Curried Cream of Broccoli Soup

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[UPDATED November 2, 2012: This ain’t a new recipe (it’s from almost TWO years ago!), but it continues to be popular and the old photos were all kinds of horrible, so I updated this post with new pics. Enjoy (again!)]

This recipe is a perfect example of what I call garbage soup: I pull out whatever vegetables are left in my crisper and throw them in a pot with some pre-made broth. This formula works with just about anything, but if you happen to have some broccoli florets and leeks in the fridge, make this blitzed cream of broccoli soup. My chef sis told me a long time ago that her secret ingredient in pureed soups is a bit of diced apple so I always toss some in.

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Here’s what to gather to feed 4-6 people:

  • 1½ pounds broccoli
  • 4 leeks, cleaned and trimmed 
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 medium shallots
  • ¼ medium apple, diced
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or fat of choice
  • 1 quart organic chicken broth or bone broth
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly-ground black pepper
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Here’s how to make it:

Trim and chop up the broccoli into roughly uniform-sized pieces.

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Don’t waste the broccoli stems. Just trim off the hard, woody exterior and cut up the soft flesh underneath. 

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Roughly chop the alliums. Remember any combination works — if you’ve only got onions, dice up two large ones.

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Dice up the apple.

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Once your veggies are prepped, melt the coconut oil over medium heat in a large stock pot. 

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Add the leeks, onions, and shallots and sauté until softened (5-10 minutes). 

Throw in the chopped broccoli and apple, and…

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…add the chicken broth. Top off with some water if the vegetables aren’t fully submerged.

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Crank the heat up to high to bring the soup to a boil.

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Lower to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

Next, add the curry powder and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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 Turn off the stove and let the soup cool slightly. Then, use an immersion blender to blitz the ingredients.

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The result should be a smooth, aromatic green broth. 

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Add the coconut milk and stir to incorporate it into the soup.

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Turn the heat to high, and bring the soup back up to a boil. 

Ladle into bowls and serve immediately.

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To make this a one pot meal, mix in some leftover meat and dig in.

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Slow Cooker Lemongrass and Coconut Chicken Drumsticks

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Since I had leftover lemongrass from making Bo Kho and I always have coconut milk in the pantry, I decided to make a slow cooker chicken drumstick dish with these ingredients. After scouring my Asian cookbooks and the interwebs, I came across this recipe for Roasted Lemongrass Chicken. I Paleo-ized the recipe, added some five-spice powder, and threw the ingredients in the slow cooker instead of the oven. Super easy and delicious!

The recipe and step-by-step photos, after the jump!

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Curried Ground Pork and Broccoli Slaw Frittata

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I was inspired to make a frittata a tonight after seeing the yummy ones posted on The Paleo Table , Balanced Bites, and Everyday Paleo blogs. Plus, I woke up later than usual tonight, so I needed a dish that I could throw on the table pretty quickly.

For dinner, I like to make really meat-heavy frittatas — kinda like Cha Trung Hap, the steamed egg and pork meatloaf thingy you get when you order rice plate at some Vietnamese places. (Come to think of it, I bet I could make a Paleo version with kelp noodles…)

I decided to make a curry-flavored frittata with ground pork and broccoli slaw since I had those ingredients readily available. I followed the same frittata guidelines that I posted previously with some slight modifications that I’ll detail below. There’s no hard and fast rule for how to make frittatas, so feel free to experiment!  

Here’s what I assembled to serve 4 people:

  •  ½ onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound of ground pork
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of shredded broccoli slaw
  • 6 large eggs
  • ½ cup of shredded carrots
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon of curry powder
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped Italian parsley
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

And here’s what I did with all this stuff:

I assembled all the ingredients…

… heated up the coconut oil on medium heat in an 8-inch cast iron skillet (you can use a slightly larger skillet but I like frittatas that slice up thick), and sautéed my onions with a dash of salt until they were softened.

I added the ground pork and garlic…

…and stir fried until the meat was no longer pink.

While the pork and onions were cooking, I whisked my eggs with the coconut milk, curry powder, salt, pepper, and parsley.

I don’t have an exact measurement for the salt and pepper. Just don’t be too heavy-handed ‘cause the filling will be seasoned as well.

Then I added the broccoli slaw and carrots to the pork and onions and sprinkled everything with salt and pepper.

I poured on the egg mixture and cooked the frittata for ~5 minutes to set the bottom.

I tried to cover the frittata but the skillet was filled to the brim.

I put my frittata in my preheated toaster oven set on broil. I would’ve put it in at a lower temperature (350 F) but I didn’t have 20-30 minutes to spare. Around ten minutes later, the edges were browned and puffy. But when I touched the center, it was a little gushy — and when I cut it in half, it was still kinda liquid-y. Darn it! 

So I popped the frittata back under the broiler for another few minutes to firm up the middle. The split down the middle helps speed up the cooking — it’s just not as pretty if you’re planning to serve the frittata whole.

I served the slices with some nuked frozen veggies (which we deemed not photo-worthy) and we dug in.

Easy Paleo Frittata

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You can essentially turn any leftover meat into a frittata.  All you do is dice up the meat, chop up some veggies (frozen veggies are perfect), sauté them in an oven-safe skillet, add some eggs and dairy/coconut milk, and pop it all in the oven until it sets.  You can add herbs, sautéed onion, minced garlic, whatever! You can decide how fancy you wanna be. 

Here’s just one example of how you can throw together a simple frittata.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil or fat of choice
  • 1 cup emergency protein (whatever cooked meat you have on hand)
  • 1 cup frozen broccoli (or any leftover or frozen veggies)
  • 4 large pastured eggs
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly-ground black pepper

First, preheat the toaster oven to 350°F and heat the coconut oil in an 8-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat. Then, add whatever protein you have on hand (here, I used some leftover spicy lamb merguez sausage and onions) to the skillet and stir-fry until heated through.

Meanwhile, place the frozen broccoli in a medium microwave-safe bowl, cover it with a wet paper towel and nuke it until it’s thawed. Use a pair of kitchen shears or a knife to cut the broccoli into bite-sized pieces.

Add the broccoli to the ingredients in the pan and mix to cook thoroughly.

Crack the eggs into a medium bowl, and add the coconut milk, salt, and a few grinds of pepper.

Pour the egg mixture into the skillet and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until the bottom of the frittata is set.

Place the skillet in the oven. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, and then crank the heat up to broil for another 2 minutes or until the frittata puffs up and is cooked all the way through.

Carefully transfer the frittata to a plate, slice, and serve.

The frittata is delicious cold so it’s perfect for leftovers!