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Chickpeas, sweet potato, zucchini, tomato, carrots, celery and

Chickpeas, sweet potato, zucchini, tomato, carrots, celery and onion give this mildly sweet, nutrient-packed soup heft. Photo Credit: Marge Perry

VEGETABLE CHICKPEA SOUP

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

2 ribs celery, chopped

2 medium carrots, cut in 1⁄4-inch dice

2 cloves garlic, minced

1⁄2 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary

1⁄2 teaspoon dried oregano

1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme

1 pound sweet potato, peeled and cut in 1⁄2-inch dice

8 plum tomatoes (about 2 pounds), chopped

4 cups unsalted vegetable broth

12 ounces zucchini, cut in 1⁄2-inch pieces

1 (15-ounce) can low-sodium chickpeas, drained and rinsed

3⁄4 teaspoon salt

 

1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium high. Add the onion, celery, carrots, garlic, rosemary, oregano and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, until somewhat softened, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the sweet potato, tomatoes and broth and bring to a boil; immediately reduce to a simmer and cook until the tomatoes break down and the potato begins to soften, about 12 minutes. Add the zucchini and chickpeas and cook 10 minutes. Transfer 4 cups of the soup to a blender or food processor and puree; add back to the soup, stir well and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 297 calories, 10 g protein, 55 g carbohydrates, 13 g fiber, 6 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 652 mg sodium

TIP: To give your vegetable soup a creamier, richer base, puree one-third to one-half the cooked soup and stir it back in.

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HEARTY LENTIL-DITALINI SOUP

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

1 green bell pepper, cut in 1⁄4-inch dice

2 ribs celery, chopped

2 carrots, cut in 1⁄4-inch dice

1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin

1⁄2 teaspoon ground coriander

1 cup lentils

2 (14.5-ounce) cans petite diced tomatoes

1 cup ditalini pasta

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

 

1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium high. Add the onion, green pepper, celery, carrots, cumin and coriander and cook, stirring occasionally, until somewhat softened, about 5 minutes. Add the lentils and 6 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer gently until the lentils are nearly cooked, about 25 minutes. Add the tomatoes and return to a boil; stir in the ditalini and cook until the pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes. Season with the salt and pepper and serve. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 353 calories, 18 g protein, 69 g carbohydrates, 10 g fiber, 1 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 511 mg sodium

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SMOKEY SHERRIED BLACK BEAN SOUP

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

5 cloves garlic, minced

2 ribs celery, chopped

2 carrots, cut in 1⁄4-inch dice

1 jalapeño pepper, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1⁄2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1⁄2 cup sherry

3 (15-ounce) cans low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed

4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄2 cup light sour cream

1 teaspoon lime juice (plus optional wedges)

Pinch cayenne

 

1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium high. Add the onion, garlic, celery, carrots, jalapeño, cumin and paprika and cook, stirring occasionally, until somewhat softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the sherry and cook until it is nearly evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add the beans, broth, salt and 4 cups water and simmer 15 minutes.

2. Remove 2 cups of the soup from the pot and puree; return to the pot, stir and cook another 2 minutes until the soup is heated through.

3. Combine the sour cream, lime juice and cayenne and dollop over the soup just before serving. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 330 calories, 15 g protein, 48 g carbohydrates, 17 g fiber, 6 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 735 mg sodium

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