Drinking Your Veggies? Absolutely! - Cooking with Cacti (Adventures in healthier cooking) Blog at Allrecipes.com - 258010

Cooking with Cacti (Adventures in healthier cooking)

Drinking your veggies? Absolutely! 
Nov. 22, 2011 12:22 pm 
Updated: Nov. 22, 2011 1:21 pm
While my mom was visitng us, I had occasion to eat at an Irish Pub for lunch while we were on our way to see one sight or another.  Now, a pub is not a place you generally find lots of "healthy" food choices, so as I focused on the salad choices, I also asked about the soup choices.  The waiter mentioned some of the usual fare, but then also mentioned a Creamy Red Bell Pepper soup.  Now, I knew that it wouldn't be super healthy, because most creamy soups are heavy in fat content from the liberal use of cream and butter, but it was different, and so I had a salad with the soup.  Let me say, OMG!  I have never had a soup made from bell peppers that tasted sooooo good!  I scarfed it down and found myself quite full and very satisfied after the meal.

I could not get this soup out of my mind, and as such, I searched for something that sounded similar on AR. Fortunately, I was successful, finding http://allrecipes.com/recipe/red-pepper-soup/detail.aspx< .  Obviously, as is, the recipe is quite tasty, but since I am working to eat healthier, I did tweak it a bit.  Instead of the heavy cream, I substituted half as much half n half and a like amount of lowfat milk.  I think you could easily just use half n half and this would remain a pretty healthy bowl and would be more rich.  One thing I will note -- when done, this soup is quite sweet, too sweet for my personal tastes.  To balance out the sweetness, simply add some salt, and if you want a little kick to it some cayenne is a good addition.

It so happened, that I had agreed to assist in providing lunch at my church for a holiday decorating day.  Expecting about 50 people in total, and wanting to provide a variety of choices for people, I had already intended on chili as well as a good old-fashioned chicken noodle soup, but was looking for a third soup.  Something different, something tasty, something that people likely had never tried.  And here it was!  I made enough of this for that event and froze it until that day. The responses from people who tried it was fabulous.  All the soups/chili was a hit, and while I came with close to 80 cups worth of soups, I was going home with barely 10 cups in total.

For those curious souls that are also using WW for a weight loss/maintenance plan, this creamy red bell pepper soup is only 2 points.  On par with many of the "fat burning" soups that you will find on their recipe site.  I have frozen a couple of bowls of this, which I will bring in as part of lunch in the near future. 

I would encourage you, unless you are allergic to the ingredients, give it a try because it will surprise you!  And don't be afraid to tweak it with salt and spices to your personal tastes -- I did, and it made a huge difference to me and others.

Happy and Healthy Eating!
Nov. 22, 2011 1:21 pm
looks really yummy!!! Trying to add it to my box but AR is doing wonky things this afternoon... ;) Thanks!!!
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About Me
I've been cooking since I was a young kid, and have always enjoyed cooking (and eating) a good meal. Grew up in The South, but my family was all from the north; I have always loved Southern foods, but I like a very wide variety of things. Cooking is a way for me to relax, be creative, and try new things.
My favorite things to cook
My favorite food is soup -- any kind of soup really, I have yet to find one I wouldn't eat! Soup is easy and you can always tweak a recipe for personal tastes by simply mixing up the spices or adding some things. And a good bowl of warm soup is just great on a chilly day! I also enjoy grilling (what man doesn't?), and if there is a way to cook it on a grill, either I have tried it, or I am willing to give it a go!
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