Recently I began to order a bi-weekly organic produce box, with many of the fruits and veggies from local farmers. I think it’s really important to support local farmers, especially when they are growing organically. Organic foods are free of dangerous pesticides and man-made chemicals. This is critical to good health. Why bother trying so hard to eat vegetables if you are going to purchase ones that are laden with toxic chemicals? That defeats the whole purpose of eating healthy.
The fun part of getting the produce box is that there are always new foods to try. This forces me out of my routine and encourages me to be creative. In this week’s box, there was a type of mushroom with which I was unfamiliar – Beech mushrooms. They are small and skinny, and they grow together in a cluster, like this:
(Thank you, Wikipedia for sharing this photo.)
If you don’t happen to have any Beech mushrooms, no problem. Just substitute the type you have available locally. All mushrooms are a fantastic source of selenium, which we need to regulate our stress levels and our immune system, as well as several B vitamins, which we need for energy and mood stabilization. And what better way to get all these nutrients during the chilly winter season than with a velvety-rich bowl of soup?
Slow-Roasted Garlic & Mushroom Soup
(Makes four 1-cup servings)
1 lb. Beech mushrooms (or other mushroom of your choice)
1 large yellow or white onion
1 head of garlic
1 medium Russet potato
¼ c. refined coconut oil or other healthy oil
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 c. water
¼ c. fresh sage
¼ tsp. dried thyme
¼ tsp. celery seed
salt and pepper to taste
Slice peeled onion into thirds.
Slice the tips off of the unpeeled head of garlic.
Chop the unpeeled potato into large chunks.
Toss onion, garlic, and potato with oil. Transfer to a baking sheet, reserving any leftover oil.
Slow roast at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes.
Coat mushrooms with remaining oil.
Add mushrooms to the baking sheet. Continue roasting all vegetables for another 15 minutes.
Reserve 1/3 of the mushrooms.
Let roasted veggies cool for 5 minutes.
Carefully remove skins from garlic – they should fall off easily. Alternately, you can just squeeze the garlic right out of the skins and into a blender. Place all other ingredients into the blender with the garlic. Blend until puréed.
Place all ingredients into a pot. Simmer until heated through.