|Buffy in her traveling crate|
We live near Green Lake, which is surrounded by possibly the most popular walking/running path in Seattle, and have taken advantage of that. Unfortunately I bashed my big toe on a piece of raised sidewalk the other day, and walking for pleasure and exercise has temporarily lost some of its appeal. We're also within walking distance of various shops and restaurants and have sampled some of the local offerings. Restaurant food prices are surprisingly reasonable here considering the high cost of everything else. At the local farmers market last week I saw green beans for $9/pound! I also saw them for $3 and $4 which seems like a lot compared to back home. And the regressive sales tax is a whopping 9 percent, 9.3 in restaurants.
This week we're taking care of our granddaughter full time until her new day care center opens next week. She's napping now and I thought this would be a good time to catch up with the blog. My husband took her to the zoo this morning (I didn't want to do the walk with my wrecked toe) and I used that opportunity to make a soup that I've been wanting to experiment with since before we left Madison.
Before I get to the soup I have to mention some of the food-related places we've visited recently starting with the Theo chocolate factory. We didn't plan enough ahead to get a spot on the factory tour, but we visited the storefront, and holy cacao! All you chocoholics would have been in bliss consciousness. There are displays of all the different chocolates they sell with heaps of samples in front of each one. I bought two bars and a lip balm but I think I may have eaten my weight in chocolate samples. Sorry Theo...
Kisaku. At Kisaku we had delicious edamame and very good vegetable rolls. To our surprise, the rolls came with a complimentary salad and bowl of miso soup. Too bad the soup was made with fish stock, and when I told the waitress we were vegetarian, no offer of veg soup was made. Bummer.
So about the soup I made for today's post.. I was trying to make something similar to the soup we had at a vegan meet-up dinner back in Madison, and while the two main ingredients are the same, the soup tastes very different. My son and I liked it a lot but my granddaughter was not thrilled. To be fair to the soup, I have to add that she wasn't very hungry today, and mostly dumped her food onto the floor, to the delight of the dog. I think she would have liked it more yesterday when she seemed to have the appetite of a young bear. (You can view her reaction below.) I didn't spice the soup up as much as I might have because I was planning to offer some to the babe, but I probably would have added something hot. I have to say that the soup had a very fresh taste exactly like the veggies it was made from.
Zucchini spinach soup
- 6 cups fresh zucchini, in small cubes
- small bunch fresh spinach, washed well
- 1 - 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 - 4 cloves garlic, sliced
- juice of 1 lemon (about 1/4 cup) plus zest
- 1-1/2 cups white kidney or cannelini beans, rinsed well and drained if from a can
- 1 cup water or broth
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar (evaporated cane juice)
- 1/2 - 1 teaspoon dried dill weed (to taste)
- fresh ground pepper to taste (optional)
- Saute the zucchini and garlic in the oil in a wok or large pan until the zucchini begins to brown and soften, about 5 minutes.
- Add the spinach, and toss to wilt, about 1 minute or less.
- Place the vegetables, lemon juice and zest, beans, water or broth, salt*, sugar and dill in blender and blend until very smooth and creamy. (*If you are using broth, blend and taste before adding salt.)
- Place blended soup in a pot and heat gently to desired temperature. Grind pepper over the top if desired.