Archive for Soups and Stews


With the beginning of a new year, I have heard many people tell me they are going to start by detoxing themselves and then try to go onto a healthy eating plan. The detox programs range from the Master Cleanse, to Standard Process’s specially designed system, to several over-the-counter, everything you need for however many days, in a box type program. What really works? What is the healthiest way to rid our bodies of the toxins and chemicals that we are exposed to everyday?

While looking for a simple detox plan (I figured I could work up to the hard core ones), I found the WholeLiving magazine and the front cover of Jan 2010 boasts about a detox plan and recipes!

These recipes are for smoothies and soups that are to be eaten at breakfast and dinner. Some of the recipes require a juicer—which I don’t have—so those won’t be very useful. However, the idea as a whole has intrigued me and so I began looking for more juice/ smoothie recipes for detoxing. Here is the thought behind the WholeLiving detox plan:

 “Liquid meals for breakfast and dinner are less taxing on the digestive system than solid foods, says “Clean” author Alejandro Junger, M.D. — who designed the recipes on the following slides — and they allow the body to focus on cleansing itself. ”

On the Vegetarian Times site, I found several recipes that require NO intricate machinery! Some of the recipes look like they might take a couple extra steps to create—I would not be able to throw all of the ingredients into a juicer, but would rather cook, then blend—but not having to go out and buy an expensive juicer makes me very happy.

I also have been looking for some other soup recipes because the ones provided were a little too fancy for my taste; what do you think? Good Housekeeping has a great soup diet that I think could be used for the soup part of the detox program. You could add more or less veggies depending on what you have and what you like. Also, the additions make it fun and keep you from getting bored with the same tasting soup. I only tried the vegetarian varieties, but they were great and I think I could alter some of the others to also be vegan/ vegetarian.

I think I’ll try this detox plan (the soup and smoothie one), subbing in the smoothies and soups that I found, and leave the more extreme programs to those braver than I! Anyone want to join me?!


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Creamy (heathly!) soup

While I was deep conditioning my hair (it gets so dry in the winter!), I decided to whip up a batch of creamy, delicious soup for lunches and dinners. I love how there isn’t any cream in here so I don’t feel bad about eating it, resolutions and all being considered.

Broccoli Soup

 Serves 4-6

-2 tbsp olive oil

-1/2 medium onion, chopped

-2 celery stalks, chopped

-2 cups vegetable broth

-1 medium to large potato, peeled and cut into pieces

-6 cups frozen broccoli florets

-2 tbsp all purpose flour

-salt/ pepper to taste

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a medium size sauce pot. Add onion and celery; sauté for 5-7 minutes until onion is translucent. Add broth, potato, and broccoli to the pot. The broccoli will not fit perfectly into the measuring cups- don’t worry about the gaps that appear. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the potato pieces are soft. Mash or hand blend according to your consistency preference. As the pot is simmering, mix remaining 1 tbsp oil and flour over medium heat to form a roux. It should form a light brown mixture that looks like wet sand. Add a small amount of broccoli soup to the pan with the roux mixture. This ensures that you will get all the roux from one pan to the other. Once the soup and roux are thoroughly combined, stir the mixture into the large pot of soup. Stir and heat until thickened. Season with salt/ pepper. Serve with your favorite toppings such as cheese, crackers, or sour cream. Enjoy!

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Warm chili for cold nights

I can’t believe that it has almost been a whole month since I started this blog — where has the time gone? I guess this is what happens during the busy holiday season…


With the snow falling in Texas last week, I thought it time to get some warm soups and stews bubbling away on my stove for the cold nights that will be with us for the next few months. One of my favorite dishes is chili — you can dress it up with toppings, leave it as is, or, my new favorite way to eat it, with a bun and tofu hot dog. Chili dogs are so yummy! Here is my vegetarian chili recipe; I hope it warms you all winter long.

Meaty Chili

Serves 4-6

-Cooking spray

-2 tsp olive oil

-1 large onion, chopped

-1 ½ bell pepper, seeded and chopped (any color)

-2 garlic cloves, minced

-1 portabella mushroom, diced

-1 cup tomato sauce

-1 (15 oz) can crushed tomatoes

-2 (15.5 oz) cans kidney beans, drained

-1 tsp ground cumin

-1 tsp salt

-1 tsp hot pepper sauce (I use Franks)

-1 ½ tbsp dried oregano

-1 ½ tbsp distilled white vinegar

-1-3 tbsp chili powder (depending on the amount of heat you like)

-1 bay leaf

-ground black pepper to taste

 Spray the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray. Turn to low. Add tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes (do not drain), beans, cumin, salt, hot pepper sauce, oregano, vinegar, chili powder, and bay leaf to cooker. Heat oil in a fry pan over medium heat. Add onion, pepper, and mushroom and cook over medium heat until onion is translucent and the mushroom pieces have shrunk in size, about 5-7 minutes. During the last few minutes, add the garlic. Be careful that it doesn’t burn! Combine the vegetables with items already in the cooker and cover with lid. Cook for 6-8 hours. Season with pepper if desired. Top with crackers, cheese, sour cream or your favorite topping. Enjoy!

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