As I have mentioned before, hubby L and I are trying to stick to our Mark Bittman VB6 nutritional changeover (so as not to call it a diet) and we are doing quite well and have both lost at least 4-5 kilos!
The major part of this changeover is eating vegan during the day, and that of course has increased our tofu intake.
This hasn’t been too much of a sacrifice and we are learning our way around tofu preparation. Though I had eaten tofu often before I had not used silken tofu as a substitute for cream before. And this was to be an inspiration for what I hope will become an successful long-term relationship.
A few weeks back I read Toni Dash from Boulder Locavore post and recipe for Peach Lemongrass Soup with Crème Fraiche.
I love Toni’s local approach, her ideas and recipes and the way she explores them on her blog, on twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
I was intrigued by using peaches in a soup without it being a dessert dish. However the recipe called for 1 cup / 250 ml of heavy whipping cream and some crème fraiche , both of which aren’t an option for me being lactose-intolerant.
I could have used lactose-free products but I wanted to try and make it spicier and vegan so I decided to use silken tofu. And it was a success!
An enticing blend of flavors with an smooth and creamy texture.
Delicious at room temperature or cold, it makes a perfect first course for a late summer meal or a zesty lunch option.
I used white Saturn or Donut peaches because they were in season and too sweet to eat, yes unreal but true.
I would however recommend using yellow-fleshed ones or even red vine peaches (in the featured image at the top) that are not so sweet and have a beautiful red color, that will give your soup a more peachy color – as you will see in my pictures my soup doesn’t look as spectacular as Toni’s and tastes much different. Both are interesting approaches to a seldom-used soup fruit.
So you might want to give either one a whirl! And, thank you for the inspiration Toni!
Here is my recipe for:
Spicy Vegan Peach and Almond Soup
- 1 stick celery (washed peeled and finely chopped)
- 5 peaches (wash, skins and stones removed and chopped into pieces)
- 2 peach stones (saved from the peaches above)
- 1 stick lemongrass (cut in 3 pieces, ends slit and pounded)
- 1 teaspoon ginger oil (or ½ tsp of grated fresh ginger and 1 tsp of rice oil)
- 1 thin slice Scotch Bonnet (about ½ tsp of equivalent chili of your choice)
- 1 kaffir lime leaf
- 2 teaspoons grill salt & pepper mix (use your favorite, mine is from Jumeirah Hotel Frankfurt also has some anise seed in it)
- 12 whole almonds
- 4 Szechuan flower pepper buds ((optional) adore mine from PepperMongers)
- 500ml vegetable broth (of your choice)
- 200g silken tofu
|Grind the grill salt and pepper along with the kaffir lime leaf and the Szechuan pepper if using with a mortar and pestle until very fine.|
|Heat the ginger or rice oil on medium heat in a soup pot, add the celery and the ground spices, stir-fry 2 minutes.
Add the peaches, peach stones, almonds, lemongrass, ginger if using and stir-fry 2 more minutes if it is too hot, turn it down.
|Add the vegetable broth, mix well and bring to a simmer.
Put the lid on the pot and lower until very lightly simmering, cook in this way for 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit 10 minutes with the lid on.
|Meanwhile drain the silken tofu and whisk it with a whisk by hand until smooth. Set aside.|
|Carefully remove the 2 peach stones and the lemongrass stalks from the soup and discard.
Use an immersion blender to purree the soup as fine as possible. Whisk in the silken tofu and blend by hand until smooth.
|Set a sieve over a clean pot or soup bowl. Now pour the soup through the strainer to catch the rest of the nuts and any other pieces from the soup.
Taste and adjust seasoning, I did add a little salt.
|Serve at room temperature or cold. The soup will keep in a covered glass pitcher in the refrigerator for 3 days, just stir before serving.|