I asked for a cookbook for Christmas this year from Jim and got two. The one I asked for was Vegan Brunch. The bonus cookbook was 400 recipes for soup. He admitted that the cookbook was as much for him as it was for me. The man loves his soup.
Soup is an awesome way to eat lots of vegetables. It's also extremely versatile. It's a great way to round out just about any menu, as you can find a soup recipe for just about any ingredient or any cuisine. Nearly any soup recipe will freeze beautifully, making it a go-to for the busiest nights. (Just don't freeze soup with pasta in it, and expect most potato pieces to fall apart when the soup is reheated.) I'm pretty sure I've written a similar paen to soup on this blog before, and I'll probably write one again. I'm not sorry. I'm also pretty sure you're going to see a lot more soup recipes here before too long.
This soup is not from the cookbook I got at Christmas; it's from one of those bargain cookbooks without an author that you find in the remaindered section of the bookstore. This one was just called "Vegan Recipes" and was $2. That's less than half the price of most magazines - who cares that most of the recipes were the same old, same old. It was worth it for this recipe alone.
I'm sending this over to My Legume Love Affair, the creation of Susan at The Well Seasoned Cook, and hosted this month by Simona of Briciole.
The secret to good peanut soup is to use peanut butter with no sugar or other sweetener added - this soup should not be sweet. I used blue potatoes this time, but I usually use red-skinned ones.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced, about 2 cups
1 large red bell pepper, diced small, or a mix of red and green pepper
3 stalks celery, diced small
2 carrots, diced small
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon mild chili powder (I used Mexican style with cumin)
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
2/3 cup frozen or fresh corn
8 ounces potatoes, 3/4-inch dice
3-1/2 to 4 cups vegetable broth
1/3 cup unsweetened peanut butter
3/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
chopped peanuts, for garnish
Heat oil in a soup pot. Sauté onion, bell pepper, celery and carrots until vegetables are becoming tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, chili powder and cayenne and cook for 1 minutes. Add corn, potatoes, vegetable broth and peanut butter. Bring to a low boil, reduce to a simmer, and cover. Cook for 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Add salt and pepper and adjust seasonings to taste.
Serve garnished with chopped peanuts.