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Recipe: Carrot & Ginger Soup

I spend a lot of time in front of the computer. You too? This tasty recipe is for you then! Carrots have a relaxing, cooling effect on the eyes, so this soup is particularly healing after long days of having your eyes locked on the screen. Topped with Roasted Chickpeas, this light, nourishing dinner is a win-win balance of texture, flavor, and visual beauty too.

Image by Cara Brostrom

WHAT YOU NEED

4 cups water
2 tsp coriander powder
1 lb carrots
2-3 inches fresh ginger root
2 tsp ghee, olive oil, or sunflower oil, plus 2 tsp more for drizzling
dash each of salt and pepper
Roasted Chickpeas

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

In a medium saucepan, begin to boil 4 cups water and coriander powder. Coarsely chop the carrots and add to the pot. Peel and roughly dice the ginger root and add to the pot. Boil for 15-20 minutes, covered, until carrots are tender. Add ghee or oil, salt, and pepper. With an immersion hand blender, blend until smooth, or transfer to a carafe blender and cool for 2-3 minutes before blending on low, then high until smooth. Ladle into 4 soup bowls, topping each with a 1/4 cup Roasted Chickpeas and 1/2 tsp ghee or oil.


ROASTED CHICKPEAS

Everyday Ayurveda_Roasted Chickpeas.jpg

WHAT YOU NEED

2 cups cooked chickpeas (two 16-oz cans)
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp Spring Spice Mix
1 tsp cumin powder
dash of salt
2 tsp sunflower oil

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Rinse and drain the chickpeas well. Wrap them in a clean towel and shake them to get the excess water off, then place them in a large bowl. Sprinkle the vinegar, spices, salt, and oil over them. Mix together with your hands, rubbing the savory ingredients well into the chickpeas.

Spread the chickpeas on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. When the chickpeas are lightly browned, remove them from the oven. (If you prefer them crunchy, bake for up to 50 minutes – but don't forget to stir, and watch to make sure they don't blacken.) Allow them to cool before storing in an airtight container at room temperature.

Alternatively, Roasted Chickpeas are also wonderful hot out of the oven, used as a garnish. This recipe will yield one extra cup to be stored after garnishing Carrot Ginger Soup.


SPRING SPICE MIX

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

Dry roast the coriander, fenugreek, and cumin seeds in a heavy-bottomed pan until you can smell them, just a few minutes. Cool completely. Combine them with the rest of the spices and grind to uniform consistency in a coffee grinder dedicated to spices, or by hand with a mortar and pestle. Using a teaspoon or a funnel, transfer the spice mix to a small shaker jar with an airtight lid for storage.

WHAT YOU NEED

1 tbsp whole coriander seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tbsp whole cumin seed
1 tbsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp ginger powder
1 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
pinch of clove powder

*Notes: I did not want to have so many extra, so I cut the chickpea recipe in half. Also, I used Grapeseed oil, as I did not have Sunflower oil on hand. I would imagine you could use any cooking oil you prefer, like Sesame or Olive.

In terms of the cumin and Spring Spice Mix, if you do not have all these ingredients on hand, simply apply the same roasting technique to the chickpeas, instead tossing them first in salt, pepper and olive oil, and substituting some fresh-squeezed lemon juice for the vinegar. This version will have a lighter, simpler, but still delicious flavor that will pair well with pretty much any soup.

As for the soup itself, fresh ginger is strong and "spicy". I would maybe use a little less next time, but this is up to your personal taste. Regardless, be sure to use fresh ginger root versus dry powder as it will offer a brighter flavor and, as is with everything fresh/raw, you'll receive more of it's healing benefits.


Recipe from: The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook by Kate O’Donnell © 2015 by Kate O’Donnell. Photographs © 2015 by Cara Brostrom.