Creamy, Delicious Soup ~ Gluten-free and Dairy-free Too!
Have you figured out by now I love soups and other one-pot meals? Plus, these types of meals always mean leftovers… and yep, we love leftovers!
This was originally.. simply.. Potato-Leek Soup. Bill is not super fond of pureed soups but being an agreeable sort he ate it and said he enjoyed it. Later that same week on a cool, rainy night I was re-heating some for dinner and remembered I also had steamed broccoli leftover from the night before. It just seemed brilliant to throw it in the soup, and voila! … Potato-Leek & Broccoli Soup was born. I love this comforting soup and so does Bill.
Since his heart event I had put aside recipes that call for dairy milk or cream to avoid the saturated fat, preferring the fat in our diet come from healthier sources such as nuts, seeds and olive oil. This is especially true since I’ve learned dairy fat is also inflammatory, which is known to cause plaque buildup in our arteries. But recently I’ve discovered the magic of cashew cream! Oh the possibilities! Now those creamy, rich and delicious recipes we used to love are back on the table.
Cashew nuts contain 5 grams of protein per ounce and are loaded with essential minerals. They are also rich in heart healthy fats and high in dietary fiber. They’re especially high in magnesium which is essential for heart health.
So with great anticipation I kitchen tested this old favorite with my newly found method of recreating that creamy goodness with cashew cream. Happily it was delicious! And I feel very clever. Try this if you haven’t and you will too!
1 bunch broccoli, cut into small bite-sized pieces, including peeled stalk (see Notes)
1 teaspoon of olive oil
Crushed red pepper to your taste
1 cup raw cashews (or 2 cups milk, 1% lowfat)
Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat until hot.
Add leeks; saute 2-3 minutes.
Add garlic; saute 2 to 3 minutes, or until garlic is light brown--careful not to burn.
Increase heat to medium high. Add wine, bring to a boil, scraping up any brown bits and boil until the wine is reduced to about 2 tablespoons.
Add potatoes, broth, salt and pepper; and return to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
While potatoes are simmering, prepare cashew cream (instructions below).
When potatoes are tender, puree in batches in a blender or food processor and return to your saucepan.
Stir in cashew cream and heat until hot, stirring frequently.
While the soup is heating, place chopped broccoli, teaspoon of olive oil and crushed red pepper in a separate pot. Add enough water to cover the bottom about a half inch. Once it begins to boil, steam for 5 minutes and remove from heat.
Stir steamed broccoli including any remaining liquid into soup and serve.
TO MAKE CASHEW CREAM:
Soak cashews in plenty of water for several hours or overnight.
Drain cashews and place in blender with 2 cups of fresh water and blend until creamy (I use my NutriBullet).
We get at least 3 entree meals that feed both of us from this soup. It freezes well and you can make it ahead without the broccoli. We prefer the broccoli to be fresh and a little al dente, so my preference is to make the soup and before adding the broccoli, I place two-thirds into freezer containers and set aside. I then steam enough broccoli for the meal each time I serve it. That way the broccoli is always fresh, green and delicious!