Curried Apple Pumpkin Soup

 

Curried Apple-Pumpkin Soup

We found this recipe Curried Apple Pumpkin Soup, in the October coconut sugar2012 issue of Prevention. This soup is a gluten-free and vegan food.

Pumpkin is full of cancer fighting properties, which includes beta-carotene (read more here: Pumpkins Ability to Fight Cancer). For better absorption of this phytonutrient, pair it with a healthy fat, which we did using coconut oil.

Phytonutrients or phytochemicals are natural occurring chemicals that help protect plants from germs, fungi, bugs, and other threats. In turn when you eat the plant food and its phytonutrient, you get that protection as well.

Okay, enough of the science, and on to the featured recipe. Oh, by the way, you will note we used coconut sugar in the recipe.

Coconut sugar is a perfect 1:1 replacement for refined sugar. It has naturally occurring nutrients like magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron and 8 vitamins and amino acids.

Here’s a FACT: The coconut palm tree produces up to 75% more sugar per acre than cane sugar and uses only 20% of the resources.

Coconut sugar will not spike your blood sugar, making it a great food for diabetics.  Coconut sugar is a vegan food and great for gluten-free cooking and baking.

ingredients for Curried Apple Pumpkin SoupOn to the featured recipe, and here is what you will need:

1 large Granny Smith apple

1 tbsp. coconut oil

1 small yellow onion, chopped

1 tbsp. red curry powder

2 tbsp. ginger, fresh, grated or chopped

1 tsp. garlic, minced

2 cups fresh water

2 cups pureed pumpkin

Himalayan salt and coconut sugar to taste

Preparing Instructions

Melt oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Next add chopped apple and cook until golden in color. Next add onion, curry powder, ginger, and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring until soften and when you are able to smell the onion and garlic.

Stir in the water and pumpkin (add more water if too thick). Simmer stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.

Season the soup with Himalayan salt and coconut sugar, if desired. Serves 4 soup bowls.

We found the soup has a warmer flavor of ginger when aloud to set for a day or two. Enjoy!!

 

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Cooking With Honey – The Healthy Sweetener

honey

 

If you want to be able to cook sweets without the negative health effects of refined sugar, honey is an excellent option. Among other reasons, honey is metabolized more slowly by your body, meaning that you are less likely to get a sugar “high” after eating something made with honey.

Honey can be challenging to cook with, though, for several reasons. So many people don’t cook with it because they don’t know how. But once you know how to use honey in your favorite kitchen creations, it’s not hard at all to use.

The first challenge that honey presents is that it burns easily than sugar does. This problem is usually eliminated by doing your cooking or baking at a slightly lower heat. To prevent burning lower the temperature 25 degrees than what the recipe calls for.

honey is like liquid The main hurdle to cooking with honey is that it is a liquid. Replacing sugar with honey will ruin some recipes if you don’t make an allowance for the extra liquid that the honey adds. Reduce other liquids in the recipe by 1/4 cup for every cup of honey used after the first, depending on the recipe.

Also when replacing honey for sugar, it will be equal amounts. That is 1 cup of honey for 1 cup of sugar.

With most muffins, simple quick breads, and yeast breads, you can make the substitution without any adjustment. Cakes, cookies and some other recipes you should decrease the amount of liquid in the recipe to account for the honey.

Honey is also very easy to use in pies. Since they are already somewhat liquid, you can replace the sugar with honey. If the pie filling seems too runny, just add a little extra thickener before you pour it in your pie shell.

To prevent the honey sticking to the measuring spoon or cups, lubricate the spoons and cups with water, oil or egg white.  This will facilitate easy and accurate honey measurements.

bee pollinating flowersThe flavor of honey can sometimes be an issue that is depending on the flowers the honey bee pollinates. Examples of differing flavors are clove, orange, raspberry or lavender blossoms.

Depending on how sweet or not sweet you want your recipe to be try one of the following :

1.Darker honey for a sweeter, more potent flavor

2. Lighter-colored honey for a more subtle flavor

Cooks.com advises to mix in 1/4 tsp. baking soda for every cup of honey if baking soda is not already included in the recipe. They say you will cut honey’s acidity this way.

When shopping for honey they also state that a 12-ounce jar of honey is equivalent to an 8-ounce cup for liquid measurements.

Remember to store your honey in an airtight container to prevent it from absorbing any moisture outside the container. It will also help keep the honey indefinitely. Also keep it at room temperature to facilitate use in baking, as cold honey thickens and hot honey’s flavor can become distorted.

Article Header Image credit: subbotina / 123RF Stock Photo

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