Roasted Soup Obsession: Carrot or Sweet Potato. Spices Galore.

My latest obsession: creamy roasted soups. Carrot and sweet potato flavors mostly, with a few flavor and ingredient tweaks along the way. These soups have been bringing me some serious delicious-comfort the past few weeks. Get the info on this fantastic go-to meal recipe and share a bowl with me!..

First off, thank you so much for the support and congrats for my cookbook#2 announcement! Your support and excitement means so so much to me.

Now lets warm you up!.. These warm, cozy, healthy, vitamin-A, fiber, deliciousness-infused bowls are perfect for cozying up to at the end of a long day. They warm you from the inside out and nurture you with nutrition. Pop some veggies in the oven, forget about them for a while, then hop back in the kitchen and blend up these soups. Easy!..

Creamy carrot with some soaked cashews added to make things "extra creamy"

Roasted carrots turn into amazingly flavorful carrot soup. I prefer using roasted to boiled carrots. Look at the flavor!..

super-spiced sweet potato. Loads of smoky paprika, maple, sweet curry, garlic and turmeric.

On Food Obsessions. I like to think that as a food blogger I try new things at each meal, my table being a constant vehicle for experimentation and creativity.

Well, yes sometimes. But not always.

Actually I'm just like anyone else really. I fall in love with certain dishes and crave them, so sometimes that even means having a dish three times in a row (ok, or more!) and changing it up a little each time. It is amazing how changing up the spices, garnish or adding even just one new ingredient can change the flavor, texture and tone of a recipe. Including these soups!

But back to obsessions. Obsessions is a bad word. Hm. I mean, healthy vegan food is my obsession. These recipes I speak of are more like "kicks." I usually go on a recipe kick, crave it like crazy for a few days (or weeks!) then get sick of it and crave something new. Sometimes I go back to old kicks and sometimes they are enjoyed and never heard from again.

Just for fun , let me share a few of my historic "kicks"

- There was the GoBo NYC Butternut Squash Risotto + Seitan Skewers kick of 2008.
- The giant big salad bowl dinner kick, summer of 2009
- The breakfast for dinner, tofu scramble wrap craze a few years back.
- And then of course my matcha protein shake obsession that started about a year ago and is still going strong. (Some kicks never die I think!)
- My farro porridge breakfast crush of 2011, which comes and goes, seasonally.
- My fresh-pressed juice craving when I simply HAD to start my day with juice for a few months straight, this comes and goes too.
- My kale dinner salad bowl.. again that one comes and goes.
- My baby carrots + hummus snack obsession. That totally passed. Very three years ago. (I used to be a baby carrot addict, I buy whole bunches nowadays though.)
- My vegan frozen yogurt addiction. Broke that off, thank goodness.
- My "Macro Bowl" kick of 2012. I got a little bored with that.
- My 'big pot of soup' kick a few snow seasons ago back in NYC. That was fun.
- My Matcha and turmeric warm mug lattes kick of 2013, ahem, still going strong.
- My steamy miso noodle soup bowl lunch kick, 2007. That was me getting used to my first NYC winter.
- My breakfast chia pudding kick, this one comes and goes.
- My green smoothie obsession while writing my book 365 Vegan Smoothies. Those green smoothies were my favorite to taste test because they are so. darn. good. for. you.

And on and on and on..

I think we all do this though. A lot. Yes? What are your recipe obsessions?

THIS soup. So, amidst cookbook writing and extreme recipe-testing activities, it seems all I crave at the end of a long day is a giant bowl of roasted carrot or sweet potato soup, paired with two toasted slices of sprouted grain bread, a slather of Vegenaise, and some sort of salad on the side. Kale sald, bean dish, grain salad (farro + black rice .. yum!) etc.

So here is my soup of NOW. Get it while its hot. In a few months I probably will be saying, "Soup who?" I'm such a culinary flirt.

Spice it up! My thing with these soups (carrot or sweet potato) is that I can literally drown them in spices of all sorts. Which I love. You can do the same. I can also adjust the creaminess level by changing the ratio and amount of broth to non-dairy milk. Or by adding in ingredients like beans, lentils and soaked nuts. More texture, heartier flavors. Coconut milk and canned pumpkin are also fun add-ins.

Simple Roasted Carrot Soup with spices, curry, ginger, garlic, maple
2 servings

To Roast:
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive or extra virgin coconut oil
7-9 small to medium carrots (about one bunch stemmed) OR 1 medium sweet potato - more info on roasting carrots
2 tsp agave or maple syrup
salt to taste

1-3 cups vegetable broth
1-2 cups almond milk, plain
1 clove garlic, optional
1 tsp ginger, grated
spices: pinches of cayenne, turmeric, black pepper, sweet curry powder to taste, smoky paprika and more..
*liquid amounts will greatly differ from how creamy or thin you want your soup.

Garnish: more spices (I love smoky Spanish paprika for this), drizzle of roasting juices or maple syrup, pinch of parsley or veggie garnish

Optional add-in ideas to change things up:
1 cup canned beans or lentils, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup pumpkin puree - for extra creaminess
1/4 cup soaked cashews
Salt & Peppered Shiitakes (make on the side then serve over top the soup .. heavenly!)

garnish: roasted carrot and carrot roasting juices

1. Preheat oven to 415 degrees. For carrots: Wash and dry carrots. Slice or chop carrots. Toss carrots with the oil, salt and sweetener. Lay flat on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until tender, about 30-40 minutes, less for smaller carrots. Reserve the “roasting juices” from the carrot pan for a soup accent to serve. For sweet potato: simply plop the sweet potato on the baking rack, slitting a few holes in the top to vent. Be sure to line your oven with foil to catch any sticky juices that drip and burn. Bake until very tender so that the skin peels right off.
2. Add the roasted carrots or roasted sweet potato flesh to a high speed blender, leave out a few small carrots or sweet potato cubes for garnish. Add all additional ingredients to blender and blend from low to high until silky smooth. Modify texture and flavor as desired. I personally love my soup very rich and creamy, so I use minimal amounts of liquid. But for a more traditional soup consistency, start with two cups of broth, a cup of non-dairy milk and go from there. (If you add too much liquid you can always simmer the soup uncovered on the stove to reduce the soup and thicken.) After blending, taste test the soup and adjust spices and salt to taste.
3. Pour soup in a small soup pot and simmer on low, covered, until ready to serve. I cover the pot otherwise the thick soup splatters everywhere! Garnish with the roasted carrot and a drizzle of the carrot juices from the roasting pan.

Nutrition Facts (per serving – 893g):
Calories: 322kcal Fat: 12g Carbs: 46g Protein: 10g Fiber: 13g
Vitamin C 36% Iron: 23% Calcium: 44% Vitamin A: 1309%

Sweet potato lover?
Here is another recipe to try: Easy Sweet Potato + Pistachio Fritters

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