Spicy Tomato, Carrot, Celery, and Apple Soup Recipe
This nutritious soup takes just over an hour to prepare (excluding the chore of washing up!). If you have a blender, it saves a lot of time if you pulp the vegetables first so that they cook quicker.
- 1.5 pounds (0.7kg) tomatoes, halved
- 16 ounces (0.45 kg) celery, cut into 3 to 4 inch pieces
- 1 medium-sized onion, cut into 4 pieces
- Several cups of water to add to get the desired consistency
- 2 to 3 teaspoons hot chili powder
- 1 teaspoon or 1/2 clove dried or fresh garlic
- 20 leaves or 4 heaped teaspoons fresh or dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1/2 cup "soup mix" of lentils, chickpeas, rice, and barley soaked in water overnight
- 3 or 4 sweet or cooking apples (optional)
- 6 sprigs oregano (optional)
- 5 whole black peppercorns
- 4 medium sized carrots, diced
- Put the soup mix into a bowl, and cover with water. Soak overnight, then drain the and rinse. You can also add rolled oats or dry coconut as a thickening for the soup.
- Wash all vegetable ingredients in cold water.
- Peel and remove all blemishes, spots, and yellowed leaves from the vegetables and dice into 2" pieces. Halve the tomatoes without removing the seeds, quarter the onion, and dice the celery. Drop the tomato chunks one by one into the blender. Repeat for the celery, onion, soup mix, and apples. You wont be able to fit all the ingredients into the blender, so blend portions at a time. Blend to the desired consistency, i.e. lumpy or smooth.
- While blending, add a cup of water to the blender. If you don't do this, sometimes what happens is that everything gets stuck to the walls of the blender and the blades just spin in air. While blending, there should be a "whirlpool" effect at the surface of the contents of the blender and everything should be spiraling downwards towards the blades. If the mixture seems to be stagnating on top and the blender motor sounds as if it is struggling, simply add more water. My blender has a 550 watt rating, so I throw tomatoes and celery into it whole—if your blender has a lower power rating, then chop the vegetables into smaller pieces to avoid stressing and overloading the motor.
- Add the garlic, chili power, and herbs to the mix and continue to blend.
- Empty the contents of the blender jug into a saucepan. Add water, if needed. You can make really thick soup, sort of like a concentrate, and then add water when heating up before eating. Stir thoroughly, bringing to a boil and simmering for 5 minutes. It's important to stir constantly—otherwise, the soup will stick to the bottom of the pot and burn, spoiling the flavor. Soup will also boil over once it reaches boiling point, so turn down the heat when it starts bubbling.
- When it's done, allow to cool, stirring every so often to avoid a skin forming on the surface.
- Stir before serving or storing to distribute any fibrous material from the vegetables through the mix.
Using Up Leftovers and Saving Money
Soup is a great way of using up leftovers. You know that dusty stuff at the bottom of the cereal or muesli bag which no one likes? This can go into the blender to thicken the soup. You can also use old vegetables like carrots which have become somewhat rubbery and other other odds and ends from the refrigerator. If you have any windfall apples, they can be sliced, cored, and added to the soup to give it a nice sweet and savory effect.
How Long Can I Store This Soup For?
This soup can be stored in a fridge for two weeks. However, I reckon it's important to sterilize the bowl or other container with vinegar and also give the lid a wipe with vinegar too. I normally add about 1/4 cup of vinegar to the bottom of the bowl which probably soaks through the soup and helps to keep it. Then, as you use the soup, keep ladling from the top until you get to the bottom so your always uncovering a new surface rather than scooping down on one side.
You can freeze it indefinitely—however, the water and solids tend to separate out, so it will need lots of stirring.
© 2013 Eugene Brennan