African Groundnut Sweet Potato Stew


  • 2 cups/500 ml chopped onions
  • 2 Tbsp/30 ml vegetable oil
  • 3 cups/750 ml cubed sweet potatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp/2 ml cayenne
  • 2 tsp. /10 ml ginger
  • 1 tsp./ 5 ml cumin
  • 1 Tbsp/15 ml paprika
  • 1 Tbsp/15 ml fenugreek (this can be difficult to find, if you can't find it, let me know - I have quite a bit)
  • 1 tsp/5 ml salt (or to taste)
  • dash each cinnamon and clove
  • 4 cups/1 liter fresh or canned tomatoes (you can use diced or crushed)
  • 1 cup/250 ml apple juice or 1cup water with 1 Tbsp honey added (I usually add more water than this)
  • 3/4 cup/185 ml chunky peanut butter
  • 2 cups/500 ml sliced Jerusalem artichokes (optional - I haven't added these as I don't usually have them on hand)
  • 3 cups/750 ml cabbage or other dark leafy greens, chopped


In a good sized deep cooking pot, sauté the onions in oil until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add sweet potatoes, garlic and cayenne ; sauté, covered for 5 minutes
Add all the other ingredients except the peanut butter, Jerusalem artichokes, and cabbage/greens. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer about 10 minutes.
Remove 1/2 to 1 cup (125 to 250 ml) of the hot liquid from the pot, and combine it with the peanut butter into a creamy paste. Add the thinned peanut butter, Jerusalem artichokes and greens to the pot and simmer until the vegetables are tender..
Add more liquid if the stew is too thick and adjust seasonings to taste.

Additional notes: I usually add more spices than the recipe calls for, probably double and for those who like things more on the spicy side - additional cayenne or other peppers are nice. This is supposed to be served with injera (the spongy, sour Ethiopian bread) but rice is a decent substitute.

Artichoke and Garbanzo Stew


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. red chili flakes
  • 2 carrots (6-8 ounces total), chopped
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans (15 ounces) artichoke hearts (Trader Joe's are good), drained
  • and quartered
  • 1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 15-oz cans vegetable broth (or 4 cups)
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh sage (or about 1/2 tsp dried)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (I tend to use about 1/2 of a fresh lemon)


  • In 4-6 quart pot heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and 1 tsp salt and stir until onion becomes translucent, about 3 minutes.
  • Add garlic and chili flakes, and cook 1-2 minutes.
  • Add carrots, tomatoes, artichoke hearts, garbanzos and broth. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer with cover on about 20 minutes, until carrots tender.
  • Season with sage and lemon juice; add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve over hot cooked rice (or, add 1-2 cups water and 1/2 -1 cup rice in step 3. Cook until rice is done, maybe 25-30 minutes.)


Brazilian Black Bean Soup

Source: "Moosewood Cookbook" by Mollie Katzen

Time: overnight to soak the beans and 1 1/2 hours of cooking. (with canned beans, this can be reduced to 30 minutes.)
Servings: 6-8

This soup is thick, nutritious, and intricately flavored.


  • 2 cups dry black beans (or 4 cups cooked)
  • 4 cups water (none if using canned beans)
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 large onions, cubed
  • 10 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp cumin, ground
  • 2 to 2 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups orange juice
  • black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced (or 1 can tomatoes, drained)


  • sour cream (tofutti sourcream for lent)
  • cilantro
  • salsa
  • lime juice


With dried beans: Soak beans in plenty of water for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Drain and bring to a boil in 4 cups fresh water. Cover and simmer for 1 1/4 hours. In the last 30 minutes of cooking, stir-fry onion, garlic, cumin, and salt until the onion is translucent. Add this to the beans. Stir in orange juice, pepper, cayenne, and tomatoes. Puree all or some of the soup in a blender and return to pot. Simmer for 10 minutes more and serve.

Carrot Soup with Orange and Ginger

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
4-6 servings

Pale brown, knobby fresh ginger adds a note of exotic, sweet spiciness to soups and other dishes. Look for smooth, shiny ginger with no cracks in the skin. Before slicing, chopping, mincing or grating, remove the thin skin using a sharp knife or a vegetable peeler. To grate fresh ginger, use the finest rasps on a standard handheld grater or use a specially designed ginger grater; this small, flat ceramic or light metal tool has tiny, very sharp teeth.


  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 leeks, including tender green portions,
  • thinly sliced
  • 6 carrots, about 1 lb. total,
  • peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 red potato, about 1/2 lb., peeled and
  • coarsely diced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. peeled and minced or
  • grated fresh ginger
  • 5 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 tsp. grated orange zest
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste
  • Thin orange slices for garnish (optional)
  • Fresh mint sprigs for garnish (optional)


  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the leeks and sauté until just slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the carrots, potato and ginger and sauté until the vegetables are just softened, about 5 minutes more.
  2. Add the stock, cover partially and simmer until the vegetables are completely softened, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. In a blender or food processor, puree the soup in batches, leaving some texture, and return the soup to the pan. Alternatively, process with a stick blender in the pan until the desired consistency is reached. Set the pan over medium heat and stir in the orange juice and zest. Season with salt and white pepper.
  4. Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and garnish each serving with an orange slice and a sprig of mint.


Curried Red Lentil Soup with Dried Cherries and Cilantro


  • 2 tsp safflower oil (I use any)
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped ginger
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 large shallot, chopped (4Tbsp)
  • 2 diced carrots
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • Coarse salt
  • ¾ cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1/3 cup chopped dried cherries (I soak mine in hot water first)
  • 3 Tbsp. cilantro stems plus 3 Tbsp. leaves for garnish


  1. Heat oil over medium heat. Add ginger, garlic, shallot, and carrots, and cook, stirring often for about 7 min. Add curry powder, and cook for 1 min.
  2. Add salt, ½ cup coconut milk, 4 cups water, and lentils, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until lentils and carrots are tender, for about 8-10 min. Reserve 2 cups of soup, and puree the rest in a blender. Reheat after blending. Stir in reserved solids.
  3. Reserving some for garnish, stir cherries and cilantro stems into soup, and ladle into bowls. Swirl in remaining ¼ cup coconut milk, and garnish with cherries and cilantro leaves.

Gerontissa Markella's Lenten White Bean soup

Soak 1 package (about 1 lb) Northern White beans over night according to directions on package or in 8 cups water over night.

The next morning rinse beans thoroughly and add enough cold water to cover beans (6-8 cups).  Add 1 large chopped onion, a few stalks celery chopped, fresh bunch of dill, mint and 4-5 large carrots chopped.  Bring to a rolling boil and then simmer covered 3-4 hours.

Stir throughout process.  Add salt and pepper throughout to taste.


Iraqi Chickpea Soup


  • 1 c. dried chickpeas (or ~two cans) washed and soaked overnight in 9 cups of water
  • 2 Tbsp. Oil or butter
  • 2 medium sized onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 c. (approx. 1 bunch) chopped fresh coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Pepper
  • 1tsp. Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. Mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Cayenne

Bring the chickpeas with their water to a boil and then cook over medium heat for 1 1/2 hours.  While these are cooking, stir-fry the onions in the oil or butter until they begin to brown.  Add garlic and cilantro, then stir-fry for a further few moments.  Add this mixture along with the remaining ingredients to the chickpeas.  Cover and cook over medium heat for one hour or until the chickpeas are well done.
I usually blend this soup with a hand-held blender (a food processor or blender would work as well) as we like the texture better this way.  If using cans of beans the cooking time, especially at the end is reduced.

Krista's Split Pea Soup


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 potato, peeled and diced
  • 2 med. Carrots, chopped
  • 2 c. green split peas, dry
  • 1 t. dill
  • 2 t. thyme
  • 1 T. basil
  • 1 T. salt
  • ½ t. oregano
  • 2 t. garlic salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 8-10 c. water

Place all in pot. Simmer 2-3 hours (great in Crock Pot).

Lentil Soup With Pasta

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
4 servings


  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh sage
  • 2 cups lentils
  • 1 cup canned whole plum tomatoes, chopped,
  • with juice
  • 6 cups vegetable broth, plus more if needed
  • 1 Tbs. salt, plus more, to taste
  • 1/4 lb. tubettini, ditalini or other small soup
  • pasta
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Make the soup base
    In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the pancetta and sauté until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, carrot, celery and sage and sauté until the vegetables are softened, about 3 minutes.
  2. Cook the lentils
    Stir in the lentils and tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Increase the heat to high, add the 6 cups broth and bring to a boil. Add the 1 Tbs. salt, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, until the lentils are nearly tender, 30 to 40 minutes. Add more broth if the soup starts to dry out.
  3. Cook the pasta
    Add the pasta to the lentils. Cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until the pasta is not quite al dente, about 2 minutes less than the package instructions. The pasta will continue to cook in the heat of the soup. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve immediately.


Manhattan Clam Chowder


  • 2 med carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped OR ¼ bunch parsley, chopped
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 tsp. Better Than Bouillon vegetable bouillon
  • 3 cans chopped clams with their juice
  • 1 can sliced new potatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste

Saute vegetables in olive oil. Add tomatoes and clams (with their juice). Mix the 1 tsp. Better Than Bouillon with the boiling water and add to soup. Add new potatoes and heat through. Terrific the next day!

Mexican Shrimp and Scallop Soup

Serves 6


  • 1 T. oil (can omit oil by microwaving the onions and garlic, or by
  • substituting with margarine)
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 3 cups (or more) bottled clam juice
  • 1 - 15 oz. can white hominy, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup salsa verde (tomatillo salsa - check the Mexican food section
  • for an 8 oz. can)
  • 2 T. finely chopped sun dried tomatoes (like the ones from Costco)
  • 1 T. finely grated lime peel
  • 1 lb. uncooked shrimp
  • 1 lb. scallops (cut in half if they're too big)
  • 4 T. chopped cilantro


Heat oil (or margarine), add onion and saute 'til tender. Add garlic, stir 30 seconds. Add clam juice and next four ingredients, simmer 5 minutes. Add seafood and cilantro to tase. Simmer 'til seafood is cooked (shrimp should be pink when done), about 3 minutes. Serve with more cilantro, thinly sliced jalapeno, and lime wedges.



Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
4 servings

For the pesto:

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • 2 cups tightly packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or as needed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

For the soup:

  • 1/2 cup dried small white beans or 1 can (15 oz.) white beans
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, if large, and thinly sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 3/4 lb. tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 5 to 6 cups water or vegetable broth, or as needed
  • 4 small new potatoes, unpeeled, diced
  • 2 zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 1/4 lb. green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 2 cups chopped Swiss chard (optional)
  • 1/4 lb. macaroni or small shells
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. To make the pesto, preheat an oven to 350°F. Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and toast until they take on color and are fragrant, 5 to 8 minutes. Let cool. In a food processor, combine the nuts, basil and garlic. Pulse until the basil is chopped. Add the cheese and pulse to combine. With the motor running, pour in the 1/2 cup oil, a few drops at a time, until the mixture has the consistency of mayonnaise, adding more oil as needed. Season with salt and pepper. You will need 1/4 cup of the pesto for the soup.
  2. To make the soup, if using dried beans, pick over and discard any misshapen beans and stones. Rinse, drain and place in a pot with water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, boil for 2 minutes, then cover, remove from the heat and let stand for 1 hour. Drain and return to the pot with fresh water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until tender, 45 to 60 minutes. Add salt during the last 10 minutes of cooking. If using canned beans, drain and rinse well.
  3. In a large soup pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until softened and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the carrots and celery and cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, just a few minutes. Add the tomatoes and enough water to cover amply. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the tomatoes break down, about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, if desired, place half of the white beans in a food processor or blender with a little of the cooking liquid or, if using canned beans, a little broth. Puree until smooth. Add the potatoes, zucchini, green beans, white beans (including pureed, if using), Swiss chard (if using) and pasta to the pot and simmer until the vegetables and pasta are cooked, about 15 minutes. Stir often to prevent sticking. Swirl in the 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Remove from the heat and stir in the pesto. Ladle into warmed bowls and serve immediately.


Moroccan Lentil and Rice Soup


  • 3/4 c. lentils, washed and soaked overnight in 7 c. water (I usually don't soak mine, they cook really quickly)
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1/2 c. (approx. 1 bunch) chopped fresh coriander leaves (cilantro) – the recipe says to add the cilantro at the beginning, but I like it to be more fresh and so add it in at the end.
  • 1 tsp. Paprika
  • 1/4 c. rice (I usually use brown)
  • 2 tsp, salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Pepper
  • 1/2tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. Chili powder
  • 2 Tbsp. Flour, dissolved in 1/2 c. water (if you decrease the amount of water used for cooking, which I do, you don't have to add the flour as a thickener)
  • 4 Tbsp. Lemon juice


Bring lentils with their water, olive oil and paprika (and rice IF you are using brown rice) to a boil and then cover and cook over medium heat for 25 minutes. Add remaining ingredients except for the flour and lemon juice, then cook for another 20 minutes or until rice turns tender but is still whole. Remove from heat then slowly stir in flour and lemon juice. Bring back to a boil and then transfer to a serving bowl and serve hot.

Really Quick Spicy Pumpkin Soup

Contributed by Dr. Mary Ford, Professor, St. Tikhon's Seminary


  • 1 Tbs. minced garlic;
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbs. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 4 cups veg. broth
  • 1 can chick peas, rinsed
  • 1 can solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1 cup corn kernels, canned or frozen
  • 3/4 c. med-spicy salsa, or to taste


Heat oil in 3 qt. sauce pan.  Add garlic, chili powder, and cumin. Stir over med-low heat for 1 minute.  Add broth, increase heat, and then add chick peas, pumpkin, corn & salsa.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 min.  Ladle into soup bowls; on a non-fast day you can garnish with grated cheddar cheese and/or sour cream if desired. Might sound weird, but it's really tasty, quick & nutritious.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
6 servings.

Roasting the squash makes it easier to peel and seed, and deepens the flavor of its flesh, producing a richer, more flavorful soup.


  • 2 large butternut squashes, each 1 1/2 to 2 lb.
  • 1/3 cup hazelnuts
  • 6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) margarine
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 8 fresh sage leaves, shredded
  • 6 cups vegetable stock or canned broth
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Ground nutmeg, to taste, if needed
  • Pinch of sugar, if needed


  1. Preheat an oven to 400°F.
  2. Prick each squash with the tip of a knife so it won't explode when it bakes. Place the whole squashes on a baking sheet and roast until they feel somewhat soft to the touch and a knife penetrates the skin easily, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and, when cool enough to handle, cut in half lengthwise and remove and discard the seeds and fibers. Scoop out the pulp into a bowl and set aside.
  3. While the squashes are cooling, reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Spread the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant and the skins have loosened, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and, while still warm, place the nuts in a kitchen towel. Rub the towel vigorously to remove the skins; do not worry if small bits of skin remain. Chop and set aside.
  4. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the onions and half of the sage and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and translucent, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the stock and squash pulp, raise the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for a few minutes to combine the flavors. Remove from the heat.
  5. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender or food processor. Return to a clean saucepan. Alternatively, pass the soup through a food mill placed over the pan. Reheat gently over medium-low heat. Season with salt and pepper. If the squash is starchy rather than sweet, a little nutmeg will help. If the nutmeg doesn't give the proper flavor balance, add a pinch of sugar.
  6. Ladle into warmed bowls and garnish with the hazelnuts and the remaining sage. Serve immediately.


Spanish Pumpkin and Bean Soup

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
6-8 servings

This chunky soup is made even more interesting with the addition of diced pears and a classic Catalan picada thickener of garlic, almonds and bread. In Morocco, lentils might be used instead of chickpeas or white beans, and sometimes rice or braised greens are added to the mix.


  • 1 cup dried chickpeas
  • 1 cup small dried white beans, such as Great Northern
  • 2 quarts plus 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. sweet paprika
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
  • Pinch of saffron, steeped in 1/4 cup hot chicken stock or water
  • 12 almonds
  • 1 slice bread, cut in half
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbs. sherry vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups peeled and coarsely chopped pumpkin or butternut squash
  • 3 pears, peeled, halved, cored and cut into chunks
  • 1/2 lb. green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch lengths
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Pick over the chickpeas and white beans, and discard any misshapen beans and stones. Rinse the chickpeas and beans and drain. Place in a bowl, add water to cover generously and let soak overnight, then drain.
  2. In a saucepan over high heat, bring the water to a boil. Add the chickpeas and beans and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the chickpeas and beans are tender, about 1 hour.
  3. Meanwhile, in a sauté pan over medium heat, warm 2 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, about 10 minutes. Stir in paprika, mixing well, and then mix in the tomatoes. Cook for 10 minutes to blend the flavors. Add the saffron and stock to the pan, mix well and set aside.
  4. In another sauté pan over medium heat, warm the remaining 6 Tbs. olive oil. Add the almonds, bread and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the almonds, bread and garlic to a mortar or a small food processor. Grind with a pestle or process to a paste. Add the vinegar, mixing well. Set aside.
  5. After the chickpeas and white beans have cooked for 1 hour, add the pumpkin and pears and simmer for 10 minutes. Finally, stir in the tomato-onion mixture, the green beans and the bread mixture, and simmer until the green beans and pumpkin are tender and the flavors are blended, 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Ladle into warmed bowls and serve immediately. Serves 6 to 8.


Split Pea Soup

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
4 servings


  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 celery stalk thinly sliced
  • 2 small carrots, peeled & thinly sliced
  • 1 cup dried green or yellow split peas, picked over, rinsed, and drained
  • 4 cups vegetable broth or stock
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. finely chopped marjoram or 1/4 tsp. dried marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp. finely chopped thyme or 1/4 tsp. dried thyme


  1. In a large saucepan over med-high heat, warm the oil. Add onion and saute until softened, 3-5 minutes. Add the celery and carrots and saute until just slightly softened, 3 minutes.
  2. Add the split peas, stock, parsley, marjoram, and thyme. Reduce heat to med-low and bring to simmer. Cover partially and cook until the peas are tender, 60 minutes.
  3. Coarsely puree 2 cups of the soup in a food processor and return the pureed soup to saucepan. Season with salt & pepper to taste, return soup to med heat, and simmer for 5 minutes longer. Taste and adjust seasonings.


St. John's Stew


  • 1 large onion, cut into big chunks
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 cans garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with their liquid
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 can small black olives, drained and left whole
  • 1 T. dried basil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Saute onions in olive oil until browned. Add remaining ingredients and heat through. Excellent the next day. Can be doubled or tripled.

Tortilla Soup


  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric (you can omit this if you don't have it)
  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • 2 14-oz cans vegetable broth, plus 1 cup water
  • 2 14-oz cans diced tomatoes (fire-roasted are very good!)
  • 1 10-oz bag of frozen corn (I use Trader Joe's fire-roasted corn)
  • 1 cup green salsa
  • 1 can black beans (I like S&W caribbean recipe...I think TJ's has one, too)
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup rice (the more rice you add, the thicker it will be)
  • *corn chips, chopped cilantro, lime wedges


  1. In 5-6 quart Dutch oven (or very large pot) cook onions, cumin and turmeric in oil (medium heat) about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Add broth and water, tomatoes, corn and salsa. Bring to boil, add rice, reduce heat and simmer until rice is almost done (about 20 minutes).
  3. Add beans and cook another 5-10 minutes (the longer you cook this, the more the flavor develops)
  4. Serve with chopped cilantro and lime, crumble chips into soup

P.S. This also makes a great non-lenten soup - just add 2 shredded chicken breasts with the broth, etc. and add grated cheese as a garnish

Vegetable Soup with Basil Sauce (Soupe au Pistou)

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
12-15 servings

Pistou is a paste made with olive oil, garlic, and basil to which dried bread, pine nuts or almonds are added as a thickener. It shows the influence of Italy on the cooking of southeast France, especially Nice. Freshly made pistou has an intense, sharp flavor that enhances all the other ingredients in the soup, but if left to stand before using, it can become dull and even bitter. The soup itself varies from a humble one of dried beans and pasta to more elaborate ones that may include fresh shelling beans.


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 yellow or white onions, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 8 potatoes about 3 lb., diced
  • 1/2 lb. green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 2 cups fresh shelling beans such as cranberry, flageolet or lima (about 2 lb.)
  • 3 tomatoes, peeled and chopped, with juice
  • 3 quarts vegetable stock
  • 2 Tbs. fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh marjoram
  • 1 cup broken spaghetti or other thin pasta
  • (small pieces)

For the pistou:

  • 20 garlic cloves, peeled but left whole
  • 4 cups fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1 to 1 1/4 cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. salt


  1. In a large soup pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the potatoes, green beans and shelling beans and cook, stirring almost constantly with a wooden spoon, until the beans are glistening and the potatoes are nearly opaque, 5 to 6 minutes.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes and their juice. Then add the stock, thyme, salt, pepper and marjoram. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes and beans are soft, about 40 minutes. Add the pasta and cook until the pasta is done, 10 to 15 minutes more.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, make the pistou: In a food processor, combine the garlic, basil, pine nuts and 3 Tbs. of the olive oil. Process using short on-off pulses to form a paste. With the machine running, gradually add enough of the remaining oil to form a thick sauce. Add the salt and process briefly to blend. Alternately, combine the garlic, basil, and pine nuts in a mortar and pound them with a pestle until they form a smooth, thick paste. Gradually add the olive oil, stirring with the pestle until a thick sauce forms. Season with the salt.
  4. To serve, ladle the soup into warmed bowls, then stir 1 Tbs. of the pistou into each bowl. Pass the remaining pistou in separate serving bowls at the table.


Veggie Lentil Soup


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced or chopped
  • 2 beets, cooked (see note below)
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1-1/2 cups baby lentils (these are available at New Seasons and are much better-tasting than the standard brown lentil)
  • 1 T. dill
  • 1 T. basil
  • ½ T. oregano
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup frozen chopped spinach

Saute onion, carrots, and beets in olive oil until the onion is soft. Add the lentils, spices, and salt. Add about 8 cups water (you may need to add more). Simmer until the lentils are soft (about 1 hour). Add the spinach and heat through.

For the beets: roast beets are very easy and great to keep around during a fast. Wash beets (do not peel), wrap individually in aluminum foil and bake at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes to one hour. Once they have cooled, you can put them in the refrigerator and use them whenever you like. The peel will slip right off when you go to use them.

Yellow Lentil Soup


  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 2 med. Carrots, chopped
  • 2 c. yellow lentils (red when dry)
  • ½ c. rice (I like brown basmati best)
  • 8-11 c. water
  • 2 t. cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste

Saute onion in oil until browned (this is optional—if I’m in a hurry, I just chop the onion and add it to the other ingredients without sauteing in oil). Add remaining ingredients and simmer about 2-3 hours (great in Crock Pot).