Trees keep dropping leaves, temperature keeps dropping lower, and we keep adding new products to warm you up. This time around, we have a trio of heartwarming, healing, vegan and delicious soups for you. This might be one of the coziest ways of having a light but substantial meal, and still hitting all those nutrients, vitamins, minerals, you need this season.
1. Kabocha, Butternut Squash and Quinoa Curry
This pumpkin soup is a seasonal favourite, highly charismatic and extremely flavourful due to the curry-spices. Kabocha squash is a cute green Japanese pumpkin, but in taste and texture actually close to sweet potato. Butternut squash belongs to the same family as pumpkin. The orange flesh is high in beta-carotene, making it not only easy on the eyes, but also incredibly good for them. It decreases risk of vision loss, soothes eye inflammation and makes it less likely for us to get an eye infection. It even reduces the oxidative stress put on your eyes from blue light emitted by the sun and our dearly beloved screens. Beta-carotene translates as vitamin A, and one cup of pumpkin happens to contain over double the amount of your recommended daily vitamin A intake. Pumpkin is free-radical-neutralizing, and contains more potassium than bananas. It contains magnesium which works relaxing. And did you know that quinoa contains all the nine (!!!) amino acids? Quite a mouthful this one, but because this soup is so high in fiber, it will keep you feeling nice and full for longer.
2. Cauliflower and Lima-bean Soup with Red Quinoa & Smoked Paprika Oil
This one is creamy, fluffy and so delicious. We should not underestimate cauliflower, which can sometimes get overshadowed by its green cousins broccoli or kale. That doesn’t do justice to a vegetable that houses such a special combination of phytonutrients, and in quantity at least as many as other green members of the cruciferous vegetable fam. One cup of cauliflower contains 73% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C. It is high in antioxidants and fights inflammation at the foundation, operating at a genetic level. Cauliflower can reduce the risk of different types of cancer, especially breast cancer. It is chemo preventive, stalling early phases of cancer cell development and tumor growth. Lima beans you might know by the name of butterbeans, a name they owe to their texture. As a legume, they contain cholesterol-lowering fibre. Combined with the complex carbohydrates of the red quinoa, they make this soup into a great source of high-quality lean protein.
3. Shiitake and Vegetable Miso Soup
This soup is gold for vegetarians and vegans, as it provides a unique compound of vegetable-based qualities. First of all, taste wise it this soup is really special. Miso, as well as shiitake mushrooms, have a strong ‘umami’ flavour, the savoury fifth taste that is commonly known to be found in cheese and meat. Secondly, it’s a great source of plant-derived protein. Miso is actually Japanese for ‘fermented beans’. The beans in question are soybeans, which might have passed you by as debatable topic. Luckily we use an organic paste of beans that are not genetically-modified (so non-GMO), and that it is unlikely to affect estrogen levels at this quantity. Thirdly, the fermentation that this soup has going on makes it very healthy for your gut bacteria. It works like a probiotic, good for your digestive and immune system. Last but not least, this soup is super rich in vitamins B6 and B12, which are often believed to only be found in animal sources. The kombu seaweed that it contains also makes it high in iron. In Japan and China, people traditionally have a cup for breakfast to stimulate their energy and digestion in the morning. Something to try!