Warming Winter Soups

Who doesn’t enjoy sitting near the fireplace on a winter’s evening savouring a fragrant bowl of delicious soup? There is much evidence to show that our bodies benefit greatly from eating foods that are not only in season, but also grow in the area in which we live. At this time of year, enjoy hearty soups and breads as well as roasted meats, vegetables, fresh squeezed apple juice and pumpkin pie (made from squash of course)! Here are a couple of soup recipes to try…


Squash OR Sweet Potato Soup


3 large yams, sweet potatoes OR

  1 large butternut, queensland blue or 2 medium acorn squash

2 garlic bulbs

4 tomatoes

2 red peppers

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 medium yellow onion, diced

2 tsp salt

3 garlic cloves

2 tbsp minced sage (dried and/or powdered works just fine too)

2 tbsp minced oregano (dried is fine if fresh is not readily available. Great time to pull out those dried herbs from the summer)

2 tsp coriander seeds (toasted and ground) 

TIP: If you grow Cilantro in your garden let some of it go to seed and dry out the pods. Cilantro becomes Coriander in its dried form!

1 tsp ancho chile powder

2 tsp chipotle puree (or less for a more mellow soup)

1 tbsp maple syrup

juice of 1 lime

salt and pepper to taste


1. Pre-heat oven to 375. Using a fork, poke a few holes in each yam (or slice squash in half and place cut side up on roasting pan). Halve and seed peppers. We place the yams/squash, peppers, tomatoes and garlic on a baking tray, drizzle with veg. oil and roast all together. As the yams/squash take about 1/2 hr longer than the peppers and tomatoes, you will have to remove them when the skiins begin to puff and brown. Transfer to a bowl and cover for about 10 minutes – this makes it easier to peel off the skins.

2. Heat vegetable oil in large soup pot. Add onions and saute until translucent. Add garlic, spices and herbs and cook until the garlic is golden. Stir in the peeled, roasted vegetables, the stock and the chipotle chiles. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Puree the soup until smooth. Whisk in the maple syrup, lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serving suggestion: we like to swirl a little plain yogurt into the soup before serving with some finely cut cilantro and an extra squeeze of lime. Yum!


Recipe and photo from: www.safefarmer.com

Roasted Beet Borscht 


olive oil, for cooking

2 onions, chopped

3-4 garlic cloves, crushed

2 celery stalks, chopped (use the leaves, too)

1 carrot, chopped

1 leek, chopped

1/2 head cabbage, shredded

1 L beef or chicken stock

3-4 beets, roasted (and peeled if need be)

1-2 Tbsp. red wine or balsamic vinegar, or to taste (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste

Sour cream, for serving


In a large pot, heat a drizzle of oil over medium-high heat. Saute the onions for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic, celery, carrot, leek and cabbage and cook for about 10 minutes, until everything is soft and starting to turn golden.

Add the stock and 2-4 cups of water. Grate the beets using the coarse side of a box grater and add that too. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes, until all the vegetables are tender and the broth has thickened slightly. Add the vinegar and salt and pepper to taste and serve hot, with a big dollop of sour cream on top. Serves 6.

Recipe and photo from: www.dinnerwithjulie.com