May 01, 2013

Nourishing Recipes: A Simple Carrot and Orange Soup Recipe

It's the last night of April and by the time you read this it will morning and the first day of May*.  May brings with it the confirmation that we're inching just that little bit closer towards Winter. A time to nurture, build immunity and gather energy in preparation for the colder months ahead.

In May I'm usually wandering in parks and gardens in search of autumnal leaves flashing their colours just once a year; pulling out woollen knits (that aren't scratchy around the neck- a constant battle each year), trackies and hoodies (a must for comfort!), a large collection of scarves and gloves to take up residence, once again, in prime position in the cupboard; and thinking about warming soups and stews and the nights spent indoors in cinema's and bookstores sipping on that late night cup of hot chocolate with friends. This year I'm not so sure how much of this I'll actually be doing as I've moved and it's more tropical and so far there's been no orange or red leaves in sight. I'll have to wait and see what Autumn and Winter patterns emerge.

Two things I am certain about in May though are birthday celebrations - my sisters, and numerous other Gemini friends  and good times in the kitchen cooking and baking warming foods like soups, stews and crumbles.

Autumn is a favourite season of many a food lover and with it's abundance of fresh produce I tend to agree. My love affair with pumpkin is well under way. Other Autumn favourites starting to appear I'm keen to fill my basket with are carrots, onions, fennel, sweet potato for soups and apples, pears, rhubarbs and lemons for desserts.

I made this warming soup a little while ago when I had an abundance of carrots. It's perfectly matched to the season - warm, nourishing and your digestion. If you can source organic vegetables.. do it. Once you try a really good organic pumpkin you'll never want to eat anything else. I hope you enjoy x

What little comforts keep you cosy as the weather turns cold? And your favourite Autumn foods?

Carrot and Orange Soup Recipe

5 carrots
1/4 pumpkin
1/4 brown onion
2 garlic cloves
2 inch piece of ginger
2 tsp ground coriander
1 orange
1 tbsp coconut oil, or extra virgin olive oil
4.5 cups of water or stock
fresh coriander
optional: goat's yoghurt

Rinse and lightly scrub carrots. Roughly chop carrots into smallish pieces. But not too small 2-3 inches. Rinse and lightly scrub pumpkin, keeping the skin intact (only if organic otherwise discard skin). Roughly chop into 2-3 inch size pieces. Dice onion and garlic.  Grate ginger.

Heat oil on medium heat in a large pot. Add onion, garlic, ginger, coriander, carrots and pumpkins. Sweat* on medium temperature with lid on until vegetables start to soften and glisten around edges, about 10 minutes. Add 4.5 cups of water, bring to the boil and simmer gently until vegetables are really soft - 20-25 minutes. Remove and add juice of orange. Blend to desired consistency. Serve in a well loved soup bowl with coriander and yoghurt if desired.

Serves 2

*Kitchen note: How to sweat vegetables.

Sweating vegetables is a great technique for drawing out the flavours of vegetables in soups and sauces. All you do is chop vegetables into evenly sized pieces (no need to be pedantic about the size here!), heat a little oil over medium heat and add vegetables for about 10 minutes, or until they soften and start to glisten. You don't want to brown the vegetables.

*Inspiration: Rebecca from Pomegranate and Seeds wrote a beautiful post april ends which inspired me to think about the end of one month and the beginning of another.


  1. The blue ramekin!

  2. What a lovely recipe Natalie. And your words paint such a pretty picture. Coming from the northern hemisphere, it doesn't feel like a proper autumn - not with these glorious sunny days and warm temperatures. Having said that, I'd take this autumn any day. Warm days and chilly nights are just perfect. Now if I can just find some more liquid ambers to gaze at... x

  3. Yummmm how beautiful...

  4. This sounds so lovely! I will have to try this out. I love the napkin too. It makes the picture perfect.


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