking, after the addition of the millet:

The finished soup, delicious!
Email me for the recipe :)