When it comes to choosing our favorite nourishing comfort foods, soup is at the top of our list. It’s a whole meal in one pot, not to mention a great way to use up any leftover meat and vegetables lingering in your refrigerator. Soup always sounds especially good when summer turns to fall, but there are plenty of reasons to stop thinking about soup simply as a cold-weather meal and to start thinking about it as the perfect Primal meal any day of the year.
Let’s begin by clarifying what the ideal Primal soup is not. It is not canned nor is it over-salted to make up for a wimpy, watery broth. It is not weighed down by bland potatoes or pasta or filled with limp, overcooked vegetables and itsy-bitsy pieces of unrecognizable meat. The pot of soup on our stove is filled with hearty chunks of protein simmering in a broth richly flavored by bone marrow, collagen and brightly colored vegetables. With a little planning ahead, the perfect Primal soup can be simmering in your kitchen, too, any day of the week and any time of year.
This week’s soup recipe comes from a military man who prefers to keep his real identity undercover. He did, however, decide to declassify his Chicken and Shrimp Soup recipe for the Primal Blueprint Cookbook Challenge, and we’re glad he did. The soup follows one of our favorite soup-making methods, which is throwing a bunch of healthy stuff in a pot and letting it simmer to deliciousness. All that’s required on your part is a little chopping and stirring. Yes, there are a lot of ingredients, but if you scan the list you’re likely to find that you already have many of them on hand.
Just when you think you’ve had every type of soup out there, something new comes along. Like this recipe for Kombu Egg Soup sent in by Aaron Blaisdell for the Primal Cookbook Challenge.
As Aaron so rightly reminded us, “sea vegetables are often an overlooked component of our ancestral diet, even among us primal types.”
Kombu Egg Soup is incredibly nourishing and while the flavor of sea vegetables might be an acquired taste, in this soup you’ll find it to be fairly mild. But what are sea vegetables, exactly? We’ve featured this food group (otherwise known as algae) as Smart Fuel before, but the quick version is this: sea vegetables are in most cases some version of seaweed, whether it be nori (the dried seaweed that sushi is wrapped in) or something like kombu.
Chowder is different things to different people. Some insist that the word “clam” come before it or that potatoes be involved, some like a creamy broth (New England-style) and some like a broth flavored with tomatoes (Manhattan-style). We prefer the broad definition found in most culinary dictionaries that declares chowder to be “any thick soup containing chunks of food.”
The Arctic Char (or Wild Salmon) Chowder recipe sent in by Mike Cheliak for the Primal Blueprint Cookbook Challenge meets this definition and will undoubtedly unite both lovers of creamy broths and tomato based broths. Filled with generous chunks of fish and tomatoes, it is chowder that will satisfy your hunger and your need for Omega 3s and powerful antioxidants like lycopene. The bit of cream added at the end provides a delicious, rich texture but is entirely optional, as the chowder is just as flavorful without it.
Whether you live in an area being hit by a winter cold snap or you’re lucky enough to be basking in a balmy climate, there is comfort to be found in a bowl of soup. A sip of steaming soup will warm and nourish you to your core, but there’s also great comfort found in the fact that you can’t screw up soup too badly. Gather ingredients in one pot, simmer, and voila, you’ve got soup.
There is however, a bit of an art to selecting just the right ingredients and we think Danielle Thalman has done just that with her Watercress Bacon Soup. Our first soup entry for the Primal Blueprint Cookbook Contest strikes just the right balance of home cooked comfort food (there’s bacon in it!) and intriguing, complex flavor from a green called watercress.
Is there anything more comforting on a chilly autumn evening than a bowl of soup? It warms the body and the soul, especially when the broth is infused with aromatic, slightly spicy ginger. Ginger has long been thought to be a natural immune booster. With flu season on the horizon, homemade soup with ginger broth is exactly what your body needs. Health benefits aside, an even better reason to make Ginger Soup with Scallops and Shrimp is that it’s darn tasty.
Homemade stock will make the best-tasting soup and if you take time to fill your freezer with chicken stock now, you’ll be thanking yourself all winter. Once you have stock, it only takes a few minutes to infuse the flavor and healing properties of fresh ginger root into it. Ginger adds an intensity of flavor to stock that is both soothing and invigorating. It awakens your senses and warms you right to your core.