Happy cows’ French onion soup

Fr.OnionSoup

Makes 3 servings

French onion soup… who doesn’t love this gooey, cheesey, savoury bowl of deliciousness?

Cows and cardiologists, that’s who. The original recipe is made with beef broth, cheese and butter.

My vegan version has all the flavour, heartiness and cheesy yum of the original recipe AND it keeps our bovine pals and your arteries happy.

While I’m not a big fan of packaged foods, I have to give a big shout out to Daiya for making an excellent product that tastes and acts like cheese. In this recipe, the shredded Daiya mozzarella and smoked Gouda flavoured products even give the broth the delightful creaminess I loved in the original recipe.

Big bonus – in just 45 minutes you will go from a bag of onions to a bowl of this soup. Half that time involves ignoring the soup pot while it simmers. It doesn’t get much easier!

Ingredients

4 cups vegetable broth

2 large onions, peeled, quartered and cut into thin slices.

2 cloves garlic minced

½ tsp sugar (even brown sugar is fine)

1 ½ Tbsp vegan margarine

1 bay leaf

1 sprig thyme or ½ tsp dried thyme

1 Tbsp sherry (optional)

1 Tbsp A-1 Sauce (a/k/a brown sauce)

1 Tbsp soya sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

3 slices stale bread (I use Ezekiel bread)

1 – 1 ½ cups shredded Daiya cheese or other vegan cheese that melts when heated

Directions

In a large pot, melt the margarine. Add the onions, garlic and sugar and sauté the onions for about 10 minutes until they start turning golden. Add all the other ingredients except the bread and Daiya cheese and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let simmer for 25 minutes. Fish out the bay leaf and the twig of thyme, if using.

Ladle the soup into three ovenproof bowls. Add a slice of bread to each bowl and sprinkle with a third of the shredded Daiya. Place the bowls in the oven and broil until the cheese is melted and turning golden.

Serve up and enjoy!

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Beans and greens – northern soul food

beansandgreens

Leafy greens – think kale, spinach, lettuces, chard, dandelion and collard greens – are touted as a superfood. They’re something I consciously have to remember to work into my diet, and when I’m do I always wonder why I don’t eat more. They’re delicious!

Here is an easy, fast, tasty and comforting cold weather dish I refer to simply as beans and greens.

Ingredients

10 oz of a sturdy pasta like farfalle, penne or rotini

2 cups vegetable broth

15 oz can white beans (or any kind of bean you like). That’s about 1 ½ cups of cooked beans. Drain and rinse if you’re using canned beans.

3-4 cloves garlic minced

1 Tbsp olive oil

A pinch of red pepper flakes

¼ cup almond butter

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

3 cups of raw greens chopped into bite-sized pieces. In this photo, I’ve used collard greens.

Salt and pepper to taste (about 1 teaspoon sea salt and ¼ teaspoon ground pepper)

Directions

Cook the pasta according to package instructions, drain and place in a large bowl.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large pot. Saute the garlic and pepper flakes until the garlic is golden. Add the broth, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and almond butter and heat through stirring until the almond butter melts into the broth. Add the beans and greens and stir together until the greens wilt a bit. Pour the beans and greens mixture into the bowl with the pasta and toss together to incorporate. This makes 4 large servings.

This dish is great served with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast and tastes even better the next day.