I don’t really want to rush time along, but this year winter has rudely muscled its way into spring and I’m aching for sunshine and warm temperatures. This see-sawing act (hot…cold…hot…cold) is getting tiresome.
Because of the lingering chilliness, my stomach is still craving comforting stews and soups. This one is particularly satisfying – very loosely based on an Olive Garden soup. I use homemade sweet potato gnocchi – you can get my recipe here. Or, use store-bought, if you like. Just make sure they’re vegan. For a creamy version, puree the beans before adding them to the soup.
I suggest adding Better Than Bouillon Vegetarian No Chicken broth concentrate to this soup even though it contains oil and sugar. The quantity used here, however, is very small so I don’t obsess over it. Of course, you could skip it and add flavor with miso paste, tamari or liquid aminos, if you prefer.
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms + 1 cup boiling water
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 2 large stalks celery, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 vegan chicken sausages (such as Field Roast), sliced into rounds
- 5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1-2 tsp. Better Than Bouillon No Chicken or 1-2 Tbsp. Bragg Liquid Aminos
- 1 15-ounce can Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
- 4 cups fresh greens (kale, chard, spinach), chopped
- 2 cups sweet potato gnocchi*, cooked and drained
- Place the dried mushrooms in a small bowl and pour the 1 cup of boiling water over them. Stir and let them soak while you prepare the soup.
- In a large pot, sauté the onions, carrots and celery in a splash of water or vegetable broth for 5-6 minutes. Stir in the garlic, nutritional yeast, thyme, black pepper and bay leaf. Add more water or broth to prevent the veggies from sticking, and cook for another minute or so.
- Meanwhile, drain the dried mushrooms, reserving the soaking liquid, and roughly chop them. Set aside.
- Add the 5 cups broth to the pot and bring to a boil. Stir in the Better Than Bouillon (or liquid aminos), the beans, and the chopped mushrooms. Turn down the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, or until veggies are very tender. Stir in the greens and gnocchi and cook until the greens are tender. Taste and adjust seasonings. Discard the bay leaf and divide soup among four big bowls.
- *Check out my easy, oil-free recipe for Sweet Potato Gnocchi: http://www.anunrefinedvegan.com/2013/04/04/sweet-potato-gnocchi/