I am all for recipes with all kinds of ingredients and spices but, sometimes you want something quick and simple--that goes together without much effort. Like this Artichoke, Leek and White Bean Soup from The 4-Ingredient Vegan by Maribeth Abrams with Anne Dinshah. I did "cheat" slightly and toss in some fresh rosemary from the plant on my lanai. This soup isn't a "looker" but it is satisfying and full of the flavor of the sweet leeks, tangy artichoke hearts and creamy white beans. I left it partially unblended rather than pureeing it all for a heartier, more interesting soup.
The 4-Ingredient Vegan says, "The smooth texture and creamy richness of this fiber-packed soup provide the perfect backdrop for its sophisticated flavors. Look for frozen artichoke hearts at your local supermarket; although they can be hard to find, they are significantly higher in flavor than canned artichoke hearts, and superior in texture and overall quality too."
Artichoke, Leek, and White Bean Soup
The 4-Ingredient Vegan by Maribeth Abrams with Anne Dinshah
(Makes 8 Servings)
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3 leeks, white parts only, chopped & washed (see tip below)
2 packages (9 oz each) frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
1 carton (32 oz) or 4 cups low-sodium veggie broth
2 cans (15.5 oz each) great northern beans or other white beans
salt and ground black pepper
optional: lemon wedges
(optional: I added fresh rosemary)
Heat the oil in a heavy soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the leeks and cook and stir for about 7 minutes or until the leeks are tender and golden brown. Add the artichoke hearts and cook and stir for 5 minutes. Stir in the vegetable broth (and fresh rosemary). Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the beans. Cook for 10 minutes longer.
Remove from the heat . Process until smooth using a handheld blender. Alternatively, cool the soup until it's barely steaming; then process until smooth in batches in a blender and return to the pot. (If using a standard blender, don't fill blender cup more than 1/3 full during processing, or the steam could force off the lid.) (I pureed about 1/2 of the soup then added it back to the pot and heated through.) Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish each serving with a lemon wedge, if desired.
Cooking Tip: To prepare the leeks, cut off the root ends and the greens. Discard the roots and, if you like, save the greens for use in another recipe. Chop the white parts; then transfer them to a colander. Rinse them thoroughly under running water. Drain well before using.
Nutritional Info: Per Serving: calories: 184, protein: 10g, fat: 1g, carbs: 28g, fiber: 9g, sodium: 142mg
Notes/Results: While not the most gorgeous soup out there--especially in terms of color, the taste makes up for it. It's a very smooth and rich soup, filling without being too heavy. I added the rosemary because I love it paired with white beans and I thought the little spots of dark green would help break up the "beige-ish" color. It also went well with the rosemary-olive oil bread I served with the soup. This hearty vegan soup would please carnivores and veg-friendly alike, it goes together quickly and easily, is healthy and tastes great--I would make it again.
Let's check out the Souper Sundays kitchen where a few wonderful dishes await.
Graziana of Erbe in Cucina brings Creamy Soup with Gorgonzola and Mint and says, "I was worried about my horsemint, which produced very little during the summer, but now, with lower temperatures, it's full of tender leaves and new branches. I harvested a lot of mint, to to be dried and also frozen. And
because the weather, as well as aiding the mint, makes me crave for hot
soups, I used fresh mint and basil in this cream of vegetables and
Tigerfish of Teczcape - An Escape to Food made this White Bitter Melon Salad and says, "As bittermelon is "cooling" in nature, it helps to relieve "heat" within
the body, thus particularly useful as a counter-balance to the "yin" and "yang" in the body during summertime. ... If you cannot accept the bitterness of bittermelon, I suggest blanching
them especially if you use the green variety that is often more bitter
than the white."
Finally Janet of The Taste Space shares Kale Salad with a Raw Thousand Island Dressing and says, "The creaminess of my raw version of dressing is from cashews. The
deep tomato flavour comes from sun-dried tomatoes. Garlic and onion add
further ripples, while the vinegar brightens the dressing. The acidic
dill pickle brings this up a notch. The only trick is that the cashews
need to be soaked a few hours for easier blending."
Thanks to Graziana, Tigerfish and Janet for joining in this week. If you have a soup, salad or sandwich that you would like to share, just click on the Souper Sundays logo for all of the details.