Friday, March 22, 2013

Calendula Carrot Soup

4 tablespoons butter
1 cup sweet Vidalia onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 cup Granny Smith apple, chopped
1/2 cup raw peanuts, chopped in food processor
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cumin
2 pounds carrots, chopped
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoon dried calendula petals

In a large stockpot, melt butter over medium low heat. Add onion and garlic, sauté until they turn translucent. Add apple and peanuts, cinnamon, nutmeg and cumin. Continue to cook for 3 minutes. Add carrots and cook for 5 minutes over a low heat, stirring intermittently. Pour in stock, cover
and allow to simmer for 20 minutes. Add calendula and simmer for 5 more minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly before pouring into a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. Return to pot and stir in coconut milk. Cook over a medium low heat for 5 minutes. Do not let it come to a boil. Serves 4 - 6.

Calendula is a mildly bitter herb and therefore good for the liver. The flowers are medicinal and can be used as a spice to add color and a subtle, yet distinctive flavor reminiscent of saffron. Sometimes called poor man's saffron, or Egyptian saffron, it is similarly employed as a yellow dye for fabrics, cheese and cosmetics. Learn more in my book, Wisdom of the Plant Devas: Herbal Medicine for a New Earth.

You can also learn more in my work-at-your-own pace class, Love Your Liver: Spring and the Wood Element.