Friday, February 5, 2010

Sweet Potato, Chickpea, and Cilantro Soup

Omg. Omg. I just created the most delicious, freshest combination ever!  I didn't want to go to the grocery store but needed something quick and healthy to eat.  So I did the whole "clean out the fridge" thing.  Here are the principles I operated by:

1. I am tired of using store-bought stock.  It is full of sodium and goodness knows what else.  So I've made an effort to use water and flavor it with fresh ingredients, or make homemade stock.  So in this case, I was thinking about how to flavor the liquid for the soup without using a can.

2. I wanted veggies.

3. I wanted flavor.

Here's what I came up with, using the only vegetables I had in my kitchen.

1/4 green pepper, diced
1 sweet potato, diced
1 clove garlic diced
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
fresh spinach
handful of frozen green peas
a couple orange peels (just use a carrot peeler and peel off a couple pieces)
a little salt and ground pepper
lots of fresh chopped cilantro
about 1/2 cup white wine (doesn't matter if its from an old bottle, as long as it is remotely drinkable)
water to cover

Saute peppers for a couple minutes on low, with a little olive oil, sea salt, and pepper.  Add sweet potato and cilantro and cook for about 5 minutes.  Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes more, stirring so the garlic doesn't burn.  Add white wine, turn up heat, and reduce wine.  Add chickpeas, orange peel, and water to sufficiently cover and simmer for about 20 minutes.  Stir in spinach and frozen peas and heat through.  Remove from heat and stir in more fresh cilantro.

The soup is bright, light, simple, yet flavorful... and very good for you.

Lessons learned:
1. Be resourceful in the kitchen, use up old ingredients, and you'll inevitably discover new flavor combinations.
2. Less is more.

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