I usually cook lentils in the style of Indian dal until they break down and become a thick stew. But these I wanted to retain their shape and texture, so I cooked them just until tender in plenty of liquid. At the very end I stirred in cumin, lemon zest and a chiffonade of lacinato kale. Also known as dinosaur or Tuscan kale, this is my favorite Italian variety of kale, with its dark blue-green leaves. It also makes an excellent salad or green smoothie.
This soup was creamy and rich tasting, but obviously had no dairy products added to it. After grilling six ears of corn I sliced off the kernels and pureed most of them in my Vitamix with a small amount of vegetable stock, cumin, salt and pepper. Then I stirred in the remaining grilled kernels for added texture.
This is really a combination of two soups that could have been great on their own, but together produced more depth of flavor with layers of sweetness and spice. One is a carrot puree with cumin and ginger, into which I stirred red lentils and the zest of two large lemons.
This soup is easy and loaded with fat free vegan flavor. It is simply a puree of cauliflower, kale, onion, garlic and dill. I served it hot, but I think it would work equally well chilled with a squeeze of lemon.
If you have never tried rock shrimp you really must. They are like tiny nuggets of lobster. Also similar to lobster in texture, but not taste, is monkfish, which is sold in long meaty medallions. I like to cook all kinds of fish in simmering liquids as soups or stews. Here I poached the seafood in a combination of fish and vegetable stocks with white wine, chopped fennel and onion, saffron and cilantro.
These shirataki noodles come in a variety of shapes and are a great, almost calorie-free, alternative to pasta. I think they work best in soups. Here I combined them with scallops, squid, bok choy, shiitake mushrooms, scallions, saffron and cilantro for a light Asian meal. These mexican fish bowls made the perfect presentation.