Roasted Beetroot and Cauliflower Soup

Roasted Beetroot and Cauliflower Soupwm


1 medium brown onion, peeled and roughly chopped

4 large cloves of garlic, peeled

2 medium beetroots, peeled, roughly chopped into small pieces

1 small head of cauliflower, leaves removed and roughly chopped

1.5 litres of water

6 teaspoons of Massel vegetable stock powder

#optional dairy free sour cream to serve



Preheat your oven to 180c.

Place the onion, garlic, cauliflower and beetroot into an oven pan and dry roast them until the beetroot is cooked and the cauliflower has started to brown.

Place the water and vegetable stock into a large pot. Add the roasted vegetables to the pot and bring it all to the boil.

Blend until all the ingredients are smooth and serve with a swirl of dairy free sour cream.


Yields: 4 serves.

Time: 15-20 minutes of preparation, blending etc. Approximately 45 minutes of cooking time. Cooking time will differ depending on the strength of your oven.

Notes: When the beetroot is almost cooked bring the water and vegetable stock to the boil on your stove top to save time.

Smokey Zucchini & Lentil Soup


Think “smokey”, “spicy”>>>>vegetable packed, nourishing, simple… tasty.



1 large brown onion, peeled and finely sliced

2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and minced

¼ cup of water

1 cup of green brown lentils, washed and drained

1.5 litres of water

6 teaspoons of Massel “beef” stock powder

4 generous cups of grated zucchini

3 cups of grated sweet potato

2 tablespoons of Old El Paso Fajita Seasoning

liquid smoke to taste

hot chilli sauce to taste




Place the onion, garlic and the ¼ cup of water in a large pot. Cook them gently on a medium heat, till the onion softens and the water has mostly evaporated.

Add the lentils, 1.5 litres of water, “beef” stock, zucchini, sweet potato and fajita seasoning to the pot.  Bring to the boil, then turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and cook until the lentils are tender (approx 45 minutes).

Once the lentils are tender add liquid smoke and hot chilli sauce to taste. Check the seasoning and add a little salt and pepper if needed and serve.


Yields: 4 serves

Time: 15 minutes of preparation. 35-45 minutes of cooking time.

Notes: You can get liquid smoke from well stocked delis and American Food Stores.

Smoky Pea Soup w/ Mint Pistou


1 leek

2 medium potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped

3 cups of frozen green peas

2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced

1-2 tablespoons of Mexican fajita seasoning or a tiny touch of liquid smoke

5 cups of vegetable stock

salt and pepper

2 cups of fresh mint leaves, washed

¼ cup of nutritional yeast

1 tablespoon of lemon juice

2 cloves of garlic

1/4 cup of olive oil



Finely slice the white part of the leek and set the rest aside for stock or another recipe. Gently cook the leek and garlic in a medium pot, in a little water (just enough to stop the leek from sticking to the pan while it cooks) until the leek softens. Stir regularly while you cook the leek and add a little more water if you need to.

Add the potatoes and the stock to the pot and bring it to the boil. Once the stock has come to a boil, turn the heat down to a medium simmer and cook until the potato is almost cooked. Just before the potato is ready, add the peas and cook another couple of minutes. Add the Mexican Fajita seasoning or liquid smoke. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste and blend all ingredients until smooth.

While the soup is cooking prepare the mint pistou by simply blending the mint leaves, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil and set aside.

Serve the soup hot with fresh crusty bread and topped with a generous dollop of mint pistou.


Serves:  Serves 4

Time: This only takes about half an hour if you pop a top on your pot to get it to the boil and cut your potato quite small.

Freeze: Suitable.

Notes: Nutritional yeast is an inactive yeast that is rich in B12. It offers body and a cheesy flavour to recipes. It can be purchased in well stocked health food stores.

Liquid smoke offers a plant based smokey flavour to soups and marinades. It can be purchase online and at well stocked delis.

For a lower fat option you can simply omit the pistou.

White Minestrone


White minestrone tends to take a back seat to its tomato based sibling. It’s a perfect alternative to people seeking recipes without tomato though. I use no oil in this dish as I am not trying to brown any of the vegetables and garlic is optional too. I just let the vegetables and flavours speak for themselves. You don’t get the same punchy hit you get from tomato based minestrone, but what does result is an earthy, creamy, nourishing dish, that is calm on the palate.



1 large leek, use only the white part, wash and finely slice it

#optional 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced

1 cup of button mushrooms roughly chopped

1.5 litres of vegetable stock

1 cup of penne pasta

1 small turnip, peeled and cut into a small dice

1 large brown potato, cut into a dice. Make this dice a bit larger than the turnip though because the potato will cook faster than the turnip.

2 cups of green cabbage, finely sliced

2 cups of cauliflower, cut into small florets

1 cup of zucchini, cut into a small dice

1 can of butter beans, washed thoroughly and drained

1 can of chick peas, washed thoroughly and drained



Put the leek and the garlic into a large pot with a little water and sauté till the leeks soften. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook until they too have softened.

Add the stock and bring to the boil.

Add the pasta, potato, turnip. cabbage and cauliflower to the pot and simmer on a gentle heat for 10-15 minutes. Just before the pasta is cooked and the vegetables are tender, add the zucchini, butter beans and chickpeas and simmer for another few minutes.


Serves: 4 to 6

Time: 30-45 minutes

Freezing: Wouldn’t recommend.

Notes: You can use the green part if the leek if you wish. I prefer not to for this dish. I keep the green section and utilise it in other recipes.

Gluten free options would be to eliminate the pasta or simply use gluten free pasta.

tom yum gai (Asian soup recipe)



1.25 litres vegetable stock (I use Massel brand)

1.5 tablespoons of fresh galangal, grated or finely chopped (I didn’t have fresh so I used galangal powder which I found in an Asian grocer)

4 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice

3 tablespoons of vegetarian fish sauce (I get mine on line from the Cruelty Free Store)

2 teaspoons of red curry paste (There are a few without shrimp paste. I used “Maesri Red Curry Paste” which is in a small red tin with a little black and white picture of an elderly Asian lady. Found it in the Asian section in Safeway)

6 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced

I stem of lemon grass. Just use the white section, remove the core and discard it and finely slice the rest

100 grams of shitake mushrooms, leave stems on and cut mushrooms lengthways in 4 large slices

1 cup of fresh bean shoots

1 cup of carrot (cut into matchsticks)

300 grams of fresh rice noodles.

½ cup of fresh mint, washed and roughly chopped

½ cup of coriander, washed and finely chopped

spring onion for garnish (also known as scallions)

# optional~ 1 small red chilli, finely sliced


Heat the vegetable stock in a large pot with the kaffir lime leaves, galangal, lemon grass, red curry paste, fish sauce and lime juice. Bring to the boil and then simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add the mushrooms and carrots and simmer gently for another 2 minutes.

Add the fresh rice noodles and simmer gently till they break up.

Throw in the bean shoots and herbs and serve garnished with some spring onion.


Serves: 4

Time: Takes about 30 minutes

Freezing: Not suitable for freezing

Mushroom & Rosemary Soup

Mushroom and Rosemary Soup wm



2 tablespoons of rice bran oil

1/2 cup of water

1 large brown onion, peeled and roughly chopped

2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped

8 cups of mushrooms (I used cap mushrooms), roughly chopped

3 cups of Bonsoy organic soy milk

1/4 cup of dry white wine

1 cup of vegetable stock

2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary leaves, washed well

1 teaspoon of salt

pepper to taste



Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large non stick pan. Add the onions and cook on a slow to medium heat until they are caramelised. Add the garlic and stir through over a medium heat for a minute or 2. Place in a large pot and set aside.

Heat the remaining oil in the same pan and add the mushrooms. Cook them on a medium heat till soft and  browned. Transfer the cooked mushrooms into the large pot.

Turn the flame up to high under the pan you have cooked the onions and mushrooms in and deglaze it, using the white wine. Pour the  juices, and the remaining ingredients into the pot. Bring the soup to the boil.

Carefully blend. Check the seasoning. Heat again if required and serve.

I often toast some sourdough, drizzle it with olive oil and sprinkle some rock salt over it to serve with the soup.


Yields: 2 large or 4 small

Time: 3o minutes

Notes: If the soup is too thick add vegetable stock until you achieve the consistency you like best.

Mushroom Miso Broth w/ Udon Noodles


1 cup of dried Asian mushrooms, soaked in boiling water for 10 minutes, drained and set aside

1 cup of enoki mushrooms

1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced

½ teaspoon of minced ginger

1 small red chilli, sliced in half, seeds removed and finely sliced

6 x 18 gram sachets of instant miso paste

960mls of boiling water

½ cup of coriander stems, well washed and cut into 1 cm lengths

10 snow peas, top and tailed

10 baby corn

270 grams of udon noodles, cooked as per packet

#optional 1 cup of firm tofu cut into cubes (I use Blue Lotus brand)

¼ teaspoon sesame oil

oil for cooking.



Heat the sesame oil and a little vegetable oil in a large pot. Gently sauté the garlic, chilli and the ginger.

Add the water and the instant miso paste, whisk to combine and bring to a simmer.

Place the cooked udon noodles, the snow peas, corn and enoki mushrooms equally into 2 large bowls.

Add the rest of the ingredients to the miso pot and bring to the boil. Pour into the bowls over the noodles and vegetables.

Servings:  2 large or 4 small.

Time: 20-30 minutes

Freezing: Not suitable

Zucchini & (not Bacon) Chowder


Zucchini & (not Bacon) Chowder


Today was the 4th time I played with this and I’m glad I did. I made it once then lost the recipe which happens because I scrawl them down on scrap paper as I work. It turned out to be a good thing though. I made it again to re write the recipe up as I went but wasn’t quite happy. The 3rd time I decided to grate the zucchini and the result was much nicer than the original dice I had been doing. I also played with the amount of water and seasoning. In my 1st recipe I didn’t use any corn but the 3rd time I threw some I had in the freezer in and it added so much more texture that I decided to make it a part of the dish.

I got thumbs up for this one from my husband too which is so very rare J So I am happy with that.



1-2 tablespoons of rice bran oil

1 large onion, peeled and finely diced

1 teaspoon of minced garlic

500ml of water

250ml of Bonsoy soy milk

1 teaspoon of salt

plenty of fresh ground pepper to taste

1-2  teaspoons of liquid smoke (available at well stocked deli’s and the American Store, which is also online)

6 teaspoons of Massel vegetable stock powder (available in most supermarkets where the stocks are)

4 generous cups cubes (approx 2 large potatoes) of brown potato, peeled and cut into small

4 generous cups (approx 4 medium zucchini) of grated zucchini

2 cups of corn kernels



Heat the oil in a large pot on a low to medium heat. (I tend to sauté my onion in just water mostly these days unless doing a dish like this that would normally be quite meaty and would contain some fats). Sauté the onion gently until browned. Add the garlic and cook for another minute or so.

Add the water, Bonsoy, salt, pepper, liquid smoke. stock powder and potato and bring to the boil. Once the water has boiled, turn the heat down to a very gentle simmer. (You don’t want to reduce the stock too much so you don’t want a furious boil at this stage.) Cook until the potato cubes are about half the way cooked through.

Add half the zucchini and pop a top on your pot. # The soup will look like it needs way more water when you do this and you will be very tempted to add more liquid at this point. DON’T, because zucchini contains a ton of water. Just continue cooking for a few minutes and when the potato is on the cusp of being ready. Turn the heat off.

Using a ladle, scoop out half the soup into another container. Try to ladle a lot of the liquid into the container as well as potato and zucchini. Blend the mixture in the container until it is  smooth.  Add the blended soup back into the pot with the unblended soup and gently stir to combine. #You want to try not to break up the lovely potato chunks as you do this. Throw the rest of the zucchini and corn in, bring the soup to the boil and serve immediately.

Enjoy with your favourite crusty bread.


Yields: 2 FABULOUS serves or 4 more polite serves.

Time: Takes about 30 minutes.

Freeze: I wouldn’t

Notes: I like bold flavours so if you don’t just use the stock and part of the liquid smoke and check the seasoning at the end and decide as to whether you would like the salt and extra smoke.

This is best served straight away. If you have left over’s it may need extra seasoning when you reheat it because of the high water content of the zucchini.

Garnish with some thin slices of red capsicum or long red chilli for color like I have if you wish.

Coconut Pumpkin Korma Soup

This was just born from Xmas Day left overs, but turned out to be a tad incredible.

Think thick, “creamy”, sweet & spicy.


1kg of kent pumpkin that has been peeled, seeded & cut into small chunks

250ml coconut cream (I use Ayam because it’s lovely and thick)

750ml of water

3 teaspoons of Massel vegetable stock powder

6 teaspoons of korma paste


Put the water and stock into a large pot. Whisk to combine and start to bring to the boil.

Add the pumpkin to the stock as soon as it is chopped up. Once the pumpkin is in the stock and the stock has come to the boil turn it down to a simmer and cook until the pumpkin is tender.

Once the pumpkin is cooked, add the coconut cream and korma paste and blend.

Enjoy. It’s delicious!

Yields:  4 serves.

Time: Takes about 30 minutes.

Freeze: Fine to freeze.

Note: If you get your stock on and bring it up to the boil while you are cutting up your pumpkin and if you cut your pumpkin into quite small chunks this can be ready in less than 30 minutes.

You can find Massel Stock Powder in pretty much any supermarket where all the stocks and spices are.

Patak’s Original Korma is vegan.



Pho Bo with Green Bean Noodles

I was so excited to find green bean noodles in an Asian grocer the other day. I didn’t know they even existed. They are actually white but are apparently made of beans and they look just like vermicelli.

Pho is a Vietnamese street dish that is usually made using beef – “Pho Bo” but is also found made with chicken – “Pho Ga”. It apparently originated in Hanoi where we stayed only a couple of years ago whilst touring through Vietnam and Laos but I sadly never had any whilst I was there.

The trick to this dish is allowing the broth time to marry with all the flavours. It’s quite a mellow dish but the flavour is in the broth and with all the coriander and mint that you add at the end. Make sure you use the stems of the coriander because that is where most of the flavour comes from when using coriander. They will also give you a lovely fragrant crunch. Just slice them finely. If you want more heat use bullet chillies instead of long ones as the long ones are quite mild.

I like it just as is with the noodles and some vegetables but for a more filling serve you can add tofu, seitan or tempeh.



1.5 litres of “beef” stock (I use Massel brand which is flavoured beef but contains no animal products)

2 teaspoons of minced ginger

2 star anise

½ cup of tamari (or soy if you do not have tamari or don’t need this to be gluten free)

200grams of green bean noodles (if you don’t have these, vermicelli or any rice noodle is fine.)

2 cups of fresh bean shoots

1 bunch of fresh coriander (also known as cilantro), washed well, roots finely sliced and leaves roughly chopped

1 cup of fresh mint leaves, washed and roughly chopped

2 long red chillies, sliced lengthways and then finely sliced (If you like heat then use bullet chilli)

1 cup of frozen peas

1 lime



Put the stock, ginger, star anise and tamari into a large pot bring it to the boil, then turn the heat down to a gentle simmer for about 25 minutes to allow all the flavours to infuse and the broth to reduce.

Combine the bean shoots, coriander, mint and chilli in a bowl and set aside.

Just before the next step throw the peas into the broth.

Prepare the noodles as per the packet. Using tongs put equal amounts into your serving bowls. Check the seasoning of the broth and if desired add a little extra tamari (or soy) and/or “beef” broth. When you are happy with the flavour ladle the broth over the noodles, top each serve with a generous serve of the herb mix and serve with a lime wedge.


Serves: Makes 2 large serves.

Time: Haven’t recorded this yet.

Freezing: Not suitable.