Soup of the Month - February

Updated: Feb 10

We at Embodied Empowerment are strong believers in the power of nourishment through food. Food is a wonderful way to connect to nature, ourselves and each other. In fact whenever our team meets up or we hold our ‘Practitioner meet-ups’ we always share food together.


“I’ve always been a strong believer in ‘Soup Therapy’ ,'' explains Sophie co-founder of Embodied Empowerment. “Whenever I feel stressed, overwhelmed, emotional or just a bit meh, I make soup! Taking the time to choose the right recipe to suit my mood, carefully selecting the stars of the show - my chosen vegetables! Followed by the wonderfully grounding and simple act of chopping and stirring when cooking. Finally finishing with being able to nourish myself from the inside, by eating up a delicious soup I took the time to create all for me… and any lucky pals I chose to share it with!”


Enjoy our monthly Blog Post - Soup of The Month where we share a new seasonal, nourishing soup recipe every month.

Here’s this month's recipe from our resident Chef Nicoletta Tavella - La Cucina del Sole.

This is the perfect detox soup.


Zimin (Ligurian chickpea and chard soup)

It originates from Liguria, Italy, and it’s quite easy to make. It’s one of my family recipes and I love to prepare it with rainbow chard. Plain chard and wild spinach are great too!

It is enriched with a handful of porcini mushrooms which you can buy in dried form, soaking them in hot water for 10 minutes before adding. They will enhance the flavour of the soup and give it extra healing properties thanks to their high beta glucans content, which helps fight inflammation, strengthens the immune system and boosts heart health.

Chard contains plenty of minerals (calcium, iron and magnesium) and helps us keep strong, healthy bones.

TIPS:

Use the soaking water of the porcini for extra taste but avoid pouring it all in the soup till the last drop since it might contain some dirt and sand deposits.

The soup can be made completely vegan (and lighter, if you’re detoxing) by frying the croutons in extra virgin olive oil instead of butter. You can, of course, skip the croutons completely and add some cooked rice, quinoa or millet instead to make it also gluten-free.

Go heavy on the parsley: it’s great for detoxing the liver and contains plenty of iron and vitamin C!

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Serves 4

SOUP:

1 big onion, peeled

3-4 cloves of garlic, peeled

6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

4 bay leaves

2 sprigs of rosemary

500 gr. rainbow or plain chard (or wild spinach)

400 gr. cooked chickpeas

10 gr. of dried porcini mushrooms

3 l. of vegetable stock

black pepper

FOR GARNISHING: 4 slices of bread

2 tablespoons of butter or 2-3 tablespoons of e.v. olive oil

a bunch of flat-leaf parsley

CROUTONS:

Cut the bread in square or rectangular chunks and fry them in the melted butter or in olive oil until golden and crunchy. Set aside for later.


SOUP:

Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in warm water for about 10 minutes and then cut them in medium-sized pieces.

Peel the onion and the garlic cloves and chop them quite coarsely.

Finely chop the rosemary leaves and gently fry them in 6 tablespoons of olive oil together with the onion and the garlic.

Once the onion has turned glazy, add the coarsely chopped chard stems (the leaves will be added later) and let them soften up a bit.


Add the chopped chard leaves and the mushrooms and leave to cook for a few minutes.


Add the drained chickpeas, the bay leaves, the porcini soaking water and the stock.


Cook the soup for about 30 minutes and serve garnished with the croutons, some ground black pepper and abundant finely chopped parsley.


Soup of the month brought to you by our resident chef

Nicoletta Tavella - La Cucina del Sole Italian cooking school - Food Writing & Recipe Development - Food & Wine consultancy - Import/sales organic olive oil Warmondstraat 180, 1058 LC Amsterdam, The Netherlands Tel. (00 31) 20 789 1779 or (00 31) 6 1715 4707

Websites: www.cucinadelsole.nl (NL/EN) www.nicolettatavella.com (EN)

Insatgram: nicolettacooks

Facebook: La Cucina del Sole

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