I have to admit – Ramadan in quarantine isn’t that bad after all.
Yes, gatherings with family and friends now happen exclusively online (thank you, Zoom) – but other than that I’ve managed to uphold quite a few of my personal Ramadan “traditions” this year.
Staying up too late. Eating one too many Arabic desserts doused in syrup and topped with pistachios. A full roster of TV shows waiting to be methodically binged night after night. And of course, a seemingly endless amount of time to experiment in the kitchen.
If there’s one traditional mainstay at every Ramadan Iftar table, it is undoubtedly, soup. Followed closely by some sort of salad and samboosa, no doubt – but there’s something sacred about breaking your fast with a piping hot bowl of liquid goodness.
While my favourite soup to have during this time of year is Egyptian red lentil, I do try to switch it up every now and again (insert the age-old “too much of a good thing” adage here.
Enter this vibrant, creamy and downright delectable Green Goddess Soup.
I have to be honest with you guys – this recipe was born out of a want to use up the last of a very weary looking head of broccoli and a smattering of frozen veg. But as any seasoned home chef knows, sometimes the tastiest creations are indeed accidental.
- 1 small onion, roughly chopped
- 1 small potato, diced
- 1 tbsp olive or coconut oil
- 200 grams frozen peas
- 1 cup of broccoli florets
- 1 cup of frozen spinach
- ⅓ cup raw cashews
- 2-3 cloves garlic
- 4 cups vegetable broth or water
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
- To a large pot on medium heat, add the chopped onion and gently saute until translucent and fragrant, stirring frequently.
- Add in the potato, peas, broccoli, spinach and cashews, followed by the vegetable stock or water. Season to taste then bring to a boil.
- Lower the heat and allow to simmer for 15-20 minutes until all the veg is cooked through. Remove from the heat add to a blender. Blend on high until completely smooth then add back into the pot. Adjust water and seasonings based on your personal preference, and crush in the garlic before bringing to the boil one more time.
- Serve piping hot, garnished with olive oil, plant-based cream, fresh herbs or lemon juice as desired.
When it comes to garnishing – I usually make do with a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of olive oil – but if you’re making this for a group feel free to pull out all the stops, food blogger style.
Rosemary and some blanched peas can make even the most basic of broths look fancy with a capital F.
Aesthetics aside, this truly is a fabulous soup to break your fast with. While super simple, the flavours really sing, and the cashews add the perfect amount of creaminess for a silky smooth texture. Not to mention it’s a nutritional powerhouse on account of all the greens, but without too filling (there is after all, a whole iftar meal yet to come).
One of the reasons I adore this soup is that it is so versatile. With peas and spinach as the two “core” ingredients, I’ve had success making it with leftover zucchini, asparagus and even bell peppers (although the latter does impart quite a strong flavour). It’s also incredibly easy to throw together, with less than 10 ingredients and minimal prep required.
Until next time, dear readers!