Simply Scrumptious Spring Soup

I have been having some fantastic cooking adventures these past couple of weeks! I love spring harvest! The soup featured in today's post makes the most of all the fantastic greens that are in season right now. But before I tell you more about this soup, let's take a look a few of my other cooking adventures of late.

For dinner one night, I decided to slice up a plum. The other plums I've had this year were fantastic, so I was looking forward to eating this one. Thank goodness I decided to cut it before biting into it! When I did slice it open, instead of a pit in the middle, there were two bugs... CRAWLING AROUND! Eeeek! 

So gross. Seriously. This still gives me the shivers. Ew.

I have also been in love with artichokes this spring. I haven't had success cooking fresh artichokes until this year when I randomly picked up one that was on sale at the grocery store. I don't know why I was so reticent to cook it. It was easy and delicious! I just steamed it until the outer leaves were done. That is the key - the outer leaves must be tender. Then, I melted some butter with minced garlic (everything tastes better with garlic butter!) and we had a simple appetizer.

My husband and I celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary this year by enjoying a deliciously home cooked meal. I made Otsu from Super Natural Cooking by Heidi Swanson. I love this cookbook and I love this dish even more. The soba noodles (I splurged on the 100% buckwheat version) were simply boiled and the tofu was lightly fried. These two ingredients were tossed with cucumber (yes!), green onions, cilantro, and sesame seeds. Then the whole dish was slathered in ginger-sesame dressing that had a bit of a kick. Refreshing and filling. The perfect spring dish.

For dessert, I made cocoa-oat truffles. So simple. Way more healthy than regular truffles. So delicious. Just oats, dates, almond butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Process. Roll. Chill. Eat. :)

We went camping with a couple of friends one weekend and had gourmet camping meals. Usually, my husband and I pack as light and lean as possible. We survive on dried fruit, rice, beans, cheese, and hard tack for days. No chopping. No heavy foods. Nothing requiring utensils. Minimal spices.

Our friends like to go all out when camping. This was a fun adventure for us! They even brought a cheese grater! And an entire pouch full of spices! 

The tacos were delicious. :)

We also made chocolate brownies inside oranges in the fire. They didn't photograph well, but they were deliciously fun!

This week, we got my favorite childhood garden vegetable in our CSA box: sugar snap peas. These didn't even make it into the fridge!

These are radish pods. They taste like an intense radish - very spicy! I chopped some up and put it them in cole slaw, which was delicious. However, I also read that they can be pickled. That's what I plan to try next! I'll let you know how it goes!

My last cooking adventure was the most fantastic vegan tacos I've ever had. I ate them for 3 days straight and I'm wondering how soon I can make more. The rice is simply spiced with some tomatoes, onions, and veggie broth. The filling is cremini mushrooms (the best addition ever!) and black beans. Next time I'll add some sliced jalapeƱos too since this wasn't spicy at all. Then, I made a chimichurri sauce from lime juice, olive oil, cilantro, parsley, cumin, and agave nectar. Drizzle that on anything and you have bliss. Top with fresh avocado salsa and the meal is delicious and nutritious. My husband added cheese, of course, but I didn't think it needed any at all. Look for the recipe in the July 2012 issue of Vegetarian Times.

As promised, the Simply Scrumptious Spring Soup recipe! This comes together really quickly if you have already cooked lentils. 

Simply Scrumptious Spring Soup
4-6 servings, 30 minutes with cooked lentils

2 bok choy
1 bunch yukina savoy (or mustard greens)
5 garlic scapes
2 white scallions
2 medium yellow potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup lentils (cooked - I used black lentils)
1/2 cup cilantro
8 cups vegetable broth

  1. Cut the potatoes into 1/2 inch chunks. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium high heat. Add the potatoes and cook for about 5-10 minutes or until brown on the outside, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the vegetable broth (or 8 cups water and 4 teaspoons broth concentrate). Bring to boiling and let cook for another few minutes. Potatoes should be about 60% done before adding the next ingredient.
  3. Meanwhile, chop the bok choy and yukina savoy coarsely. Place the stems in one bowl and the leaves in another bowl. Chop the garlic scapes and place in the bowl with the stems. Chop the white scallions and place in the bowl with the leaves. Chop the cilantro and place in the bowl with the leaves.
  4. Add the contents of the bowl with the stems to the soup. Cook for about 2-4 minutes. Add the contents of the bowl with the leaves as well as the lentils to the soup. Cook for about 1-2 minutes or until the leaves are bright green and the lentils are warm. Season with salt and pepper as needed. 
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