By Catherine Haug, Dec 2, 2015 (Photo, right, from Wikimedia Commons)
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve hated tomato soup EXCEPT when accompanied by a grilled cheese or ham and cheese sandwich. However, I have grown to love whole wheat sourdough (or at least regular whole wheat) bread for the sandwich, instead of the airy white bread I preferred as a child. And I like to experiment with different types of cheese, such as sharp cheddar and swiss together. I absolutely hate the plastic American or Velveta cheese; in fact, my fingers are burning just typing those names.
Did you know that tomatoes are more nutritious when they are cooked? This is because the heat of cooking releases the carotenoids so they can be absorbed.
Tomato-Basil Soup, with Kelp and Spinach
I’ve recently discovered the work of Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo as I try to reset my metabolism and put insulin resistance behind me. She has a good grasp of holistic healing, especially concerning this major hormone imbalance issue that can lead to type-2 diabetes and related health problems. She also has interesting recipes on her that use whole foods in combinations that help the healing process. This recipe is one of them from her B4Begone series (2); see her Vibrant Living blog (1) for her recipe.
It includes kelp, which is a nutrient dense seaweed that provides, among other things, iodine. I don’t care for the taste of kelp, but the idea of combining it with the more strongly flavored tomatoes and basil just might have my taste buds smiling. See iHerb for two kelp powder products (3).
I’ve made minimal changes to the cold raw soup recipe. But I would prefer a warmed soup, so include separate instructions for the warmed version, which I believe is more nutritious.
I’ve not yet tried this recipe but plan to do so soon. The original doesn’t indicate how many servings this makes, but I would guess at least 2.
Ingredients and Equipment
- 2 medium-sized tomatoes
- olive oil (for warmed version only)
- 4 celery stalks
- ½ cup fresh basil or 2 Tbsp dried
- 1 clove fresh garlic (or 1 tsp powdered garlic)
- ¼ tsp kelp powder
- 1 avocado (optional for creaminess)
- water or veggie juice, as needed for texture/consistency
- unrefined sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 cups fresh spinach, finely minced
- saucepan (optional)
Method for original cold, raw soup version:
- Blend all ingredients except spinach until smooth. I recommend starting with just ¼ avocado, then add more as needed to reach desired creaminess and thickness.
- Sprinkle salt over spinach and massage until wilted.
- Stir spinach into soup and add water or vegetable juice if needed to thin to desired consistency
Method for Cat’s warmed soup version:
- Prep: Chop tomatoes coarsely; chop celery. Chop basil separately. Mince spinach separately.
- Start with ¼ avocado (but lengthwise as a wedge), peel and pit removed.
- Mince garlic, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, then press to a pulp with the side of your knife blade.
- Soup: Warm olive oil in saucepan; add tomato and celery and sauté over low heat until wilted.
- Add pressed garlic and kelp powder to saucepan, stirring to warm.
- Remove from heat and blend with hand-held immersion blender, or transfer warm mixture to blender, and blend until smooth.
- Add avocado wedge (if desired) and blend. Check for consistency and add more avocado as needed
- Stir minced spinach into soup. If too thick, add warmed water or vegetable juice to thin to desired consistency
- Dr. Loscalzo’s blog recipe: drritamarie.com/blog/recipe-classic-comforting-tomato-basil-soup
- Dr. Loscalzo’s B4 Be Gone System: drritamarie.com/vibrant/b4begone
- iherb.com to search by product code: Now Kelp Powder (product code NOW-02676); or Starwest Botanicals Kelp Powder (product code STR-07325)