I don't know about y'all, but one thing that helps me get through the winter is really good soup. Without soup, wood fires in the fireplace, and hot baths, I honestly don't know if I could make it through.
There's something about hot, rich, hearty soup in the winter that somehow fills that cold place inside like nothing else can. It's comforting, healthy, and warming. It always reminds me of that scene in the movie Ratatouille, where the health inspector tries the ratatouille for the first time and immediately flashes back to his childhood where he comes home, having just wrecked his bicycle. His mother meets him at the front door, and seeing the dejected look on his face, knows exactly what he needs. She gets him to the table, with a bowl of her homemade ratatouille. As he savors the rich flavors of homemade soup, his face softens and everything is made better. If you haven't seen the movie Ratatouille, you really need to. Here is a clip of the "flashback scene" I'm referring to:
Soup somehow invokes the feeling of "home." I'm not sure what I even mean by that, I just know how it feels. It feels good. Soup has healing benefits—to the body and soul. Much like the comfort a mom gives a kid who is sick, or didn't get asked to the dance, or fell off her bike. Even when we are all grown up, soup can still provide that intangible comfort that is difficult to describe.
So, everyone likely has their favorite winter soup and I would never try to replace that. However, I did get introduced to a really tasty, surprising, rich soup that I have found myself making over and over again. Don't get scared by the coconut milk. I do not like coconuts or coconut milk and I adore this soup! Also, I'd love to hear your comments about it, or any tweaks you made to it that turned out to be really awesome.
CREAMY SWEET POTATO SOUP
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 1 inch fresh ginger, grated
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1 tablespoon yellow curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth or water
- 1 can unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, if desired
1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions and cook for 5 minutes until soft. Add the ginger, garlic, and sweet potatoes and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in the curry powder and cayenne and cook another minute.
2. Add the broth. Season with salt. Bring the mix to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender.
3. Stir in the coconut milk and spinach, cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add cilantro if you choose to.
This soup is easy to make, tastes delicious, and is tweak-able depending on what kind of mood you're in. You can serve it over rice. You can get a rotisserie chicken and add in chicken to make a more hearty meal. Or just have a simple, delicious soup to help you get through those cold, rainy days of February.
Boatgirl will be serving this soup at the Outdoor Gear Builders 2019 Get in Gear Fest in Asheville on March 23rd. Come see us for a taste and a look at our Boatgirl Bag Collection!