The New Year is literally around the corner in a couple of days and before you hear all about “detoxes”, “juice fasts”, and “cleanses” thrown at you from every direction- I highly recommend easing into new lifestyle and nutrition habits gradually or do so by doing it well and whole. In lieu of this, tomorrow I’ll be sharing an simple yet effective 7-day meal plan all about rebooting and rebalancing after the holiday season and starting fresh for 2015. The Ultimate Vegetable Pot can be a great way to transition into a New Year reboot and rebalance for anyone looking to increase the nutrients in their diet.
Living whole and well isn’t about fads or the need for radical shifts, you can take one baby step at a time, this Ultimate Vegetable Pot is at the top of the list easing you into this lifestyle. This is a great recipe to share with your family, a large group of friends, or anyone who doesn’t have a natural affinity for vegetables. Actually, I highly recommend serving this soup with your family, a big group of friends, all snuggled up on the couch, watching movies, slippers on your feet, and embracing the simplicity of this soup. Another suggestion, is to make a batch of this soup before your busy week starts so you can literally reheat and enjoy it at work or home.
Calling on cabbage. Cabbage is one of the star ingredients with this vegetable pot for a couple reasons, it’s incredibly filling, provides a tender element to the soup, and cabbage is the one vegetable traditionally celebrated on New Years Day. Since I can remember, my parents would cook a traditional New Years Day meal including shredded cabbage or sauerkraut, black-eyed peas, and pork (yet, I’m staying away from that last element in my vegetable pot making this vegan friendly for everyone). Cabbage is one of many cruciferous veggies that are great at supporting your bodies natural detoxification channels, especially since they’re sulfur rich. Why does that matter? Sulfur is required for the making of glutathione, which I’ve talked about before and it’s role in detoxification; it’s also important for strong hair, nails, our muscles, and is involved in the process of making insulin and methionine an essential amino acid.
Making this soup is quite the meditative process, I think that’s why I gravitate towards cooking and the culinary aspects of food just as much as enjoying the science and nutrition related aspect of food. Being in the kitchen, chopping, slicing, and simmering away by the warm stove is completely relaxing and puts me immediately at ease and centered. I hope you all take the time to enjoy the process of this as much as the outcome- as with all my recipes!
I love serving this soup in a large bowl and garnishing it with fresh herbs or ladling it over a bed of fluffed millet or quinoa- these gluten free grains not only give the soup a bit more body and are grounding, but soak up the liquid very nicely. Another lovely way to serve this is with a toasted piece of Nourishing Nut & Seed Bread with a little bit of coconut oil on top or the classic avocado toast, mashed avocado on gluten free toast with a sprinkle of sea salt, red pepper flakes, and lime juice.
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 head cabbage, shredded
- 3 cloves garlic, minced (optional to use fermented black garlic)
- 2 tablespoons miso paste
- 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 teaspoon ground cayenne
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 large carrots, diagonally sliced
- 1 bulb fennel, thinly sliced
- 1 zucchini, cut into bite-size pieces
- 32 ounces canned diced tomatoes
- 4 ounces tomato paste
- 1 cup cooked black-eyed peas
- ½ cup cooked chickpeas
- ½ cup green peas
- 1 handful fresh cilantro or thyme for garnish
- In a medium-large pot, heat coconut oil and add diced onion, garlic, shredded cabbage, and sliced fennel. Stir and cook until soft and flavors developed.
- Add carrots, miso, ginger, cinnamon, cayenne, zucchini, tomatoes, tomato paste, black-eyed peas, chickpeas and water to cover. You may also use low sodium vegetable stock to cover instead of water. Adjust seasonings to your taste.
- Simmer and cook for 45 minutes-1 hour or until all vegetables are tender.
- TO SERVE: An option to serve over a bed of cooked quinoa or millet. Otherwise, enjoy in a bowl with fresh herbs like mint, thyme, or parsley on top. Side of avocado toast as well.
I hope you all welcome this vegetable pot into your home this winter and season, cheers to a New Year full of fresh beginnings…and more vegetables. I’m also SO excited to announce that I’m launching my 7-day Whole Foods Reset & Rebalance plan, as a way to help guide you into living the whole food lifestyle. It includes 20+ pages with 7-days worth of meals and recipes, grocery lists, and tips on making your reset the most effective to support of your bodies natural detoxification- stay tuned for the launch tomorrow!