1 sweet onion (chopped)
3 stalks of celery (chopped)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 carrot (chopped)
5 cups of broccoli (chopped, including stalks)
6 cups of water or vegetable stock
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp -2 tsp sea salt
1 cup cashews
1 cup of soaked split peas or 1 can green lentils (drained and rinsed)
2 cups baby spinach (packed)
1/4 – 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (optional)
Salt, pepper & nutritional yeast to taste
What you do:
1. Place oil, chopped onion and celery into a large pot and heat gently to soften. Add carrot and broccoli. Pour in water or stock, add the
dried basil and sea salt. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover the pot and reduce to a simmer. Let simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until broccoli is tender.
2. Meanwhile, in a blender, create your cashew cream by blending together 1 cup of cashews with 1 cup water. (If you alter the serving size, just keep the cashew to water ratio 1:1.) If you don’t have a high-end blender you’ll want to soak your cashews for about 4hrs. You don’t want lumps in your cashew cream. If soaking cashews, use less water when making the cream. Pour the cashew cream and nutritional yeast in with your veggies and stir. Now add your green lentils or split peas and stir again.
3. Place spinach in the bottom of the blender. Then carefully transfer soup to the blender and blend to a puree. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with salt, pepper & nutritional yeast.
Nutritional yeast is what gives you the ‘cheesy’ flavor so add more if you want a Cream of Broccoli and Cheese Soup. (Nutritional yeast is a good source of protein, zinc, selenium and vitamin B’s – particularly Vit B12 – which is very important if you are vegetarian or vegan).
If using dried lentils or split peas, soak overnight and gently boil prior to use to remove any of the phytic acids from the legumes. (This is the bubbly stuff that you’ll see floating on the top – and what makes difficult digestion for some causing gas and bloating). I prefer using dried legumes to cut back on high salt from canned foods.