Sopa de Albondigas (Meatball Soup)

finalComfort food staples for some Mexicans include sopa de albondigas, or meatball soup. Whether it starts a meal or is the main star, albondigas always satisfies in the nostalgia-takes-me-back-to-my-youth department.  The rich flavorful broth married with a spiced-filled albondiga (a.k.a. meatball) makes a great addition to any dinner…or lunch… or even breakfast (why not!).

So I have taken the meat out of the ball and instead used delicious, nutrient-dense chickpeas. The chickpeas really help create a dense, filling ball.  It is very similar to falafel, just with a few twists.  Not sure if I can call it a meatball if it technically is not made with meat.  Hmmm. Well whatever they are call they sure are tasty. Continue reading

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Vegan Pozole

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When the weather turns chilly the best way to fill up on is with a nice, steaming bowl of soup. It warms you up from the inside out.  When looking a great vegan soup I think pozole is a good way to go.  Traditionally, pozole is a pork and hominy soup with a spicy chile base but it is just as easy to nix the pork and still have a delicious bowl to fill up on.  As a bonus, the vegan version is ready to serve in less than an hour.

This recipe keeps the heat level on the mild side.  Ancho chiles tend to have a bite to them without being too hot.  If you feel the need to bump it up a notch you can always add guajillo or dried chipotle peppers.

In addition the garnishes play just as much a role in the soup as the soup itself so don’t skimp on them.  I like mine with a lot of lemon, lettuce, onion and a few slices of radishes. Plus I always crush up tortilla chips into the bowl and let them soak up the spice-filled broth. Continue reading

Locro de Papa (Potato Cheese Soup)

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It is soup season.  Time to whip up a hearty, satisfying soup to help keep the cold at bay. What a better way to heat up those tummies then with some potato soup.  Creamy goodness is just a few minutes away.

Ecuadorian Locro de Papa is a rich soup made of potato, cheese and corn.  Meant to keep you warm while in the Andes, this soup screams comfort food.  It is creamy, starchy, cheesy and full of flavor.  The soup is usually garnished with avocado which makes it even more decadent.  All I can say is be prepared to be blown away. Continue reading

Potato Soup

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Potatoes-Can they do no harm?  They are tasty, hearty, cheap, filling and did I mention tasty?  Although there are many dishes that include potatoes I think one of my favorite ways to prepare them is in a simple soup.  A warm bowl of soup.  A steamy pot of earthy goodness. It is just really simple but really delicious.  Just some potatoes and tomatoes.  A few spices and voila!  A masterpiece is created. Continue reading

Porotos Guisado (Argentinean Bean and Vegetable Stew)

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Hearty vegetables will always yield a delicious meal and this stew is no exception.  Good stick to your ribs veggies like potatoes, sweet potatoes and zucchini are simmered with a little sofrito (tomatoes, onions, garlic, spices).  Then beans and peas are added to the stew to create the ultimate in one-pot meals.  Did I mention the creation only takes about thirty minutes to make?  Can’t go wrong. Continue reading

Sopa de Azteca (Aztec Soup)

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Sopa de Azteca, or Aztec Soup, is a very easy and tasty version of tortilla soup.  A simple tomato-based soup is topped with tortillas, avocado and a sprinkling of cheese.  All there is to it. The key is to have a well seasoned, tomatoey base for flavor.  Lots and lots of flavor.  The rest is pretty straightforward.  Nice, crispy tortilla chips (homemade or high-quality store-bought are best) add a good bite, the cool, creamy avocado lends this great flavor and brightness to the soup and of course the cotija cheese does what cotija cheese does best-gives the soup a tangy pop of flavor.  Yum yum. Continue reading

Frijoles Charros

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Frijoles Charros roughly translates to cowboy beans.  These yummy beans originated out on ranches as a way for cowboys to make a hearty, warm pot of beans.  Glad someone thought to do this because they are yum-my.  The key ingredient to frijoles charros (aside from the beans) is good old fashioned bacon.  It helps give it a smoky zing.  I have substituted it with vegetarian bacon but the salty smoky flavor is still there.  Add some onions, tomatoes and chilies and you got yourself one filling bowl of beans. Continue reading

Cuban Black Bean Soup

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Quick and easy is always good. Quick, easy and incredibly delicious is just amazing. This soup is so easy to create and the addition of the spices gives it complexity not always associated with quick cooking recipes. This is the perfect soup for a cool crisp day. In less than 30 minutes a warm, robust soup is ready. Serve with some bread or rice and you have a meal on your hands. Continue reading

Peruvian Quinoa Soup

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Quinoa.  What is there to not love about it?  It tastes delicious; it is full of protein, fiber and minerals.  It has a great nutty texture and can be placed in just about any recipe out there.  Sure, in recent years it has seen a surge in popularity but to South Americans quinoa has been a tried and true staple for centuries.  And for good reason. Continue reading

Veggie Caldo

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Caldo is common among many Latin American countries.  It is one of the simplest things to make and one of the most satisfying.  Although most caldos use meat as the main source of protein this caldo uses beans as a base.  It is a rustic soup often identified by its hunks of meat and large pieces of vegetables.  It can be a bit messy to eat when the ingredients do not even fit on the spoon.  I never understood why everything had to be so big so I cut the vegetables a bit smaller, making this soup very easy to eat. Continue reading