Here's another recipe in my Winter Healthy Soup Series... this borscht contains no tomatoes or potatoes, which are from the Solanaceae family. Commonly known as nightshades, this family of plants can cause inflammation in some people. If you have rheumatoid arthritis, stay clear of the whole nightshade family which includes tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, potatoes, tobacco, & goji berries. Mercifully, sweet potatoes are not nightshades and can be eaten.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Yield: 6-8 servings
1 lb grass fed free range beef, stew meat with good marbling
1 Tbsp salt
2 large or 3 medium beets, cut into small cubes
5 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp sugar
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, cut into small cubes
2 large sweet potatoes, cut into small cubes
1/2 head of cabbage, chopped roughly
2 Tbsp umeboshi plum paste
2 bay leaves
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
4 Tbsp chopped fresh dill
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup plain full fat greek yogurt
Cube meat and sear in a pan with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Place in a large soup pot with 10 cups cold water and 1 Tbsp salt and bay leaves. Bring to a low boil and remove foam that rises to the top. Lower heat and simmer for 2 hours or more until meat is tender.
Cube the beets, carrots, and sweet potatoes and sauté in olive oil in a large cast iron pan. Add ½ cup of the beef broth from the soup pot, apple cider vinegar, sugar, and umeboshi paste. Set aside. Using the same pan, sauté cabbage, onions, and garlic on low heat with a little more olive oil until the cabbage is softened.
After the stew meat has been slow cooking for about 2 hours, add the root vegetables, onions, garlic, and cabbage to the pot. Simmer for another 15-20 minutes until the roots are tender. Salt & pepper to taste. Remove from heat and add dill and parsley. Stir well. Serve in bowls topped with a dollop of greek yogurt and dill sprigs.
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Joy’s Dairy-Free Holiday Chai Tea Recipe
Great to sip with cookies or just to warm up on cold winter nights!
What you will need:
3 cinnamon sticks
20 whole cardamom pods, crushed
20 whole cloves
½ tsp whole black peppercorns
2 inch piece of fresh ginger
4 organic oolong tea bags
4 cups coconut milk beverage (found in the refrigerator section of your health food store)
4 Tbs brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
In a medium sized pot add cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods (lightly crushed), cloves, peppercorns, and the peeled piece of fresh ginger (sliced thinly) along with 4 cups water. Boil covered for 5 minutes stirring occasionally, and then lower to a simmer for another 10 minutes to steep and release the flavor of the spices.
Next, bring the pot back to a boil and add the 4 tea bags. Simmer for 5 more minutes and then shut off the heat. Finally add 4 cups of dairy-free coconut milk and vanilla extract. Sweeten with brown sugar, strain, and serve hot. If the chai doesn’t seem strong enough, simply simmer a bit longer.
Cinnamon: warming, good for blood circulation, joint pain, vitality
Cardamom: good for warming digestion
Cloves: good for upset stomach
Pepper: warms and calms abdominal cramps
Ginger: used for nausea and indigestion
Coconut Milk: high in medium chain fatty acids, good for the skin, brain, immune system, etc.
Oolong tea: contains antioxidants
Enjoy! And let me know how you like it.
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Joy’s Butternut Squash Roasted Garlic and Leek Soup
1 large butternut squash, chopped into cubes
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoon olive oil...
4 large leeks, white and tender green parts, coarsely chopped
1 bulb of garlic
7 fresh thyme sprigs
4 cups organic free range chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white cooking wine
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 cup plain full fat Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons chopped chives
Preheat the oven to 350°. Place the cubed squash (I leave the skin on) in a covered baking dish with a drizzle of olive oil & some salt & pepper and place in the center of the oven. Pop out all the garlic cloves from the bulb and place in a small bake-proof dish. Cover with a couple tablespoons of olive oil and stir to coat. Place next to the squash in the center shelf of the oven. Bake for 40-50 minutes until soft when poked with a knife (stirring half way through). The garlic is done when it is slightly toasty brown on the outside and soft in the middle.
For an extra treat: I like to mix the separated squash seeds with a little olive oil & salt, lay them flat on a baking sheet & add to the oven for about 10-15 minutes until lightly golden, then remove and snack on while cooking
Remove outer leaves from the leeks and slice in half lengthwise. Soak in cold water and clean between leaves to remove all grit. Trim off the root ends and dark green tops. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks to the pan and arrange cut side down in a single layer and add thyme sprigs. Cook until softened and light golden, about 4 minutes. Turn the leeks and cook on the other side until softened, moving them around gently with a spatula to separate. Season them with salt and pepper. Turn the leeks again and peel off any papery outer layers and discard. Add ½ cup chicken stock and ½ cup white wine, bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer covered for another couple of minutes. When the leeks are tender and translucent looking, they are done. Set them aside and chop them coarsely once they are cool enough to handle. Scrape off the thyme leaves from the tough stems and set aside to add to the soup pot.
In a large pot add baked squash, finished leeks (chopped up), thyme, roasted garlic cloves, and the rest of the chicken stock. Simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes. Use an immersion blender to blend all the ingredients into a smooth consistency. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot with a dollop of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of chopped chives.
Let me know how you like it!