Sweet Potato, Carrot, Apple and Red Lentil Soup.
This warm, hearty, delicious soup can be created with local vegetable and fruit. Sourcing local or Canadian ingredients and enjoying a plant based recipe is good for the environment as well as your pocket book.
2 tbsp oil of your choice
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
1 apple, peeled and chopped
1 onion chopped
1/2 cup red lentils rinsed
1/2 tsp minced fresh garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp paprika
4 cups of vegetable broth
Saute the sweet potato, carrots, onion, and apple in a large pot.
Stir and cook until the onions are translucent about 10 minutes.
Stir the lentils, ginger and all the spices into the sauted vegetables, add the broth. Bring the soup to a boil over high heat then reduce the heat to medium low, cover and simmer until lentils and vegetables are soft about 30 minutes.
Use your immersion blender to puree the soup right in the pot.
Add water, more broth or apple juice to thin the soup to your preferred consistency. Add more seasoning if needed.
Enjoy the sweet, creamy warmly spiced soup.
This recipe makes a large pot of soup. Keeps well in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. To freeze fill mason jars leaving 1 1/2 inch of empty space before closing tightly.
Grocery prices are on the rise, it so important for our health and budget to plan wisely. The cost for local, nutrient rich vegetable staples can be found at reasonable prices. This following absolutely delicious plant based recipe uses red lentils, garlic, zucchini, onion and carrots.
Prep time 5 minutes. Cooking time 25 minutes.
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 med onion minced
4 cloves garlic minced
2 -3 medium carrots peeled and grated or shredded
1/2 small zucchini grated
1 pinch salt
26 ounces your favourite sauce or use pureed tin tomatoes adding garlic, salt, and italian spices
1 pinch red pepper flakes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1Tbsp sweetener, sugar or alternative
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup dry red lentils ( rinsed and drained)
Heat oil in large rimmed skillet add onions and garlic. Salute for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until slightly softened and fragrant.
Add grated carrots, zucchini and salt. Cook 3-4 minutes more, then add marinara sauce and stir to coat.
Add red pepper flakes, basil, oregano, sugar, water, and lentils. Increase heat to simmer, then reduce to low, and continue cooking until lentils are tender- stirring occasionally- about 17-20 minutes. Add a bit more water if mixture gets too thick.
Once lentils are cooked, taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
Optional: handful of fresh spinach to the final 5 minutes of cooking.
Serve on top of your favourite pasta, spiralized zucchini or squash.
Lentil Bolognese keeps for 3 days in fridge or in freezer for up to a month.
Roasted Cauliflower Soup.
What could be more comforting then a delicious bowl of soup made from local veg and herbs.
1 1/2 lbs of cauliflower or one large head
3 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion diced
2 celery ribs diced
3 1/2 cups veg broth
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 tsp dry
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
To garnish: Optional, 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Toss cauliflower and garlic cloves in the olive oil, roast at 400 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add onion and celery saute until tender, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Chop roasted garlic. Add garlic roasted cauliflower, veg broth, thyme and rosemary.
Reduce heat to simmer, cook until cauliflower is tender, about 20-25minutes.
Using an immersion blender (or in batches in a blender or food processor) blend until smooth.
Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
Ladle in bowls, top with grated cheese, serve with a hearty grain bread.
Enjoy! What a great time of year to find local cauliflower and onions. For a variation use a bit less cauliflower and roast a carrot and add a peeled chopped patoto to the stock.
So yummy and quite economical as well.
Quick N Delish is a series of convenient, healthy, affordable, environmental and—most importantly—delicious plant-based recipes and cooking videos brought to you by our own Susan Biehn-Smith.
Susan is a retired pre-and post-natal nutrition educator. She is a mother of three adult children and Omee (grandma) to four grandchildren. She helped establish the community gardens in Bracebridge, she loves to putter in the garden growing veg beside her pollinating plants. Susan enjoys playing with recipes, tweaking them to include local grown veggies and beans. She focuses on ease of preparation and superb taste. She encourages you to substitute ingredients using plant-based foods that you have on-hand.
Although her teaching is light and humorous, her message is seriously rooted in concern for the environment and the changing climate.
Find a complete list of Susan’s Recipes – Here
With garden tomatoes, peppers, garlic and onions harvested it is a great time to make Salsa.
8 jalapeno peppers (wear gloves when handling)
7 cups tomatoes
2 cups onions
1 cup green pepper
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro.
3 cloves garlic
Pulse the above ingredients, make sure you leave it a bit chunky.
Place all in a large pot.
3/4 cup vinegar
1 cup tomatoe paste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tsp ground cayenne
Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until desired consistency.
Follow a canning recipe.
Makes 4 to 5 pints.
My latest favorite chili recipe is seasoned with cocoa, cinnamon and molasses. This is a great time of year to use up your tomatoes and garlic scapes you have in your pantry or freezer
454 g or 1lb of dry Canadian red kidney beans rehydrated according to package or use 1 28oz can kidney bean or any mixture of beans you enjoy.
Saute the following in order:
- 2 tbsp oil of your choice
- 2 med. onions, chopped
- 2 stalk celery, chopped
- 1 carrot chopped or grated
- 2 cloves of garlic minced or 2 tbsp frozen scapes
- 1/2 small zucchini chopped or grated (optional)
- 1 mild pepper any color. chopped
- 1 tbsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp cocoa powder
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp molasses
Stir vegetables and spices until well covered
- 1 28 fl oz diced tomatoes or 4 cups frozen tomatoes chopped1
- 5.5 oz tomato paste
- 1/2 cup of frozen corn (optional)
- Add water, tomato or vegetable juice to create the consistency you prefer.
Cook on medium heat for 45 minutes stir frequently.
Add more spices if needed. For optimal flavor cook chili the day before serving. Serve with bread or tortilla chips ENJOY!!
Stay-Home Winter Soup
Cold, snowy weather looks beautiful from your window. After a brisk walk, snowshoe or ski, you’re craving a warm bowl of homemade soup. You gaze into your fridge and see carrots, a couple pieces of wilted celery, a small broccoli head, and extra broccoli stocks you saved: Ingredients that are the beginnings of a delicious 30-minute soup.
Quick-N-Delish Winter Soup.
- 2 carrots chopped
- 1 pc of celery chopped
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 potatoes peeled and chopped.
- 2 small heads and stocks of broccoli
Sauté the above with oil of your choice or a little butter for 5 minutes
Add water to lightly cover
1/2 cup of bouillon or veg stock of your choice (salt-free, if desired).
- 1 tsp dry thyme
- 1 tsp dry ginger
- 1 tbsp dry parsley
- bay leaf
- salt and pepper to taste.
Season with more of the above if needed.
Cook until potatoes and carrots are soft.
Remove the bay leaf and using an immersion blender, blend to the consistency of your choice.
I served this delicious soup with warm spelt soda bread.
Chick Pea Loaf
I am going to share one of my all-time favourite seasonal recipes. This delicious vegetarian loaf can replace any holiday protein and still offer all the flavours of the season. The vegetarians in the family – myself included – look forward to this festive main course loaf. This loaf also makes a terrific substitute for stuffing.
- 3 cups chickpeas canned drained or rehydrated.
- 1 cup of finely-chopped celery
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onions
- 1 cup bread crumbs (gluten-free breadcrumbs work as well)
- 1/3 cup tomato sauce or ketchup
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp flour any type
- 1 cup ground nuts (almond, walnuts, peanuts etc)
- 1 tsp sage
- 1 tsp thyme
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- 2 eggs lightly beaten
(I often mash chickpeas and use the food processor to finely chop other ingredients.)
1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2) Mash chickpeas and put in good size bowl
3) Add remaining ingredients and mix well
4) Turn into a well-oiled 9x5x3 Loaf Pan
5) Bake for 45 or 50 minutes
This loaf can be sliced warm and served with cranberry sauce and/or vegetarian gravy. A delicious accompaniment to your root vegetables at this festive holiday time.
Leek, Carrot, Parsnip and Ginger Soup
Some of us still have leeks and carrots in the ground. Carrots and parsnips should be ok, but unfortunately, the leeks may be sad or spoiled. If you happen to have harvested and stashed these local veggies, this is a soup for you. This is a bowl of Winter Solstice comfort, enjoy with your favourite bread.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cups leeks sliced
1 oz fresh ginger root peeled and finely chopped
3 cups parsnip roughly chopped
2 cups carrots roughly chopped
1 1/4 cups apple juice or dry white wine
5 cups vegetable stock or water
salt and pepper to taste
paprika sprinkle to finish.
Sauté in the order listed and add liquid once veggies soften. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes until parsnip and carrots are tender.
Puree in a food processor or use your hand wand blender.
Lentil Carrot Soup with Rosemary
What is more comforting than making a pot of delicious soup on a cool day? Lentil carrot soup seasoned with Rosemary is quick and delish.
- 1 cup dried green or brown lentils
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 2 carrots finely chopped
- 2 sprigs of Rosemary chopped or 1 tsp dry
- 2 bay leaves
- 14oz diced tomatoes (good opportunity to use your frozen garden tomatoes)
- 7 1/2 cups vegetable stock
Place lentils in a bowl covered with cold water. Leave to soak for 2 hours. Rinse and drain well. Or rinse lentils, place in a pot, cover with cold water, cook for 15 minutes, drain.
Heat oil in a large saucepan. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes, then stir in celery, carrots, rosemary, bay leaves and lentils. Toss over the heat for 1 minute until thoroughly covered in the oil.
Pour in the tomatoes and stock, bring to a boil. Lower the heat, half cover the pan and simmer for about 45 minutes or until lentils are perfectly tender. Remove the bay leaves, add salt and black pepper to taste.
Delicious apple chutney using local or wild apples, is a great accompaniment to eggs, a cheese tray or to create a gourmet-style grilled cheese sandwich.
Chutney makes a yummy condiment for any curry.
Make a batch fill new 1/2 pint Mason jars followed by the proper canning procedure and you have some lovely homemade gifts.
- 2 lbs of tart peeled apples cored and cut finely
- 1lb (local) onions cut finely
- 2/3 cup raisins
- 2/3 cup golden raisins
- 2 cups soft brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 2 cups apple cider vinegar plus more if needed to add as the chutney boils down.
Put all ingredients in a large pan or pot, simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours over low medium heat. Stir regularly to make sure sugar does not burn add more vinegar as necessary as chutney reduces.
Turn off the heat and let the chutney settle.
Process jars of chutney for 12 minutes if using as a pantry item or as gifts.
To use within 2 weeks refrigerate without processing.
If freezing without processing, allow 1/2 inch headspace for expansion.
Makes 3-5 pints
Black Bean & Corn Salsa
This Black bean salsa recipe has been a summer staple as a meal or as a potluck offering. I make this dish using my garlic or scapes, fresh herbs and tomatoes. I serve it with a bowl of tortilla chips over a bed of garden greens or on a pita or wrap.
Black bean salsa is a great source of dietary fibre and folacin.
1 can (19oz, 540ml) black beans rinsed and drained
or rehydrated dry beans
1 cup fresh cooked, frozen or canned corn
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp lime juice or cider vinegar
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro, parsley or basil
½ tsp minced garlic clove or 1 tsp finely chopped garlic scape
Optional- ½ tsp of cumin
Pepper and salt to taste
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and toss gently. Keeps well in the fridge for 2 days.
Before serving add 1 cup of freshly chopped tomato and/or avocado.
Contributed by Susan Biehn-Smith for Climate Action Muskoka
A sweet treat – Basic Wild Berry Muffins
We have all probably had many rambles down a gravel road or trail, finding nature’s treasures along the way. Mid-summer brings with it wild berries. I often bring a small one-cup container with a lid on my ramble to collect these delicious gifts of summer.
Basic Wild Berry Muffins are a wonderful way to celebrate the berry season and to share your delicious jewels with others.
Wild berries are delicate and need to be handled gently. After picking out all the leaves and stems I place the berries on a plate coating them in 1 tbsp of all-purpose flour. Coating the berries will keep them from bleeding into the batter.
2 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 large eggs
¼ cup margarine or butter melted
1 cup milk of your choice
1 tsp grated lemon peel
1 cup fresh wild berries or cultivated berry fresh or frozen
Measure first 4 ingredients into a large bowl. Stir, make a well in the centre.
Combine the next 4 ingredients into a small bowl. Add to well.
Fold berries in very gently until just moistened. Fill 12 greased muffin cups ¾ full. Bake in a 375-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in the centre of a muffin comes out clean.
Let stand in pan for 5 minutes before removing.
Makes 12 muffins.
Contributed by Susan Biehn-Smith for Climate Action Muskoka
Southwest Quinoa Salad
Susan Biehn-Smith of Quick N delish writes, ‘Enjoy a delicious quinoa salad with black beans, corn and colorful peppers. This plant based salad is a full meal and a great accompaniment to a grain bowl. Quinoa takes no time to cook, less than rice. This grain is high in fiber is a good source of protein and gluten free. Quinoa is starting to be grown in Ontario and the prairie provinces.’
Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie
Episode 5, April 2021 — view printable PDF Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie
Quick N Delish: Episode 5 — Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie. This plant-based main is a Biehn Smith family favourite. It has tender lentils in a rich gravy, topped with creamy mashed potatoes and baked until bubbly. It’s also very substitution-friendly. Frozen vegetables and whatever you have in your fridge work really well too!
Recipe PDF Easy Lentil Shepherd’s Pie. Video recorded April 2021.
Quick N Delish: Episode 4 — Carrot Muffins. This is Susan’s favourite carrot muffin recipe.This hearty carrot muffin is a terrific grab-and-go for all ages, including babies over eight months. It’s moist and nutritious and freezes well. For more protein, add 3/4 cup of chopped and toasted nuts. Made with Canadian carrots, applesauce, oil, flour, local eggs and craisins.
Recipe PDF Carrot Muffins. Video recorded March 2021.
Bean “Meat” Balls and Spaghetti
Quick N Delish: Episode 3 — Bean “Meat” Balls and Spaghetti. This is a delicious flavourful plant-based Bean “Meat” Ball recipe served with spaghetti. Recipe PDF – Bean “Meat” Balls and Spaghetti. Recorded March 2021.
Caribbean Chickpea Curry with Potatoes
Quick N Delish: Episode 2 — Caribbean Chickpea Curry with Potatoes. Recipe PDF – Caribbean Chickpea Curry with Potatoes. Recorded February 2021.
“Made this and loved it” – Len
Vegetable Soup with a taste of Tuscany
Quick N Delish: Episode 1 — Host Susan Biehn Smith shows us how to prepare a delicious soup using fall or winter pantry vegetables. Susan shares her successful experiences growing vegetables as well as easy ways to preserve and capture summer flavours. Recipe PDF – Vegetable Soup with a Taste of Tuscany. Recorded January 2021