A post of a different type.
Well not so different, this one combines two things.. food and health.
Sometimes we don’t feel like cooking.. or eating for that matter. Food loses its appeal at times. Medications can do this often. But we have to eat still, those times we need to eat more carefully, if we are eating less we must eat smarter.
but we must eat.
Soup is good. Easy to make and you can have tiny amounts more often. For those times when it is hard to eat, eating smaller amounts is easier.. but as I just said.. more often.
So it has to taste good, and be good for you. There are lots of food we can eat, some has benefits for some things.
Lets look at a mostly veggie soup.
Broth. The broth is key, you can have a great selection of yummy veggies in your soup, but if the both is watery.. the soup is not great.
Sweet potatoes are very good for you. They have a lot of flavour too, so what about a soup. Something that is good for you on those days you don’t want to fuss much and maybe don’t feel like eating.
Some veggies are really good for you. Cooking in a soup though, they lose their goodness sometimes.
Making a soup that has a nice broth, with not much work is the trick. Then some veggies do not have to be overcooked They can be added to the soup later. After the broth is made
Tricky things can be added to the broth, they are good for you too. Things like baby spinach, kale, beans… eggs.
take a big sweet potato and peel it ( I know, the peel is where all the goodness is, but it is hard to wash well too) peel it and wash it and then grate half of it. Chop the second half into tiny cubes and put aside, perhaps back in the fridge until we are ready for it.
Parsnips (good for you) (washed and chopped). the more things you add the more flavour. Garlic too, three or four cloves. (garlic is good for you)
Chop up some mushrooms of your choice, but yes… wash them. you know what they grow in, wash them well. chop very fine, but keeps some for later that are not chopped so fine. Oh, mushrooms are good for you too.
all these veggies are for broth, to add flavour, not to enjoy later, we will get to that.
Start with a splash of olive oil.. yes I know when you heat it, it loses some of its goodness, but it tastes better than other oils and it is good for you. brown the veggies, this adds flavour, not clear, not for a bit, but brown them over a med high heat.
You can buy tins of veggie stalk, or powder, but water will work too, add 6 to 8 cups now and simmer. Water or veggie stalk. Add more if the veggies are not covered.
Whist this simmers clean some spinach. chop it fine and put it back in the fridge.. oh heck add some to the broth now too. Simmers though, not boils…
Stir the soup and add a tablespoon of horse raddish. Yup, it adds a nice acid balance to the soup and tis good for you.
Some ginger root grated is good too. Quite a bit.
Those tough parts of broccoli.. the stalks, chop them up and toss them in, keep the tops for later.. yes cleaned, choped fine and back into the fridge.
you can do the same with some cauliflower, but broccoli is better for you. Very good for you.
now some herbs.. we are going to strain this, so toss in some rosemary, quite a bit. Sage is always nice in soup. Fresh is better, but dry is good, if fresh, wash super good. Tumeric is a strong flavour to add too but also good for you.
Chop up a wack of parsley, I mean a lot, no add more than that…. after it is washed very well. toss it in, keep some for later too and yes in the fridge for now. I am picky about that. Veggies not simmering are in the fridge. Dark green leaf lettuce, chop some up and toss it in.
Do you need another cup of water? Add it when you do.
If you have a stick blender, puree up the soup after it has cooked for 10 minutes or so, keep simmering and add water when needed. Taste it, is it good or watery? if watery add more veggies chopped fine.
or some herbs, Basil is great, fresh. It loses its flavour fast though, so it can be added at the second stage.
a splash of worcester sauce is great in soup. Or miso. Miso is good for you too.
ok, after simmering for 30 minutes.. strain it off, yes all that mush is not really great now, the flavour is gone, you can squeeze it in the strainer to get every drop though. It is ok if some of the pulp squeezes through, roughage. Also very important.
Now we sort of start over.
but it hasn’t been hard to do so far.
Put the broth aside, more olive oil in a pan and warm it, toss in another chopped onion or leek (pssst, leaks are good for you), the small chunks of sweet potato and brown them.
add the broth and simmer until the potato is almost cooked. Add the broccoli tops you chopped fine.
When it is finished add the spinach and basil if you want. Lots of both. You can add dill too or instead of basil, dill is nice in soup. Did I mention to wash it?
tis time to add some pepper if you wish and salt to taste. If you added a lot of ginger you may not want the pepper.
You can scramble some eggs in a tiny dish add a bit of chives, salt and pepper to them and drop them slowly into the soup tablespoon by table spoon.. this adds some protein.
Beans are good too, cheat and add some frozen ones at the last moment. Lima beans are a great choice.. yes good for you. Frozen peas as well.. yes also good for you. Add lots of them. There is good protein here and fiber.
Adding the spinach, basil and more parsley now, beans too, so they don’t cook long, the hot broth will be enough.
so why all the protein hints.. and washing and washing and food storage.
sometimes meds can mess up the desire to eat. Some meds are really known for this. Strong tasting food can help, but nutrition is very important. When the desire to eat is gone we stop eating.. food is strength, energy, it is what we run on.
We have a lot to choose from, some food choices are healthy obviously, but some foods too are good for some things, as I said up there… higher in this post. The foods in this soup are good when Chemo is the cause for a lack of desire to eat. The foods in this soup help you fight, the ones I said were good for you. Fighting is good.
Because defenses are lowered, food care is important, lots of washing and careful storage.
Eating is good too. But eating smart is a better fight.
Think I will be posting a lot of recipes like this for a while.
oh.. dessert.. we need dessert.
Custard is a good thing to have prepared. lots of protein in it. Tastes good too and can be made in the microwave so easily. Eggs have lots of protein, so does milk.. tis a good food to eat.
3/4 cup of milk
3 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
dash of salt
warm the milk to scalding
beat the eggs with the sugar and vanilla
add the warm milk to this mixture slowly to temper it, very slowly, stiring.
pour it into a microwave dish or small cups, if you butter them it adds a nice taste.
cook in the microwave uncovered for about 8 minutes at a medium low heat setting. Poke with a knife to see if they are done, it should come out clean.
Spinkle with nutmeg. Sprinkle lots.
now eat darn it. This is part of the fight. 🙂