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Root Vegetables, Deliciously!

If you can’t get enough soup during the winter months, I have a delicious new recipe for you—Root Vegetable Soup, made two ways.

Readers following my blog for a long time know that sweet potatoes are my favorite root. Being somewhat of a habitual eater, I never tire of them. But even I need a change of pace from time to time, which is what inspired this recipe focused on parsnips and carrots.

I most often see recipes coming into my inbox for roasted parsnips, but roasting these vegetables naturally dries them, which I don’t enjoy. Instead, I whipped up this soup to enjoy the parsnip’s unique flavor with plenty of yummy broth and good fat so this vegetable is easier to digest. A bit of arugula gives a delectable splash of green.

Since I love the ease of one-pot meals—and because I like to eat some vegan protein with every meal—I made this batch with a base of freshly cooked chickpeas. Readers who prefer to avoid legumes can still appreciate the lovely flavors of a simpler all-veggie soup, making this recipe with less liquid.

From an Ayurvedic perspective, carrots and parsnips are fine for everyone when they’re cooked so that they’re tender and moist. From a nutritional perspective, both carrots and parsnips are rich in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. Carrots boast a lot of potassium, and parsnips add magnesium to the mix. As with many vegetables, the fiber in parsnips and carrots supports regularity, and their antioxidants may help prevent chronic conditions like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Improved immunity and eye health are also linked to carrots, good reasons why carrots are beloved as a “super food.”

Reap the benefits of this nutritious, delicious, and easy recipe for Root Vegetable Soup the next time you want to warm up with a new dish on a cold day!

PS As with all of my soup recipes, this tastes infinitely better when you make it with fresh Easy Vegetable Soup Stock vs. boxed or canned stock.



Preparation Time: 45 to 90 minutes, plus 8 hours soaking time, depending on your pot and recipe choice

Serves: 6

As mentioned in the blog, you can make this dish with a base of freshly cooked chickpeas or more simply as a vegetable soup. With a pressure cooker, you can still cook the soup with legumes in 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cooking chickpeas from scratch may take an hour or longer for them to become tender when cooked in a standard pot on the stove.

2 cups dried chickpeas (optional)
4 cups water
2 cups Easy Vegetable Soup Stock 
2 large celery stalks
4 large carrots
4 medium parsnips
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 medium or large leek bulbs plus an inch of the light-green shank
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 to 2 teaspoons mineral salt
3 to 5 ounces baby arugula or baby spinach
Black pepper, to taste

Cook’s Tip: 1. If you’re making the soup without chickpeas, cook the vegetables with a total of 4 cups liquid instead of the 6 cups called for. Or you can use the 6 cups liquid and add a potato; then cook the potato and celery until tender, and purée them for thickness before adding the other vegetables to cook another 15 minutes. Also, reduce ginger to 2 teaspoons. 2. Parsnips in stores are sometimes super huge and may be somewhat bitter, so I opt for parsnips the same size as typical large carrots.

1. Soak the chickpeas in water at least 8 hours. Strain and rinse them before cooking with 4 cups water in a pressure cooker, Instant Pot, or standard pot on the stove. Dice the celery and add it to the pot to cook with the chickpeas. Bring the pressure cooker/Instant Pot to high pressure for 15 minutes and set aside until the pressure releases. Bring a standard pot to a boil on high heat; then reduce the heat to medium and cook until the chickpeas and celery are completely tender. It will take at least 1 hour. Once the chickpeas are done, purée them and the celery with the liquid they cooked in.

2. While the chickpeas are cooking, clean and slice the carrots and parsnips into ⅛-inch rounds or half-rounds. Add the vegetables to the pot once the chickpeas and celery have been puréed. Cook on medium-low heat, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes, until the vegetables are completely tender.

3. While the vegetables are cooking, clean and thinly slice the leeks. Heat a small sauté pan on medium low. Add the coconut oil, and once it melts, add the leeks. Cook until the leeks are just turning golden, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin and coriander, stir to mix well, and set aside.

4. Grate the ginger and add it to the soup pot along with the leeks once all the vegetables are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top each serving with a handful of arugula. If you prefer, add as much arugula as you like to the pot. Serve immediately.

Chickpeas will increase vata, but I've found them much easier to digest when pureed. If you wish, cook the leek with a pinch of asafetida. You may also want to add a large clove of pressed garlic.

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