It’s no wonder that one of the coldest months of the year; January is also National Soup Month. The heated broth warms your insides!! Soup actually started as a means to preserve food for a longer period of time and later evolved with the addition of meat and vegetables as a way to keep these ingredients warm.
Now we can enjoy soup homemade in a can (Umm, umm, good Campbell’s soup has been around since 1869), frozen or even dried. We can eat it in a soup bowl, in a cup, the inside of a pumpkin or squash and even in a make-shift bread bowl. Slurping is a given!
Soup is one of those meals that you don’t really need a recipe to make it great. Start with a veggie broth (low or regular sodium, depending on your preference) and add to it some Colorado beans and as many different kinds of vegetables as you would like from your local grocer.
Potatoes are an excellent addition!
Winter is a great time to make hearty soups with potatoes, especially since they are in-season in Colorado all year long. I recently made a recipe with several of them including; mini yams, purple sweet potatoes and Yukon golds.
Soup is a bowl of nutrition!!
The mini yams are an excellent, excellent, excellent source of Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, potassium and fiber (20% of our daily recommended amount). The natural chemicals responsible for the bright purple color in purple sweet potatoes, contains the anti-oxidant anthocyanin, which has anti-inflammatory and cancer-fighting properties.
I also added a bunch of vegetables including purple kohlrabi. Kohlrabi is a German word; Kohl means “cabbage” and rabi means “turnip.” These are a type of cruciferous vegetables, which means they are cancer-fighters. They also pair well with Indian spices.
One of my favorite winter comfort soups is the potato, leek and corn chowder below. If you haven’t tried leeks before, they are a “blown up” version of a green scallion. Leeks are an excellent source of Vitamin K and a great source of B6, folate, iron and Vitamin C. Plus they contain allium, the same phytonutrient found in garlic that helps boost our immune system. Make sure you include the whole leek and not just the white part as the green part contains the most active nutrients.
Potato, Leek and Corn Chowder
- 1-2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- 1 medium yellow or white onion, diced
- 1 large leek, chopped (cut off ends of greens)
- 2 stalks of celery, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt
- Dash of pepper
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 4 medium Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 3 tablespoons whole wheat flour (to thicken soup)
- 4 cups vegetable broth (use low or no-sodium if desired)
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups frozen corn
- 1 can full-fat coconut milk (can use regular cream or lite coconut milk to lower fat content)
- 1-2 limes, quartered
- Salt and pepper to taste
Making the recipe:
- Heat olive oil and a pinch of salt over medium heat in a large pot. Add onions and leeks and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
- Add celery, bell pepper, garlic, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Sauté for 5-6 minutes.
- Add potatoes and carrots and mix well.
- Next, stir in flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add vegetable broth and bay leaf. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer.
- Cook for 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are softer.
- Add corn, return to a boil then reduce heat to simmer again and cook until all vegetables are tender.
- Remove from heat and remove bay leaf.
- Add the coconut milk and stir well.
- Blend ½ of the recipe in a blender on puree setting or use an immersion blender to combine. Add back to the remaining recipe in the pot.
- Serve in a bread bowl and if desired sprinkle in ¼ slice of lime.
Creamy and sweet, yum! Plus it is an excellent source of fiber, potassium and iron!
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