Cleanse your system the fun way The words cleanse and detox often cause strong, guarded reactions. The idea of deprivation or consuming bizarre foods you can’t even pronounce is simply not appealing to most. But before you turn and run… truth bomb: you don’t have to […]
Watermelon is good, and good for you Seriously, what’s more refreshing than watermelon on a hot summer day? In life, I rarely think, I want some watermelon. But then summer rolls around and I take my first bite and I’m like oh yeah, this stuff is […]
Cool for the Summer: Raw Vegan Creamy Celery Herb Soup
Ohhhh yes, this raw vegan creamy celery herb soup recipe is a win! More raw soup. Souper delicious. Souper healthy. Creamy. Refreshing. Bursting with layers of flavor.
So I went to the local farmer’s market Saturday morning and loaded up on organic veggies. Forgetting I already had two full stalks of celery in the fridge, I bought another giant stalk. And when I got home, I realized I had to make something using mass quantities of celery, stat. Soup seemed like the obvious choice. And given that it’s the dead of summer, raw soup it would be.
A taste of Provence
I had one lonely avocado in the fridge so I pulled that out to lend the soup a creamy factor, then decided I’d add some garlic, ginger, and lemon. And by stroke of good fortune, I’d also picked up a packet of Herbs de Provence at the farmer’s market on a whim – it’s not a blend I typically cook with, but it turned out to be the perfect addition to balance out the light, refreshing flavors of the produce with a hint of savory earthiness.
Without any particular agenda or theme in mind, I also happened to pick up some fresh lavender at the market. The universe was clearly steering me through that market, taking me straight back to the French countryside.
When I studied abroad, I went on a trip to Provence in the South of France, and the first memory that springs to mind when I reminisce is wandering through the local market, assessing the fresh produce, smelling the lavender, an doing my best to converse with the vendors in passable French. The day’s acquisitions couldn’t have been more appropriate. Soup’s on!
Spice blends: Herbs de Provence vs Italian Seasoning
In case you’re unfamiliar with it or haven’t yet made this addition to your spice rack, herbs de Provence is a fabulous spice blend. While the specific blend varies depending on the spice maker, it typically includes some combination of dried thyme, marjoram, summer savory, rosemary, mint, fennel, bay leaf, sage, basil, oregano and – often – lavender. Most blends will not include all of the above, but if you do a quick search you’ll find quite a wide variety of recipe blends.
In my opinion, lavender is the key player. It’s what truly sets Herbs de Provence apart from Italian seasoning, another common spice blend thats composed of many of the same spices. As the HdP flavor combination works well with everything (so says the spice master at the market), it’s fair to say that the two blends are often interchangeable in recipes. The choice to use one over the other may simply boil down to taste preference.
But the flavor profiles are in fact distinct, and absolutely worth exploring in their own right. While lavender is the obvious difference, generally, the savory, thyme, fennel, and chervil fall more in the HdP territory, while parsley, garlic, onion, and pepper are typically on team Italian.
Anyhoo, back to the soup.
I threw all the ingredients in my blender with 2 cups of cold water, and within a a couple minutes, had some delicious raw soup on my plate. I seasoned the soup with a touch of black pepper and a pinch of lavender sea salt that’s been waiting verrry patiently in my cabinet for just the right introduction to my palette since my trip to Croatia a couple summers ago, and it was delicious.
But honestly, the flavors of the soup are robust enough that it can easily be enjoyed without any salt or pepper. I highly encourage you give it a fair taste test before adding salt or pepper!
Raw Vegan Creamy Celery Herb Soup Recipe
- 1 stalk of celery (a whole head), roughly chopped enough to fit in your blender
- 1 avocado (I used one of Trader Joe’s tiny avocados – half of a normal size would work, or use a whole normal size for an extra creamy soup)
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- 1-inch piece of ginger
- juice of 1 lemon (about 2 tbsp)
- 1 tsp herbs de Provence
- 2 cups cold (or warm) filtered water
- salt and pepper to taste, on serving
How to Make:
- Clean and chop the celery, peel the garlic and ginger, juice the lemon.
- Add all ingredients to the blender except the salt and pepper.
- Blend. Taste. Serve. Enjoy!
Eat like a rabbit My family celebrates Easter, and I celebrate any excuse to make treats. And of course I’m always on a mission to satisfy my sweet tooth in a healthier way, using real, whole foods ingredients and as little sugar (never refined of […]
Homemade sugar-free Nutella happened
I knew I had to try to get something with hazelnuts onto my sugar-free chocolate menu, because chocolate-hazelnut is one of my favorite flavor combinations ever. Hello Nutella. I did not grow up with this stuff, but my world expanded in more ways than one when I studied abroad in Paris. There, my diet primarily consisted of only the finest of foods: fresh bread, cheese, and Nutella (…this is only a slight exaggeration). (more…)
The Brownie Project So I obviously needed to include brownies in my week of sugar-free chocolate treats. But the brownie project proved to be a bit stubborn. After a couple close-but-not-quite attempts, I decided to try a different tack and go with a raw bite rendition of the classic […]