Root veggies, especially when roasted, are a real comfort food, and this is the kind of soup that’s a real reviver during chilly months. Chinese medicine associates root vegetables with lung health; other peer-reviewed studies have found squash such as the nutty Kabocha squash here are immune boosters filled with gut cleansing fiber. Soups like this just welcome a spice blast, and we’ve obliged this one with cinnamon, allspice, cardamom, nutmeg, ginger, and thyme. Downing a bowl is like lighting your internal fireplace to keep winter’s chill at bay.
3 pounds Kabocha Squash, cut into quarters, seeds removed
2 cups of carrots, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 cup parsnips, cut into 1-inch cubes
5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, divided
½ teaspoon powdered ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 medium onion, diced
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
8 cups MMB
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl combine the olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt with the ginger, cinnamon, allspice, cardamom, chili pepper flakes and nutmeg and stir until well combined.
Toss the carrots and parsnips with half the mixture until evenly coated. Drizzle the remaining spice mixture might be better descriptive over the squash and with a brush or your hand rub the mixture into each piece. Place the seasoned squash on each corner of the prepared baking sheet. Place the carrots and parsnips in the center of the pan in a single layer and roast for 40 minutes, until tender.
While vegetables are roasting heat remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet. Add onions plus a pinch of salt and sauté until golden and translucent, about 6 minutes. Add thyme, garlic, and fresh ginger; sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds more. Remove from heat and set aside.
When the squash has cooled to the touch, scoop the insides into a bowl, along with all of the vegetables. Pour 1/3rd of the broth into a blender; add one-third of the vegetables and blend until smooth, adding more liquid as needed. Transfer to a soup pot over low heat and repeat the process two more times. Stir in any remaining broth, along with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, the lemon juice before serving. Taste, you may need another spritz of lemon juice or a pinch of salt. Garnish with a drizzle of Pomegranate molasses.
Photo Credit: Leo Gong
Reprinted with permission from The Longevity Kitchen: Satisfying Big-Flavor Recipes Featuring the Top 16 Age-Busting Power Foods Copyright © 2013 by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson, Ten Speed Press, a division of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA.