It’s been a few weekends since I have proactively made plans. I must admit I’ve been weekend anti-social, wanting nothing more than to stay put and do nothing. The weather is partly to blame, but I’ve also been plain tuckered out. This weekend I made plans outside of needing to clean, cook, get groceries and blog (aka the regular routine). I also wanted to head out into the world and do some social things, real people in your face things, things that people should do more of.
Whenever I make plans, life has a way of throwing a monkey wrench in them. I totally woke up late because I let my phone run out of juice (therefore my alarm didn’t sound) and missed Podcamp. Podcamp is the un-conference I went to last year (posted about it here) and thoroughly enjoyed. I would have had time to get my act together and take in a few presentations but today, of course, my boyfriend also made plans (which almost never happens).
Before you question my sanity, yes, we totally can both go outside of the house at the same time (and without each other) but the length of time we leave is totally depending on the dogs needs…one of us has to be home to let them out/feed them etc. I was set on going to Podcamp until around lunchtime, he was planning on leaving the house around one in the afternoon and being gone until after supper time. Between the two of our schedules, and my lack of preparation with my phone, I decided to stay home to not shorten his day.
Even though I was bummed I missed a fun and free social activity, I was very excited about this – alone time with the dogs and the house – I’m going to get so much done! I turned on my podcasts, and started cleaning and cooking. Shortly thereafter his plans were also cancelled.
There are silver linings to every mishap, a long walk with the dogs in the balmy (8 degrees) and unexpected winter weather and having time to make this soup. As I mentioned in my last post, we got a lot snow the last few days, well the weather has warmed up overnight and now everything is melty. The ups and downs in climate change, although currently favorable, is making my throat act up a little. My body is threatening sickness as it does as the first signs of a cold. Whenever that happens I try my best to use the might of chilies to burn it the eff out of me. Through heat and sweat, sickness shall be battled and the chilies will prevail.
This soup has everything a person could want, it’s spicy and creamy, it has a rainbow of vegetables and protein. It’s quick to come together and totally improves with age. It’s hearty and filling and will kill the common cold, winter blues and any dashed plans, all in one go! Makes 6-8 servings.
Spicy Tofu Vegtable Soup
adapted from Quiche a Week’s Curry Coconut Tofu Soup
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1 medium onion, peeled and diced small
- 1- 2 tsp of red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp of tandoori spice (you can also used thai spice or green/red curry paste)
- 1 container organic vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup of water
- 2 inch piece of ginger, peeled
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- 1 tbs of dried basil
- zest of one lemon
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 1 block of firm tofu rinsed, patted dry and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 10 crimini mushrooms, washed stemmed and sliced
- 1/2 sweet red pepper seeded and diced
- 1/2 cup of frozen petit peas
- 1/2 cup of frozen corn
- 1 can of coconut milk
- juice one lemon
- 1/2 bunch of kale (about 2 cups), washed, stemmed and sliced thin
- sriracha, salt and pepper to taste
Step one – make a super flavorful broth. Heat olive oil over medium in a large stock pot. When the oil has come to temperature, cook onions,with red chili flakes and tandoori spice until they become translucent and start to brown/stick to the bottom of the pot.
**If you are planning on using a curry paste instead of the dry tandoori spice blend it’s best to add the paste in when you add in the vegetable broth.
Add vegetable stock to deglaze the pan, add minced garlic, the whole peeled ginger and minced/grated lemon peel, dried basil, garlic salt and pepper and water. Bring the broth to a boil then reduce the heat and let simmer about 10 -15 minutes.
During this time, you should be preparing your tofu and vegetables. Add red pepper, tofu, and mushrooms to the broth. Let simmer over medium heat for about two to four minutes.
Add coconut milk, peas and corn and cook an additional two to four minutes. Add the kale and lemon juice stirring well, and shut off the heat while the kale wilts. Once the kale is cooked, season with sriracha, salt and pepper and serve!
You can leave the chunk of ginger in the soup but be careful not to serve it to your guests. If you are serving this as your main meal it’s a fun soup to customize via garnishes. Bean sprouts, green onions, fresh basil or coriander or sliced chilis and cashews are all great choices.