Soup is the classic comfort food of winter. Who doesn’t love a bowl of hot soup as the weather gets colder and the days get shorter? However, there is some debate as to whether comfort food, like soup, actually comforts. According to National Public Radio, studies show that comfort food has no effect on mood. According to the Atlantic, comfort food comforts only because of its associated memories. I find it very peculiar, that all my googling resulted in no articles arguing for soup as a mood boosting meal.
In my own personal case, I never very much appreciated my mom’s soups (sorry mom). Yet, I still believe there is something special about wrapping my hands around a steaming mug of cream of broccoli (vegan of course!) while the snow falls down outside. It doesn’t take a positive memory for me to be comforted by a good meal, especially soup! My hands are warmed by the mug, my belly is filled by the soup, and the heat of everything makes me pause and slow down the pace of the meal. The result is reflections on how lucky and thankful I feel to be warm and fed on a cold winter night.
Whatever your reason for enjoying soup, being vegan or health conscious should not prevent you from maximizing this enjoyment. Silken tofu, blended, is an excellent addition to any soup, giving it body, a creamy texture, and less calories with more nutrition. This mid December weekend, I decided to do some research on vegan “cream based” soups.
NOTE: DO NOT use an immersion blender to cream your soup. The tofu is not going to cream properly and you are going to have a thin soup with tiny little tofu chunks. For this job you need a real blender, and if you don’t have one, I suggest you get one stat!
The result of my research is two recipe referrals for healthy vegan cream of broccoli and cream of potato soup, as well as one homemade recipe for creamy tomato soup! With a piece of fresh homemade bread, you can’t get a much healthier, or more comforting, vegan winter meal.
This Week in Updates: Cupcake present success
Grocery budget grumblers because the co-op was out of bulk chia seed again! This meant that I had to buy two week’s worth, thus the slight overage. But I will be under next week!
Okay, so while last weekend had a few failures, my holiday presents for my friends went on with no crippling hitches. The plan? Individual cupcakes for everyone, with a flavor corresponding to their personality. The chocolate bases got burned, so everyone was a little vanilla, but the four flavors of frosting turned out great! Not perfect yet though…. one day I’ll completely master vegan frosting. These were my first truly awesome looking vegan cupcakes, and I was really proud. This gives me fuel for my new blog idea: The Cupcake Project. More on that coming soon!
In regards to the puppy, Jameson is meeting a prospective new family Tuesday. He’s been doing well, thanks to a really good friend Cherise. Wish us all luck!
The Recipe: Vegan Cream of Tomato Basil Soup
So easy, cheap, and healthy. The carrots add a hint of sweetness, and the tofu gives this soup a healthy protein punch. The tofu cost me $2, the tomatoes $2, tomato paste $1.50, onion, $0.50, carrots $0.50, and all of the spices $0.50. That's $7 for 7 servings! If you are super hungry, like me, you can double the recipe and have a massive bowl of soup with a piece of bread for lunch throughout the work week. Then that would be $14 for 7 servings.
- 1 can diced tomatoes with basil and garlic
- 12 oz soft or silken tofu
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 1 can tomato paste
- Put all ingredients in a crock pot, and cook on high for 6 hours.
- Blend in a blender.