Soulful Veggie Chowder
Cravings have never really been an issue for me. Certainly few and far between, but every once in a while I get a hankering for a flavour or texture to soothe my soul. So when one night, not long ago I began thought of a warm bowl of chowder came to mind, some may have seen this as problematic given I don't eat half the ingredients of a chowder. So with no milk, no fish and no clams, the foundation of your traditional chowder ingredients were no where to be found in my kitchen. I was on a mission and it was going to be all my dairy free, seafood free craving had dreamed of.
Dairy and I are not friends. You may or may not be in the same boat, but there is one thing for sure if you are working with any sort of inflammatory condition such as IBS, Crohn's, Colitis or even Arthritis, dairy will certainly not be helping your case. I had NO idea that cheese was so problematic for me until I started to observe the pattern of constipation consistently the next day after dairy. The shitty part (pun intended) was that depending on the amount of dairy consumed over a couple of days, it would sometimes take me a full five dairy free days before i could get my bowel movements back to normal. The message from my body started getting louder and louder, until there was abdominal pain and that is when I started to listen.
I ask my clients all the time. "Are you constipated?" The answer is always, no. Until I rephrase the question to, "Are you having 1-2 bowel movements per day." Now with a stunned looked on their face they realize they are in fact constipated and they are lucky to have 1 bowel movement a day.
While the removal of dairy seems like a cruel and unnecessary thing to do to a person, if the alternative tasted just as good, if not better, than would it seem so extreme? Often we aren't aware of the sensitivity until we remove them and begin to notice symptoms we never recognized before disappear. While I don't believe everyone needs to be dairy free, it is worth exploring your dairy free options to reduce inflammation and experience the deliciousness that's on the other side of the pond.
Whether you are avoiding dairy all together or are open to tasting the rainbow, this Soulful Veggie Chowder had both Eric and I going back for seconds and we won't lie, we made another pot the next day.... ok and truthfully again later in the week. It is that good!
So grab a bowl and spoon and dig in, you're going to love it!
Soulful Veggie Chowder
3/4 cup cashews
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 medium onions diced
3-4 garlic cloves minced
1 cup cauliflower diced
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cups potatoes cubed
5 cups water
1 bouillon cube
1 can black beans
3 tbsp dried parsley
2 bay leaves
2 dash cayenne
1/4 tsp salt + pepper
Soak cashews in water over night. Didn't have time to plan this? No worry! Soak in hot water for 30 minutes, or while you are prepping the other ingredients. Just remember the longer they can soak, the smoother the texture will be for you.
In a medium sized pot over medium heat, add your coconut oil. Once melted, added your onion, garlic, cauliflower, mushrooms, potatoes and zucchini. Cook with a lid on for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Drain cashew from their soaking water and place in a blender. Add 2 cups of fresh water and blend until smooth. If your cashews were not soaked for long use hot water. Add cashew cream to soup.
Add 3 additional cups of water, plus your bouillon cube, black beans, parsley, bay leaves, cayenne, salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, uncovered.
Cook for 10-15 minutes, until potatoes are desired texture.
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