Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Vegan Winter Veggie Chowder

A long time ago, when I was in middle school I think, I decided to be vegetarian for the summer.   I remember being at the doctors office one day for my sister and sitting in the waiting room forEVER.  Luckily there was a ton of magazines.  One, and now I can't remember which one, had a great vegetarian recipe for a Winter Vegetable Chowder.  As I read over the recipe I knew I had to try it! So I typed out the whole recipe on my mom's little... I don't know what to call it... "personal-organizer-mini-laptop-looking-thing"?? yeah, that works I guess. 

Anyway, took the recipe home, we got all of the ingredients and I made it... it was a lot of work but it was DELICIOUS!  I found the recipe a few years ago and have recently made the chowder again only this time, I veganized it... which wasn't hard.  I also want to add that I don't really chop/cut anything to an exact size, I just make it small enough that the pieces can fit in my mouth! (The first time I made it we tried to be exact with the sizes recommended in the magazines recipe... but it took FOREVER to make everything so little.  Save yourself some struggle and don't worry about the size.  Also add more potatoes or squash if you want!  It "beefs" up the soup a bit.. Hahaha "beefs" on a vegan food blog! (haha I crack myself up!)

6 med leeks
2 TBS olive oil
4 med stalks celery, chopped
3 med parsnips, peeled and chopped
2 med red potatoes, chopped
1 (2 lb) butternut squash, peeled and chopped
32 oz vegetable broth
2 cups water
½ tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
¾ tsp pepper
1 cup mimicreme or unsweetened non dairy creamer (try So Delicious original)

Cut off roots and trim dark-green tops from leeks. Discard any tough outer leaves. Cut each leek lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide slices. Rinse leeks in large bowl of cold water; swish to remove sand. With hands, transfer leeks to colander, leaving sand in bottom of bowl. Repeat rinsing and draining, several times, until all sand is removed. Drain well.

In 6-quart saucepot, heat oil on medium-high until hot. Add leeks, celery, and parsnips, and cook 10 to 12 minutes or until all vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.

Add potatoes, squash, broth, water, thyme, salt, and pepper; heat to boiling on medium-high. Cover; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer about 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in the non-dairy cream and heat through, about 13 minutes. Spoon half of soup into bowl and garnish with thyme sprig; then spoon remaining into freezer-safe containers and keep for a cold day!


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