Archive for the ‘Soups and Stews’ Category

Spinach Curried Chickpea Soup

| February 5th, 2016

Our family loves curry and it loves us back with its protective compounds like turmeric which gives curry its yellow color. However, not all curries on the market contain turmeric, so be sure to read the label. This powerful soup is loaded with goodness and great flavor.-serves 6

To your good health, Lee Newlin


1 cup dried chickpeas making 3 cups cooked or 3 cups canned, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 medium onion, finely chopped (approx. 1 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp curry powder with turmeric (Penzeys is a great spice company) add more if you like
1 pound small red-skin potatoes, cut in 1/2 inch dice
4 cups vegetable stock
2 cups unsweetened coconut milk (approximately one can)
1 medium organic zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch dice (around 2 cups)
6 cups spinach leaves or tatsoi chopped
Zest and  juice of 1 lime
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. In large pot, over medium high heat add onion and a little of the salt then sauté until softened about 4 minutes. When it begins to stick add a couple of tablespoons or so of water to release food. You don’t want to burn the food, just brown it some.
2. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute using a little bit of water to stop any sticking.
3. Adjust heat to low and add curry powder, lime zest, a bit of salt and potatoes, stirring constantly and adding water as needed, cooking for 15 minutes
4. Slowly pour in stock and coconut milk; add chickpeas and zucchini bringing to a boil; reduce heat to simmer and cook 15 minutes more with a lid to cover slightly ajar to release steam build up, until potatoes and zucchini are tender.
6. Off heat, season with additional salt if needed, and black pepper to taste then stir in spinach and lime juice.
7. Taste and adjust flavor if needed with salt and/or black pepper and let sit covered for 15 minutes.

Comforting Oat Berries and Mushroom Soup

| December 30th, 2014


This soup is amazing. It is loaded with flavor AND it is so good for your health. It is hard to beat the nutrition in this combination and is it ever comforting on a cold winter night!   Look for the oat berries or farro grain in your market that are semi pearled as they cook much quicker.                                                                                                                                                                    -To your good health, Lee Newlin



1/3 cup dried mushrooms like porcini
1 pound fresh mushrooms (button, cremini, shiitake or a mixture)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
1 large stalk celery diced
3 tablespoons of your best olive oil
3/4 cup oat berries, farro, pearled barley, or spelt, rinsed (oat berries are gluten free)
6 cups vegetarian or organic chicken broth or stock
1/2 cup Madeira wine
1 tablespoon tomato paste
Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

1. Cover dried mushrooms with 1 cup boiling water, and set aside for 20 minutes.
2. Prepare fresh, cleaned mushrooms, garlic, onion, carrots and celery and set near the stove for the soup assembly.
3. Heat a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium heat.
4. Add olive oil, onions, carrots and celery and sauté until onions begin to color, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir often.
5. Add garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds.
6. Add fresh mushrooms, and cook until they begin to release liquid, about 5 to 10 minutes. Raise heat and add oat berries and sauté until it begins to color.
7. Add broth, wine and tomato paste.
8. Drain dried mushrooms and finely chop; strain mushroom-soaking liquid to remove any grit and add to pot along with the reconstituted mushrooms.
9. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, and simmer for about 40 minutes, until barley is just tender. Adjust seasonings and serve with minced fresh parsley or chives and/or a dollop of crème fraîche, (optional of course).

Spring Tide Asparagus Soup

| March 18th, 2014

(serves 4-6)


1 lb  green asparagus, cleaned and  trimmed.  Reserve tough ends for broth

1 large sprig of fresh thyme

1 bay leaf

1/2 cup chopped parsley

1 large bunch of scallions, green part set aside, reserve white part chopped (about 2 cups)

2 tbsp olive oil

1 cup of peeled and sliced potato

1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon

Sea salt and pepper, to taste

3 tbsp fresh lemon juice, use more if it needs brightening

1/2 cup coconut milk  OR  1/3 cup vegan cream cheese  (to stir in at the end)


For Broth

In a large pot with 5 cups of water add asparagus ends, thyme, bay leaf, parsley and scallion greens only.

Add 1/2 tsp. of salt and bring to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer for 25 minutes. Strain it, pressing the solids to utilize all the flavors.  Discard the solids.  Set broth to the side.

For Soup

Snap off the tips of the asparagus where they break normally.  Reserve the tips while you  break the remaining “middles”  into pieces  roughly about an inch or two in length.

Over medium heat add olive oil in a large soup pot adding  the remaining white part of the scallions, asparagus middles, potato slices and tarragon at the same time.  Cook for 5 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Pour the cooled reserved stock through a strainer right into the pot of asparagus and potato mixture and simmer for 5 more minutes.

Using a stick blender puree the finished soup until smooth.

Season with salt and pepper to taste, lemon and add asparagus tips and coconut milk simmering 5 minutes more.  Delay doing this unless you are going to serve immediately.  The bright green color fades when it sits too long.

-To your good health, Lee Newlin

Beans, Greens and Roasted Garlic Soup

| February 12th, 2013

Okay Ann Wellman! (my niece). Here is the solution to your fear of kale. You are not supposed to have favorites but this soup is so nourishing and full of good things to build up your immune system, it’s hard not to admit just how much we love it. Several years ago and after many attempts, I found that by adding other great flavors and healthy ingredients, it became a wonderful as well as delicious favorite soup. So don’t be afraid to try this. You’ll fall in love with kale just like we did.

-To Your Good Health Annie, Aunt Lee

Ingredients 6-8 servings

1 complete head of garlic
1 cup of small dried tube shaped gluten free pasta
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 large leek cleaned chopped using a little of the green and all of the white part
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
8 cups chopped, cleaned kale stemmed removed (around a bunch)
3-4 cups peeled, diced fresh sweet potatoes
2 cans of drained and rinsed cannellini or white kidney beans
7-8 cups vegetable stock
(1) 16 oz, can of Italian diced tomatoes do not drain
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1-2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoons black pepper
pinch of cayenne pepper to brighten
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil


Preheat oven 425º- Roast the head of garlic drizzled with olive oil and wrapped in foil- around 1 hour or until soft. Set aside to cool.
Cook the pasta al dente so it holds up well in the soup. Rinse w/ cold water, drain and set aside.
In a large pan sauté gently the leek and rosemary in the olive oil for 5 minutes.
Add kale, sweet potato and the roasted garlic and sauté while stirring often for 5 minutes.
Add beans, tomatoes and stock and bring to a slow boil. Immediately lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes
Add prepared pasta, Italian seasoning, cayenne, salt and pepper, and basil (optional)
Heat through but don’t boil. Serve immediately. (You could prepare this in advance saving the cooked pasta, beans, basil and tomatoes to add a couple of minutes just before serving)

-To Your Good Health, Lee

Tuscan Kale and White Bean Soup

| September 11th, 2012

Serves 8

There is so much more to preparing fantastic Italian soup than by throwing in some vegetables and stock. It is layered with a myriad of flavors and has the proper texture by adding ingredients in order. As my dad used to say….”Low and slow”. It is important to use the right stock, the freshest ingredients and correct seasonings. This soup will make you close your eyes and feel transported to the Tuscany hillsides. The flavor is outstanding and it is loaded with nutritious ingredients as well.

1 cup dried cannellini beans soaked overnight or 2 cans cannellini beans drained
1 large bay leaf
1 t. sea salt

3 T. olive oil
1 large onion chopped
1 cup chopped celery
1 large carrot diced
1 T fresh thyme minced
1/8 t. red pepper flakes
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups vegetable stock
1 bunch of chopped Toscana kale, stems removed or 1/2 head green cabbage cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 large peeled white potato cut into 1/2 inch dice

2 cups diced tomatoes
1 cup frozen or fresh green peas
Optional: 3 thick slices gluten free or peasant bread cut into smaller pieces and toasted
1/4 cup fresh basil
1 cup good parmesan


-Place soaked beans in a medium sauce pan along with 4 cups of water and a bay leaf. Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat. Simmer for 20-25 minutes testing to see if the beans are just barely beginning to soften. Remove from heat and strain beans and bay leaf out of hot water into a bowl with 1 teaspoon salt. Set aside beans.
-In a large soup pot over medium heat, sauté the onion, celery, and carrots in the olive oil until the onion is just opaque. Add thyme, pepper flakes and garlic; sauté an additional 5 minutes.
-Slowly add stock. Place the kale and/ or green cabbage, reserved beans, potatoes in the pot and bring just to a boil then reduce heat to low; Place lid on pot slightly ajar and slowly simmer 45 minutes stirring gently every 15 minutes to prevent any sticking. Test for softness of white beans. You don’t want the beans to fall apart.
-Add tomatoes and peas. Place lid on pot slightly ajar and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes longer. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaf.
-Lastly remove soup from heat tasting for seasoning and divide among bowls. Add chopped fresh basil and toasted bread slices to soup bowls and; let stand 10 minutes. Scatter cheese on top of each serving with ground pepper then serve.
-To your good health, Lee Newlin (ciao bella!)


| July 4th, 2012



Mountain Red, Carola, All Blue Potatoes



We love cold soup on a hot day for lunch and this is a great recipe to make when potatoes, leeks, garlic and onions are coming in straight from our market gardens.  I shared this recipe at the Fearrington Village Farmer’s Market on Tuesday with a sampling for our customers.  This is a great farmer’s market to visit if you are in the Pittsboro area.

Don’t be turned off to potatoes as they are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins C, B6 and minerals.   Take away the extra fat and deep frying, potatoes are an exceptionally healthful low calorie, high fiber food that offers significant protection against cardiovascular disease and cancer. Potato’s reputation as a high-carb, white starch has removed them from the meals of many a weight-conscious eater, and this stereotype is due for a significant overhaul. Agricultural Research Service plant geneticist, Roy Navarre, has identified 60 different kinds of phytochemicals and vitamins in the skins and flesh of these multicolored wonders.                            



1 whole bulb garlic

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

2 leeks, white and light green parts only, coarsely chopped

1 onion, chopped (yellow onions are the most nutritious)

3/4 cup dry white wine

4 medium organic potatoes, peeled if you prefer and then sliced

4 cups vegetable broth or chicken stock

1  teaspoon Celtic salt or to taste

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

4 sprigs fresh sage

2 T. fresh lemon juice

3 cups of combined milk and buttermilk

chopped fresh chives to garnish


Directions                                      Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut off the top 1/4 of the tapered end of the garlic bulb so that all of the cloves are exposed. Drizzle with the olive oil, place in an oven proof  covered dish and bake for about 1 hour, or until the top is browned and the individual cloves are soft throughout. Let cool.

Melt the butter in a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the leek and onion and stir for about 5 minutes, or until they are translucent but not yet brown. Add the wine and reduce this by cooking for 2 more minutes.

Add the potatoes and stock. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 40 minutes.

Add the salt, pepper, and sage. Take pot off heat and let the soup cool.

Extract each of the individual garlic cloves by pinching the end of each clove pushing all of it out.  Add them to the stockpot.

After cooling remove sage sprigs, then puree the cooled soup in a blender or food processor.  Add lemon.   Refrigerate until chilled.

Serve cold in chilled bowls with a topping of minced chives, chives blossoms or  dollop of Greek yogurt.

You Need This Soup

| November 4th, 2011

Serves 6-8

Whenever we travel I have this soup stored in my freezer at home ready to boost our immune systems into fighting off any bug that we might have picked up. It is great to make for family and friends as well as making it for yourself. Everything is right here to come to the rescue from fighting colds to cancer plus it is delicious. Have everything ready to go and it will pull together quickly. You can do this. -To your good health, Lee

1 ½ C. dried navy or black beans rinsed and cooked till just tender or 2 cans drained.
1 tsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
Zest of 1 organic lime and juiced separately
1 small red onion diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 large bulb fennel, finely chopped
6 cups greens (cabbage, kale, collards, broccoli leaves) chopped into ½ ” pieces
2-3 cups vegetable stock
28 oz. can tomatoes, diced with juice or 6 medium fresh tomatoes
1 small can chopped green chilies mild
Chopped cilantro to garnish
Optional or delete if vegan- Dollop of Greek yogurt or strained kefir cheese to go on top of each bowl


Heat oil in a soup pot over medium heat no hotter than that and immediately add garlic.

Add lime zest stirring constantly until garlic is tender- a few seconds. DO NOT BROWN

Toss in onion, celery, and fennel and sweat all, stirring, until soft (4-5 minutes).

Add all greens and stock then cover pan and gently cook for 4-6 minutes.

Gently pour in beans and tomatoes and heat through only

Stir in chilies, cilantro and lime juice to taste, heat through once more and serve

Garnish each bowl with the Greek yogurt or chopped cilantro on top.
(Do not boil this soup or you risk losing that wonderful green color)

I know it’s early but……..

| August 18th, 2010

Watching all the lovely butternut squash ripening in our garden makes me excited about upcoming fall soups. I believe that my Miracle Butternut soup saved a life…mine to be precise. Read on…

This heartwarming soup created in my own kitchen is the subject of my story. Back in January of 2005 I had prepared it for family and friends with great expectations. However, just a few hours later after dinner, I suddenly felt pain in my abdomen, unlike anything I had ever experienced. After a couple of days of trying to convince myself that the pain would go away on its own, we finally headed to the emergency clinic expecting an ulcer at the worst.

My disease was non-symptomatic, and maybe the pain was not related to it. The mystery will never be solved as to why there was pain, but was there a correlation between my abdominal pain and eating this antioxidant rich butternut squash soup? I will always believe that there was. It led to the accurate diagnosis and successful treatment of Stage 3 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This is why I call butternut squash soup my “miracle” soup. Hope you will try it this fall and know that I will be smiling.

Lee’s Miracle Butternut Squash Soup


1 large butternut squash cut in half lengthwise
Salt and fresh black pepper
2 T. olive oil divided
6 whole cloves of garlic peeled
10 dried sage leaves or 2 t. powdered sage

1 T organic farm butter
1 large or 2 medium sized leeks well washed and cut into circles (use white part and a bit of the pale green part only)
1 large stalk celery roughly chopped
1 large peeled carrot roughly chopped
2 bay leaves
1 t. dried thyme
1 t. turmeric (great disease fighter)
½ t. ground ginger
½ t. ground cinnamon
6 cups chicken or vegetable stock (homemade would be best but if you don’t have time use the boxed kind)
½ cup coconut milk

2 T fresh chives chopped for garnish and flavor
Shards of parmesan cheese
Fresh minced thyme.


Preheat oven to 375F

Place halved, seeded and cleaned butternut squash on a sided baking sheet. Season the insides of both pieces with salt and pepper and rub with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Place 3 peeled garlic cloves (they make this soup so flavorable!) under each side of the cavity of the squash where the seeds were scooped out. Lay the squash cut side down on a baking sheet, scatter the sage leaves under each piece of squash and roast for approximately 45 minutes or until the squash is tender but not mushy.

When squash is cool enough to handle, peel and cut it up into chunks about 2 inch cubes. Reserve peeled garlic for adding to this soup later.

Meanwhile melt butter and remaining olive oil in a large heavy pot over medium-low heat. Add the leeks, celery and carrots and a generous pinch of salt. Stir the mixture occasionally until tender and starting to brown, about 10 minutes.

Add the roasted squash and garlic, bay leaves, thyme, turmeric, ground ginger, cinnamon and stock. Bring to a slow boil then reduce heat to low, partially cover, and simmer 20 minutes. Lastly, stir in the coconut milk and continue to heat over low flame for a minute.

Off heat add if needed salt, pepper and remove bay leaf. Puree with an immersion blender or in batches, carefully puree in a blender until smooth. If it’s too thick to your liking add more chicken broth and gently reheat.

Serve hot in bowls topped with a few chards of parmesan, chopped chives or green onions or minced fresh thyme. Cinnamon gluten free croutons would be a great addition on top.
Optional idea: This soup would be wonderful to flavor risotto, by alternating broth and some of this soup for the liquid in your recipe.
serves 6-8

….Now sit down and enjoy this soup and enjoy life!


Asparagus Soup Primo

| November 6th, 2009


1 1/2 pounds green asparagus cleaned & trimmed. Reserve ends for broth
1 large bunch of scallions, green part set aside, white part chopped (about 2 cups)
1 cup of peeled and sliced potato
Sprig of fresh thyme
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 bay leaf
2 T. butter or Earth Balance (butter substitute)
1 T fresh lemon juice
Sea salt and pepper, to taste

In a large pot with 5 cups of water add asparagus ends, herbs, and scallion greens. Add 1/2 teasp. of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for 25 minutes. Strain it and set aside.

Cut off the tips of the asparagus where they break normally. Set aside while you chop the remaining “middles” into 1/2 inch pieces.
Melt butter in a soup pot. Over medium heat add the white part of the scallions, asparagus middles and potato slices. Cook for 5 minutes or until the butter starts to brown.

Pour the reserved hot stock through a strainer right into the pot of asparagus and potato and simmer for 5 minutes. Press solids to get all flavors out. Using a stick blender puree the soup until smooth.
Season with salt and pepper to taste and add asparagus tips, simmering 5 minutes more. Serve immediately — the bright green color fades when it sits too long.

Quinoa and Chickpea Salad

| July 6th, 2008

Quinoa is a tiny, ancient Peruvian seed with a mild, nutty flavor, which is often used like a grain. The protein content reigns supreme at an average of 16%, compared with 7% for rice, 10% for millet and 14% for wheat. Some varieties of Quinoa have more than 20% protein content.

This recipe is a great way to “beef” up dinner so you can serve a meatless meal with plenty of nutrition as well as protein and it is delicious!

Serves 3-4

1 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup canned or cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 ripe tomato, seeded and chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of 1 fresh lime
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander


Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse under cold running water until the water runs clear. Bring the broth to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the cleaned, drained quinoa and salt and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes or until tender and the liquid is absorbed.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine the chickpeas, tomato, garlic, lime juice, cilantro, parsley, oil, and spices. Add the cooked quinoa and toss to coat well. Serve with avocado slices or on a bed of lettuce.

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving
Calories: 283 calories
Carbs: 46 g
Sodium: 200 mg
Fat: 8 g
Protein: 9 g
Fiber: 6 mg