This is weird. It’s Fall right? It isn’t exactly Fall here in Seattle yet. And, it hasn’t really rained since the end of June.
Don’t get me wrong – I AM NOT in any way shape or form complaining. I love it. I just don’t know what to expect next.
Could it possibly stay like this? Even for just a couple more weeks? If so, I will gladly take it.
The realist in me says not to get my hopes up so I started getting back into the swing of “Fall things” anyway, like making a pot of soup every week and planning casseroles, roast chicken and dinners that most likely require some oven time. Or at least way more oven time than I was generally comfortable with in the summer.
Last week I made that amazing Vegetarian Hot & Sour soup (more than a couple times) but this week I didn’t have time to pick up the ingredients for the soup I had in mind so I took inventory and made this rustic vegan soup up based on what I had in my fridge and pantry.
I am really happy with it – it’s not only super tasty but easy to make, really satisfying and a huge portion (2 cups) is only 4 Points Plus.
- I used Imagine No-Chicken Broth as the base. I discuss it a bit more in my Vegetarian Hot & Sour Soup recipe.
- If you need a quick and easy way to stem Kale, click here for a quick step-by-step.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
- 3 medium carrots, cut into ½” half moons or rounds depending on thickness
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt plus 1.5 teaspoons
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more to taste
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 12 to 15 sprigs parsley
- 1 bay leaf
- 8 cups broth (see NOTES)
- 4 cups water
- ¾ cup whole wheat orzo
- 1.5 cups red beans (or 1 15-ounce can rinsed and drained)
- 1 head Kale, stemmed and cut into bite sized pieces
- 6 ounces organic baby spinach
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ⅛ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
- ½ lemon, juiced
- Trim ends of garlic and place in bowl of food processor. Process until finely chopped. Peel and quarter onion and place in food processor with garlic. Pulse until finely chopped.
- Clean and peel carrots. If thin, cut into ½” rounds. If carrots are thick, cut in half lengthwise and slice into ½” half-moons.
- Wrap parsley and bay leaf in cheesecloth and tie with string or silicone band.
- If using canned beans, rinse and drain. Measure spices and orzo. Clean kale, remove stems (see NOTES) and cut into thin strips. Cut strips into thirds so that you have bite-sized pieces. Clean spinach and set aside along with kale.
- Heat a soup pot over medium high heat. Add olive oil. Once hot, add chopped garlic and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally 5 to 7 minutes until soft.
- Add carrots, 1 tablespoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon thyme and parsley/bay leaf bundle. Cook another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add broth and water and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, remove parsley and bay leaf packet. Then toss in orzo. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes.
- Lower heat to medium and add beans, kale and spinach. Cook over medium heat for an additional 10 minutes.
- Adjust salt and pepper if necessary. Add coriander, crushed red pepper flakes and lemon juice. Serve and Enjoy!