This mildly spicy, cheesy Chicken Tortilla Soup really warms you up on a cold day! The recipe is adapted from Food.com with a little more garlic added in. I also used olive oil instead of corn oil and Half & Half (light cream) instead of milk. If you want to try a Continue reading
Soup is such a great thing to eat on a cold winter day. Like this Tomato Carrot Soup with Basil. Although, I have to admit, it’s also good in the summer made with fresh tomatoes. But during the winter you can use canned diced tomatoes and I think it tastes just as good.
I’ve been having lots of soup lately, because it is cold and because I’ve been getting over a nasty bout of bronchitis, which I had over most of the holidays. I was disappointed at not being able to post more holiday recipes, but just didn’t have much energy to cook or do much else!
So I thought this would be a good time to post a soup recipe–most people love a good bowl of soup in the winter and this is so good for you. It has a good variety of veggies in it–carrots, celery and onion–all blended to a smooth consistency. Garlic and basil also add to the flavor. It makes a great meal with some crusty bread. Or serve it before a main course for dinner.
TOMATO CARROT SOUP WITH BASIL by NancyC
Makes about 4 servings
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium carrots, shredded
- 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup water
- 2 pounds fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced (or 2 [14.5-ounce] cans diced tomatoes)
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil or 2 Tablespoons dried basil, crushed
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
In large saucepan, cook carrots, celery, onion, and garlic, in olive oil, covered, over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add half of the tomatoes and cook an additional 5 minutes.
Transfer mixture, in 2 batches, to a blender or food processor and add 1/2 cup water to each batch. Cover and blend until smooth, then return mixture to saucepan.
Stir in the salt, half of the basil, and the remaining tomatoes. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. Stir in the remaining basil and balsamic vinegar and heat an additional 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
If you are a fan of tomato soup, you’ll want to try this sometime! I love trying out new versions of tomato soup. Do you have a favorite tomato soup recipe?
Rosemary is one of my favorite herbs. Unfortunately, my big outdoor rosemary plant did not make it through the winter, so I have a new small one growing inside right now. I’ll put it outside soon, hoping it will grow into another big plant! I used some of the rosemary from this little plant in this Creamy Navy Bean Soup recipe.
I made this soup several weeks ago on a chilly day. Even though the weather has warmed up, this is still a great recipe for any time of year if you are a soup-lover! Creamy soups usually call for heavy cream as an ingredient, but I used plain Greek yogurt in this soup–I thought the tangy yogurt would give the soup a nice flavor, and it really did! The rosemary gives it a great flavor, too. You’ll want to use fresh rosemary if you have it, but dried rosemary also works.
CREAMY NAVY BEAN SOUP by NancyC
Makes about four servings
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary or 1/2 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- dash of salt and pepper
- 1 1/2 cups chopped onion (about 1 large)
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 2 (15.5-ounce) cans Navy Beans, rinsed and drained
- 2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
- Additional fresh or dried rosemary for garnish
In a 4-quart saucepan over medium-low heat, add olive oil and heat for 1-2 minutes, then add garlic, rosemary, salt, pepper, and onions; cook until onions start to get tender and a little translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add in the broth and beans, heat to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let soup cool for 5 to 10 minutes.
Place half of the soup mixture in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Pour this mixture into a large bowl, then blend the remaining soup mixture and add to the large bowl.
Stir the plain Greek yogurt into the pureed soup mixture, blending well (if the yogurt is lumpy, use a hand better or immersion blender to smooth the mixture). Pour the soup mixture back into the saucepan and cook on medium heat for 5 additional minutes.
Pour into 4 serving bowls and top with a garnish of fresh or dried rosemary, if desired, and serve.
In addition to rosemary, I also like to grow basil in a pot every summer–that’s another favorite herb of mine. Do you grow your own herbs, too, and what are your favorites?
Like so many people I know, I’m trying to eat a little healthier during this new year. So when I heard about the new cookbook, Weight Watchers What To Cook Now, I was definitely interested in reviewing it! Not only did I receive a review copy, the publisher, St. Martin’s Press, is also providing a giveaway copy! I’ll tell you a little about the book and share a recipe from it with you, and then be sure to enter the giveaway by leaving a comment–see the end of this post for details on how to win!
This cookbook has more than 300 new recipes and lots of color photos. There’s a wonderful variety of great-sounding recipes to choose from–meals and desserts that your whole family can enjoy. And they look easy to prepare, too. All recipes include nutritional information and the Weight Watcher PointsPlus® values so those of you in Weight Watchers can easily keep track of your points. Even if you’re not in Weight Watches, though, I’m sure these recipes would appeal to any of you who are wanting to eat lighter and healthier.
The book starts out with tips and helpful information on good nutrition, the well-stocked pantry, must-have kitchen tools, food safety, and choosing and preparing fresh fruits and veggies. Then you’ll find recipes organized in the following chapters: Breakfasts and Brunches; Lunches; Appetizers and Snacks; Main Dishes–Beef, Pork, and Lamb; Main Dishes–Poultry; Main Dishes–Seafood; Main Dishes-Vegetarian; 20-Minute Main Dishes; Side Dishes; and Sweets. So there’s lots to choose from! Here are some recipes I’d like to try…
- Coconut-Almond French Toast with Tropical Fruit
- Asian Burgers with Honey-Lime Slaw
- Spinach and Endive Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette
- Italian Beef and Mushroom Meat Loaf
- Brown Sugar-Dijon Glazed Ham with Sweet Potatoes
- Maple-Glazed Grilled Chicken
- Pan-seared Tuna with Citrus-Avocado Salsa
- Warm Mozzarella and Tomato Flatbreads
- Gingery Chicken and Vegetable Stir-Fry
- Garlicky Spinach and Fontina Pizza
- Chocolate Brownie Ice-Cream Sandwiches
For this post, I decided to try the Easy Pantry Minestrone from the Vegetarian section, since I had been wanting to make minestrone this winter. It’s a good, healthy soup with lots of veggies (carrots, onion, celery, zucchini), red beans, and chickpeas. Dried basil also flavors the soup, and you serve it with a teaspoon-size dollop of pre-made refrigerated pesto which also adds nicely to the flavor!
EASY PANTRY MINESTRONE from Weight Watchers What To Cook Now
Makes 6 servings
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 carrots, halved lengthwise and sliced
- 1 celery stalk, sliced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 7 cups reduced-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 (15.5-ounce) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (15.5-ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup whole wheat macaroni or other small pasta (uncooked)
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
- 1 small zucchini, chopped
- 2 Tablespoons refrigerated basil pesto
Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add carrots, celery, and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds.
Add broth, kidney beans, chickpeas, macaroni, and basil and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, 10 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and zucchini and simmer until pasta and vegetables are very tender, 10 minutes longer. Ladle into bowls and top each with 1 teaspoon pesto.
PER SERVING (1 bowl): 307 Cal, 6 g Total Fat, Og Trans Fat, 1 mg Chol, 876 mg Sod, 53 g Carb, 10 g Fib, 14 g Prot, 120 mg Calc.
PointsPlus value: 8
I really like the dollop of pesto–it gives the soup an extra little zing of flavor when you stir it in!
THE GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED! Congratulations to commentor #8, Aline, for winning the book!
Now for the Giveaway…if you’d like to enter to win a copy of Weight Watchers What To Cook Now, leave a comment on this blog post between now and Wednesday, January 22, at 10 p.m. (CST)–the random drawing will be made from the comments on this post only! The winner will be chosen randomly via Random.org and announced on Thursday evening, January 23. Winner will be notified via email (if winner does not respond in 3 days, I’ll do another drawing). Giveaway limited to readers in the Continental U.S. and Canada.
First entry: Leave a comment on this post–it would be great to hear what your favorite healthy dish is!
Bonus entry: If you are a new or existing follower or subscriber, you can leave one extra comment telling me the way (or ways) you are following.
Note: If your comment doesn’t show up right away, it just means I need to click on it to approve it before it’s visible–I do this because of spam comments that sometimes come through!
We’ve had several weeks of chilly weather, and I’ve been making more soup! This time I decided to try Pumpkin Black Bean Soup. I adapted my recipe from one I found at Taste of Home. It’s a savory-flavored soup that tastes a little like chili. So if you like chili and black bean soup, I’m sure you’ll like this! In addition to the pumpkin puree, which gives the soup a nice creamy consistency even though you don’t really taste the pumpkin much, other healthy ingredients include diced tomatoes, onions, and garlic.
PUMPKIN BLACK BEAN SOUP by NancyCreative, adapted from Taste of Home
Makes about 8 servings (2 quarts)
- 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 cups (24 ounces) vegetable broth
- 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar (I used Bragg’s)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Optional: dash of salt and pepper, to taste
- For garnish: 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream) and 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
Place beans and tomatoes in a food processor; cover and process until blended. Set aside.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, saute onions in oil until tender. Add garlic and saute 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, pumpkin, vinegar, and bean mixture, blending well. Add cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, and, if desired, salt and pepper to taste.
Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish each serving with plain Greek yogurt and sliced green onions. Each 1 cup serving is about 240 calories.
I never seem to get tired of making and eating soup, and it’s fun to try different recipes! Have you made any soups using pumpkin as an ingredient?