Thursday, November 15, 2012

Jamaican Garlic & Greens Soup

I Love this soup! But, the recipe isn't mine. I first had it last fall, when my friend Marlene brought a pot to a potluck. Marlene is an amazing woman, an incredible chef and one of my favorite classmates from Culinary school. She is from Jamaica and this is a vegetarian version of a classic soup she learned to make growing up. I think it is perfect aaany time of year, and is especially great if you haven't been feeling well. The nutrient rich spicy broth is very comforting, healing and freaking delicious.

The reason I remembered the soup is because I recently happened to have 1/2 gallon of gorgeous, roasted garlic, spinach broth and a need to use it up. I've been making lasagna for a local restaurant and this broth is a by-product of the spinach-garlic filling. I cook 4lbs of spinach with 2 yellow onions and lots of garlic. Afterwards I drain this garlicky green goodness & am left with a thick & incredibly delicious broth. I thought... soup is a must! I better ask Marlene for her recipe! This is my version of the recipe she gave me. I only made slight changes to adjust to ingredients I had available to me. Thank you Marlene!!

2.5 quarts vegetable broth
1 T coconut oil
1 small- medium onion
1 t cumin seeds
2 c diced okra
4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
1 T arrowroot powder
2 bay leaves
1 habanero, punctured
1/2 t cinnamon
1-2 t ground coriander
1/2 bunch kale leave, chopped fine
4 c spinach leaves, chopped fine

Heat the coconut oil in a large pot. Add the onion, cumin, okra, thyme and bay leaves. Once the onion and okra are tender stir in the arrowroot powder (you could also use kudzu or cornstarch) then pour in the broth. Add the habanero (punctured w a for twice) and bring to a boil. I kept the lid on, so that the soup didnt reduce down too much. Once the okra is falling apart add the remaining ingredients and simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes. My friend explained to me that the greens should be melting into the soup. You could add the kale earlier in the recipe, when you add the broth, because it will take longer to break down.

She also adds dumplings. Brilliant! I love dumpling, but am gluten free so I am trying the soup with mochi dumplings. Mochi is dried rice paste. sounds yummy, right? Well, when you stick mochi in the oven it puffs up & is a great dumpling substitute. My favorite use for mochi is to make waffles! Here is a link to the last time I made mochi waffles.

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