Carrot, Celeriac and Blood Orange Soup with Gentle North African Spices
Carrot, Celeriac and Blood Orange Soup is not only deliciously comforting and uplifting, but with a little help from your friendly spice cupboard, it will warm the cockles of your heart and look after your body too!
Researching and writing the Herbs and Spices Chapter for ‘Once Upon a Cook – Food Wisdom, Better Living’ got my creative juices flowing, so when my weekly seasonal fruit and veggie order arrived from Riverford Organic Farmers, I immediately put the contents to good use.
It’s hard to think of foods any more traditional than herbs & spices; they’re amongst the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet – straight from Nature’s healing pharmacy, these culinary alchemists are critical elements of flavour and good health.
Based on nutritious, healing and restorative bone broth (or mineral broth for a vegetarian/vegan version) this soup is spiced with coriander, cumin, cinnamon, turmeric and black pepper – all of which are not only culinary giants, but have evidence-based gravitas as big hitters for healing on many levels; used together they pack a mighty powerful band as nutritional brothers.
Just check these spice credentials:
Coriander seed is known for soothing stomach and digestive ailments and we now have positive research outcomes for IBS, spasms, bloating, chronic constipation; inflammatory skin conditions; cholesterol regulation; diabetes; yeast infections;lead poisoning; and liver disease (particularly non-alcoholic fatty liver disease – NAFLD). It’s also effective in treating insomnia – where it has been identified as a powerful sedative and muscle relaxant (I add coriander to my Golden Milk at bedtime – delicious!)
Cinnamon is famed for its ability to control blood sugar – making it of great value to those with insulin resistance, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. It also has a track record for helping regulate high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and yeast infections.
Diabetes researchers have shown cumin to be equal to anti-diabetes drugs in its ability to reduce high cholesterol, triglycerides and to delay cataract development – a common risk for those with diabetes.
Once disparaged as ‘a poor man’s saffron’, turmeric turns out to be India’s gold! A daily staple in Indian homes for centuries, science is showing us repeatedly that turmeric’s active ingredient curcumin is able to protect and improve our health on just about every level. Traditional medicines have lauded turmeric with scores of healing actions and now, many thousands of studies have provided evidence that the combination of curcumin’s powerful anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory abilities is as, if not more effective than pharmaceutical drugs – with no side effects! It’s promise for cancer, pollutants and toxins, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, bowel disease, skin conditions, cardiovascular disease and more… is exciting!
Black pepper corns
Rich in curative piperine, Indian black pepper is considered superior to other varieties. Used as curative for many thousands of years by ancient Ayurveda, research has shown us that piperine powerfully stimulates metabolism: kick-starting digestion, speeding up food transit time through the bowel, improving the metabolism of medications, preventing and treating cancers, easing arthritis, improving brain function, helping hypertension and cardiovascular disease.
Most commercially grown and supermarket sourced herbs and spices don’t offer the above health benefits; pesticides, fertilisers and other chemicals are used to support their growth and irradiation increases their self-life. You’ll find sources for fresh organic herbs and spices online.
Learn more about herbs and spices
To learn how ‘no-fad’, traditional foods, culinary and medicinal herbs and spices will hugely benefit your health, read:
Once Upon a Cook – Food Wisdom, Better Living: The Wisdom and Science of Traditional Foods, Forgotten Skills and Nourishing Recipes
At home, we love this soup with a dollop of home made yoghurt and a chunk of home-made sourdough bread (thickly buttered, of course) or a crispy, salty baked potato topped with chive labneh, or cultured cream and a lemon-dressed green salad on the side. Perfecto!
Pasture-raised meats, dairy, eggs and wild caught fish have a vastly superior nutritional profile, as do organic, or cleanly grown grains, fruits and vegetables. Please try to source your food as well as you are able.
It goes without saying that the vegetables in this recipe must be organic or grown without the use of pesticides. There can be no compromises here!