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Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato Soup

butternutsweetpotatosoup6I was gluttonous this weekend. Like the many other people in the US, I spent Sunday night watching TV and eating classic Super Bowl foods. I had a chicken finger sub, nachos with sour cream and guacamole, potato chips, and tall silver cans of Sixpoint Sweet Action. This would have been a fine exception to my usual diet, but on Friday, I had a meal at Do or Dine that involved deep-fried deviled eggs and a foie gras doughnut (a classic sugar doughnut from Dough filled with fruit preserves and foie gras).

The weekend was worth every bite, but my body is sluggish and swollen. I need to clean up my diet with home-cooked meals that cut down on dairy and bread, and I’m starting with a butternut squash and sweet potato soup that’s full of pureed vegetables. (Trust me, it tastes better than it sounds.) I made a big pot of it Sunday afternoon before Super Bowl festivities began for quick, healthy dinners this week.

butternutsweetpotatosoup1The squash and potatoes are naturally sweet, and once they combined with carrots, celery, onion, and a quart of low-sodium vegetable broth, they simmered into a rich, dairy-free soup. Continue Reading →

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Recipe Rookie: Carrot Soup

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After a weekend of parties, movies, and a trip to Teddy Roosevelt’s house in Oyster Bay, I spent Monday winding things down and preparing for the week. As I was cleaning items out of the refrigerator in the morning, I discovered that I had a pound of unused carrots on the bottom shelf. I turned to the New York Times’ Recipes for Health, where recipes are broken down by main ingredient and, as the title of the website section suggests, they’re good for you.

A pureed carrot soup looked like a perfect option. I had most of the ingredients on hand, and other than peeling and chopping two pounds of carrots, preparation was simple. You can find the recipe here and some photos from my adventure after the jump. Continue Reading →

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Sunday Soups

I’ve spent the past two Sundays making variations on Alice Waters’ Minestrone Soup, outlined in her invaluable book The Art of Simple Food. It’s a straightforward recipe that gives you the freedom to improvise based on what’s available at the farmers’ market that day. Making soup from scratch also serves as a wonderful escape on a cold Sunday afternoon. Putting on headphones and catching up on podcasts while cutting vegetables lets you forget about impending elections and financial chaos for a little while. Continue Reading →