Almond soup – Cosy up this fall to some delicious and hearty paleo friendly soup that is inspired by West Africa’s peanut soup
As we kiss goodbye to summer and learn to slowly embrace the fall, let us look back and reflect on a few summer healthy foodie highlights. That Girl Cooks Healthy brought her readers a few sizzling summer recipes ranging from Cinnamon orange iced tea to sip on during those scotching hot heatwaves right down to some chocolate cheesecake parfait to gorge on after dinner or how about some homemade coconut ice cream? Can someone say spoilt for choice because that’s certainly what I’m over here thinking.
Anyway, moving on from the summer recap, let’s focus more on the current season – Autumn also known as fall. Not quite winter yet, but post summer, where you feel that cool breeze in the air (well at least those who live in the Western Hemisphere). Like most bloggers, I’ve already started to think about what recipes to prepare for the cold snap. Yes, light salads are delicious and incredibly healthy but who really wants to cosy up to a prawn salad when it’s minus 2 outside? Didn’t think so.
Almond soup is my introductory to the cooler months, it is my creative twist to the infamous West African cuisine known as peanut soup or ground nut soup as some refer to it as. My almond soup recipe is a mixture of West Africa with a touch of the Caribbean mixed with my own improvisation. The big question is, does the almond soup recipe work? Well I’ve tried and tested the recipe on several people who love the combination of almond butter with a strong taste of tomato.
The base of the soup consists of almond butter and passata (tomato puree) both are easily accessible from any supermarket. I used a small 170g jar of Almond butter with 500g of passata. I feel that this ratio allows the almond butter to come through in a complimentary way without being overpowering, you can taste that almond flavour with every spoonful. If you want a strong almond butter taste then I suggest only using 300-400g of passata.
The Caribbean flare derives from a few common ingredients that are used by most of the English speaking Islands – Thyme, scotch bonnet, sweet potato (red skin with white flesh) and dumplings. The dumplings are grain/gluten free made from cassava flour not to be mistaken for tapioca starch. The boiled dumpling/spinners are the best that I have made so far, so good I may write a separate post about it. They are delicate when forming into discs and rolling into spinners, just make sure the dough is pliable then drop them into the pot. How much water you’ll need to make the dumpling with the cassava flour varies. I usually add about 1/2 cup at a time until I form a firm dough.
- 170g Jar of almond butter (smooth or crunchy)
- 1 carton of passata (500g)
- 2 litres of vegetable stock
- 1 large red skin sweet potato, peel and cubed
- 2 tbsp of coconut oil
- 2 medium sized onions, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped finely
- 8 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1-2 tsp black pepper
- himalayan pink salt to taste
- The dumpling/spinners
- 3 cups of cassava flour
- water (accordingly)
- Melt the coconut oil in a large stockpot on medium heat.
- Proceed to sautee the onions, garlic and bell peppers in the stockpot until they are soft and tender.
- Stir in the passata and vegetable stock then bring to the boil and reduce to low heat.
- Allow the passata/stock to simmer with the lid for 10mins so all of the ingredients are fully infused.
- After 10 minutes remove the stockpot from the stove and carefully ladle the liquid contents into a blender. If the entire contents cannot hold then work in batches.
- Add the almond butter and puree into a smooth consistency then transfer the soup back into the stockpot.
- Season the soup with chilli, black pepper, sprigs of thyme and salt to taste.
- Simmer for a total of 20 mins during the simmer time prepare the dumpling/spinners. You will be adding them 10 minutes into the simmering stage along with the potatoes.
- Add the cassava flour to a medium bowl, use your hands to work ½ cup of water into the flour, add ½ cup at a time if needed until a large pliable dough ball is formed.
- Pinch off a small piece of dough to form a disc shaped dumpling.To make the spinner pinch off some of the dough and roll between the palm of your hands - about 4cm long
- Repeat the previous step with the remainder of the dough. Alternating between spinners and dumpling.
- Carefully lower the dumpling/spinners along with the sweet potato into the stock pot and simmer for a further 10 minutes, stirring once.
- Serve accordingly.
This is a soup with a twist, a complete contrast to the traditional Saturday soup that I ate growing up. This is Charla tapping into other ways to make healthy, hearty soup that full of omega fats that the body needs to absorb nutrients and produce hormones and complex carbohyrates that fill keep the fit, strong and energised.