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July 12, 2011

Recipe for curried cashew soup

Curried-cashew-soup

From Vegetarian Soups for All Seasons, you chose two soups to try, and this vegan curried cashew soup with lots of green vegetables intrigued me, so I cast the deciding vote to make this soup first. The only other soup I've made with a nut base, white gazpacho, relies on ground almonds, and it's a soup with heft. I thought this soup would be thick, too, but it's more broth-like, which makes it perfect for summer. I used garam masala, for a more richly nuanced flavor (though the color, admittedly, isn't particularly lovely). If you don't have it in your pantry, use curry powder, and you'll be rewarded with a beautiful golden soup.

Curried cashew soup

Serves 3-4; can be doubled.

Ingredients

2 tsp canola oil
1 large onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup toasted cashew pieces (I used roasted unsalted cashews)
1/2 tsp minced fresh ginger root
2-1/2 cups water
1 tsp garam masala, or sweet curry powder, or more to taste
1-1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
Zest of half an orange (approximately 1-1/2 tsp)
2 cups of chopped vegetables (I used broccoli and snap peas)
Kosher salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
Sliced scallions and additional chopped cashews for garnish (optional)

Directions

In a Dutch oven or heavy stock pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions, garlic and celery until lightly browned. Remove pan from the heat.

In a food processor, chop the cashews until finely ground. Add the onion mixture from the pot, plus the ginger and 1 cup of water. Process until smooth. Return the mixture to the pot, along with the rest of the water, garam masala or curry powder, and lemon and orange juices. Bring to a simmer and cook on lowest heat for 30 minutes. Remove the pot from heat, and let it sit, covered, for 1 hour.

Bring the pot back to heat. In the meantime, place the vegetables in a microwave-safe bowl with 1 tsp of water. Cover with plastic wrap, and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Stir the steamed vegetables into the soup. Add more water if needed to achieve the consistency you like. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve hot or at room temperature, garnished with scallions and chopped cashews.

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  • I'm Lydia Walshin, a longtime food writer who lives and cooks in a real log house. If I could, I'd eat Chinese noodles, grapes, ice cream and soup every day.
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