Get ready to be blown away by my friend Darlene Foster’s latest cookbook review! Despite her busy schedule promoting her newly published book, “You Can Take The Girl From The Prairie,” Darlene still managed to find the time to whip up some delectable dishes from this cookbook and share her expert insights. Her dedication to the culinary arts is truly admirable, and her review is a must-read for anyone looking to elevate their cooking game. So, put on your apron and get ready to be inspired by Darlene’s mouth-watering creations! And when you need a break from cooking, why not head over to Amazon and treat yourself to Darlene’s latest book?
I didn’t purchase this cookbook as I have too many cookbooks already. But I was pleased to see that a number of the recipes are online. I wasn’t feeling well and decided I wanted to eat some soup, so tried this recipe. It was so good, and I know I will make it again. It was easy, quick, and made a lot, so I had it for a few days. I especially like that you can use whatever vegetables you have on hand! I cut back on the salt and ground some pepper over it. I had two bowls with some crusty bread and felt much better after eating it.
Does this cookbook deserve space on my shelf?
Yes, if I didn’t already have too many cookbooks. Other recipes online looked good as well. For anyone looking for wholesome, nutritious meals, this would be perfect. (and if you are looking for vegan, gluten-free ideas to make for guests). It may end up on my already crowded shelf; you never know.
COZY AT HOME SPICY ANY-VEGGIE SOUP
Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free
8 cups (2 L)
This spicy, bursting-with-flavour soup can be made with whatever veggies you have lurking in the crisper and pantry. My favourite combination of veggies is broccoli (rich in immune-boosting vitamin C), butternut squash, carrots, and frozen green beans, and I’ve detailed the amounts I use in my recipe below. You can use any veggies you love as long as it totals 8 cups of chopped veggies.
·1 tablespoon (15 mL) coconut oil or olive oil
·2 1/2 cups (625 mL) water
·1 (14-ounce/398 mL) can light coconut milk
·1 (14-ounce/398 mL) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes*
·3 cups (190 g) broccoli florets (1 1/2-inch florets)**
·2 cups (270 g) peeled, seeded, and chopped butternut squash (1/2-inch cubes)
·1 1/2 cups (195 g) chopped peeled carrots (1/2-inch thick coins)
·1 1/2 cups (160 g) frozen cut green beans***
·2 teaspoons red pepper flakes, or to taste****
·1 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
·1 teaspoon garlic powder
·1 cup (170 g) uncooked red lentils
·2 tablespoons (30 mL) apple cider vinegar, or to taste
·Herbamare, for garnish (optional)
1. To a large pot, add the oil, water, coconut milk, diced tomatoes (with juices), broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, frozen green beans, red pepper flakes, salt (starting with 3/4 teaspoon), garlic powder, and red lentils. Stir to combine.
2. Set the heat to high, cover with a tight-fitting lid, and bring the mixture to a low boil. Once it comes to a boil, remove the lid and reduce the heat to medium. Stir again, scraping off any lentils stuck to the bottom of the pot.
3. Simmer, covered, over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft and the veggies are just fork tender. The veggies should have a touch of resistance when pierced with a fork. The cook time will vary based on the type of veggies you use.
4. After cooking, remove the lid and stir in the apple cider vinegar, starting with one tablespoon and adding from there, to taste (we love 2 tablespoons for a lot of brightness). Sometimes, there may be a slight separation in the soup after adding the vinegar, depending on the brand of coconut milk used. This is nothing to worry about. Season with more salt, if desired (I add another 1/4 teaspoon of fine sea salt, plus a bit of Herbamare). I also enjoy adding a bit more apple cider vinegar to my individual serving because I adore its tanginess in this soup. Serve and enjoy. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 to 5 days.
* I love fire-roasted diced canned tomatoes in this soup, but feel free to use regular canned diced tomatoes if that’s what you have.
** You can use practically any veggies you have on hand (most veggies should work, however, I probably wouldn’t try beets or eggplant, but maybe that’s just me). Veggies to try out: broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, carrots, sweet potatoes, yellow or red potatoes, button mushrooms, squash, sautéed onions/garlic/celery, thickly sliced zucchini (with skin), kale, frozen peas, etc. Just make sure thechopped veggies total 8 cups. If using onion, celery, or garlic, be sure to sauté them in the oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until softened, before adding the remaining ingredients. I have not tested any frozen veggies besides frozen green beans, so I can’t vouch for other ones working.
*** If using French-cut frozen green beans (the thin variety), add them during the last 5 minutes of cooking to prevent them from softening too much.
**** 2 teaspoons of red chili flakes results in a zippy, moderate level of heat (my fave way to make this soup!). If serving to spice-shy folks, start with 1 teaspoon (for a mild soup) and add more after cooking, if desired.
About Darlene Foster
Dreamer of dreams, teller of tales
I created this blog for writers, readers, travelers, dreamers, friends and friends I haven’t met yet. I believe everyone has a right to dream and everyone has the capability to make their dreams come true. I wish to share some of my dreams and would love to hear about yours. I welcome any comments, suggestions, words of wisdom and interesting stories.
A bit about me. I am a writer of children’s stories, a retired employment counsellor, and ESL tutor, a wife, mother and grandmother. I love travelling, reading, shoes, cooking, sewing, music, chocolate, walking on the beach and making new friends. My grandson once called me “super-mega-woman-supreme”. I was brought up on a ranch near Medicine Hat, Alberta, where I dreamt of travelling the world and meeting interesting people. I currently divide my time between Orihuela Costa in Spain and the west coast of British Columbia, Canada. My husband, Paul, and I enjoy spending time with our adorable rescue dogs, Dot and Lia.
I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
My short stories have won prizes and have appeared in a number of anthologies. I have eight published books in a series about a spunky young girl who loves to travel, Amanda in Arabia – The Perfume Flask, Amanda in Spain-The Girl in the Painting, Amanda in England-the Missing Novel, Amanda in Alberta – The Writing on the Stone, Amanda on the Danube-The Sounds of Music, Amanda in New Mexico – Ghosts in the Wind, Amanda in Holland: Missing in Action and Amanda in Malta:The Sleeping Lady. Readers from seven to seventy plus enjoy following Amanda and her adventures. My bilingual book, Pig on Trial/Cerito a juicio is in English and Spanish.
Thank you once again Darlene for taking the time out of your enormously busy schedule to send us this wonderful review and recipe.
9 responses to “COOKBOOK CONFIDENTIAL – Darlene Foster reviews Oh She Glows for Dinner by Angela Lidden”
Thanks for featuring the recipe I tried and my newest book. This cookbook is a fun one and I’m enjoying the other recipes featured. Happy cooking and baking!
Hi, Darlene – I love your version of this recipe. I’ve made this one before but with broccoli, cauliflower and carrots. I like your idea of using butternut squash and green beans. I will definitely give that a try next time. Congratulations on your newest book. Very exciting!
Thanks, Donna. I put in whatever I have on hand actually. I have included red peppers, peas and even some asparagus. As long as its a vegetable you like, it should work. I love the versatility of this recipe. Angela suggested that eggplant might not work but I don’t see why not. And as for beets, I guess she has never had borsht! xo
Hi Bernadette, this looks like a super soup recipe and easy to make. Thanks for sharing.
Super easy, I’m sure your family would like it.
A good hearty vegetable soup – wonderful recipe!
A good bowl of soup is so comforting, and the more veg, the better! I’m not familiar with Herbamare; what is it that you suggest for garnish?
This looks like a soup I would love. Will make it when fall rolls around. Bernie