Monday, February 18, 2008

Beware: Healthy Recipe Ahead

I have been wanting to get back into healthy eating again. Several years ago, I lost almost 50 pounds on Weight Watchers. An engagement, new job, wedding, and married life have all caught up with me. I am starting to put on some pounds. So! Back to healthy eating and exercising!

One staple of my healthy eating is my vegetable soup. I can't really claim it as mine. It's really the Weight Watchers claim to fame, however, I have made some adaptations. Mine has different veggies in it. I like all kinds of veggies, but rather than spend a fortune on Swiss Chard, I substitute baby spinach. Well, you'll see.

This is a great lunch item. I usually pair it with a salad or even a half a sandwich. You get tons of vitamins and minerals and all that healthy junk. If you are not a veggie lover, I don't suggest you read much further.

This is very easy to make, and can be changed up a million different ways. I have to have tomatoes in virtually everything I eat, so I add a can of diced tomatoes. I use chicken broth in place of the vegetable broth for two reasons: 1) it's cheaper and 2) it has less calories. Who knew?
I will post the WW version and my version.

Have fun with this! Invent your own combination of veggies and spices. And eat a second bowl. After all, it's healthy.

Weight Watchers Vegetable Soup

2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
1 medium sweet red pepper, diced
1 medium celery stalk, diced
2 small zucchini, diced
2 cups Swiss Chard, chopped
2 cups cauliflower, small florets
2 cups broccoli, small florets
2 teaspoons thyme, fresh, chopped
6 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons parsley, fresh, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, optional
1. Put garlic, vegetables, thyme and broth into a large soup pot. Cover and bring to a bowl over high heat; reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes.

2. Stir in parsley; season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice.

Pachey's Version
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, diced
4 cups Normandy vegetable mix, frozen - don't thaw. The Normandy mix has carrots, yellow squash, zucchini, broccoli and cauliflower.
3 cups baby spinach
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, or to taste
6 cups chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspooon crushed red pepper flakes
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes

1. Put all the ingredients in the pot, with the exception of the spinach. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in spinach and cook an additional 2 minutes or until spinach starts to wilt.