Monday, January 23, 2012

GLUTEN-FREE VEGAN JULIENNED CARROT VEGETABLE SOUP

This gluten-free vegan vegetable soup is easy to assemble and ready in about 20 minutes. If you've made tomato-based vegetable soups before, there's probably not much new here for you except for one little difference that will add color, texture and perhaps even a bit of relief from your winter-weight worries. This is a low-fat, high fiber, low-carb dish that you can use as a mid-afternoon snack, as well as a starter for lunch or dinner. It will help curb your appetite and aid in portion control with the higher fat or calorie dishes that might be following the soup course. My silly little secret? Julienned carrots are added last to this soup that is really more of a method than a recipe (feel free to substitute the vegetables listed below with whatever you have around--just don't omit the carrots!).
In soup pot, heat 1 T olive oil on low flame.

Add 1 diced onion, 1 cup sliced bell peppers, 1 sliced mushroom, 1 tsp salt, 1T smoked sweet paprika, 2T dried oregano, !T dried parsley, 1/2 T garlic powder. Mix well. Cover and cook on low until onions are soft.

Add one 28 oz can crushed tomatoes, 5 cups vegetable stock, 2 cups shredded cabbage and 8oz frozen chopped spinach. Mix well. Cover and cook on low until spinach is warmed. Add julienned carrots (I used the shredder blade on my food processor), and cook until carrots are softened, but still slightly firm.

The variety of textures in this soup, especially the pasta-like al dente quality of the carrots, makes this feel like more of a caloric indulgence than it actually is. Enjoy a second helping--guiltlessly!

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