Chipotle & Chickpea Soup

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After spending the last couple of weeks eating like there’s no tomorrow I woke up the first day of the new year thinking that I have to put an end to all the overindulgence. To revel in homemade Christmas treats is fine over the holiday but there’s an end to everything and I have finally started craving for things less sweet.

This soup was simply thrown together by some things that I was able to find in the pantry and the refrigerator. We woke up just in time to eat lunch (!) so the supermarket didn’t seem like an appealing option. But, I have come to realize that my best recipes are often invented this way and this soup is no exception. I love the smokey flavor of chipotle combined with the sweet butternut squash and the fresh cilantro. The soup is bursting with flavor and is perfect for any occasion. Festive enough to invite your friends to and simple enough to be eaten any day of the week. And for us, it was the perfect meal to start of the new year!

Chipotle & Chickpea Soup

Ingredients:

  • 750 g cooked chickpeas (two 400 g cans)
  • 200 g butternut squash
  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 3 medium sized tomatoes
  • 1 leaf stalk of a celery head
  • 1.5-2 tsp cumin
  • 0.5 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 dried chipotle
  • 1.5-2 tsp salt
  • 4.5 dl / 2 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • juice from half a lemon
  • 1.5 l water

Method:

  1. Start by cutting a cross at the top of each tomato. Place them in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for a few minutes, then rinse in cold water and remove the skin.
  2. Grind the dried chipotle into a flaky powder and chop the onion, celery stalk and garlic finely. Dice the butternut squash and chop the tomatoes in small pieces. Set aside in separate bowls.
  3. Fry the onion at medium heat until soft and golden. Add the garlic, celery, cumin and chipotle. Fry until the raw garlic smell is gone.
  4. Add the butternut squash, tomatoes and a few dl of the water. Bring to boil and then lower the heat and let it simmer for five minutes. Add the rest of the water plus the rest of the ingredients, except the cilantro, and let it simmer until the butternut squash is soft.
  5. At the end you add the fresh cilantro plus more water and salt if needed. Enjoy!

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Vegan Gingerbread Lingonberry Cake

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This recipe comes just in time for the big holiday and it is the perfect Christmas cake. With a soft and aromatic ginger bread cake, creamy frosting and crunchy sugared berries this cake is all you want for Christmas. Ok, maybe not all but close enough!

If you can’t find lingonberries or lingonberry jam where you live, you may substitute it with cranberries or cranberry jam. Cranberries are, just as lingonberries, a bit acid. This is a great combination with the sweetness of the cake and frosting. If you would like a less sweet lingonberry jam (which I prefer for this cake) I recommend you to prepare your own. Make a small batch just for the frosting of the cake. Heat a small amount of berries and stir in a little sugar until dissolved. Let it cool before you use.

Even though the cake is rich and gooey it still feels light and fresh so don’t cut too small pieces!

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Vegan Gingerbread Cake With Lingonberry

Ingredients:

Cake

  • 100 g vegan margarine of good quality (for example earth balance)
  • 2.5 dl / 1.05 cup caster sugar
  • 1 dl / 0.4 cup soy cream
  • 1.25 dl / 0.5 cup soy milk
  • 2.5 dl / 1.05 cup wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground clove
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Frosting

  • 250 g vegan cream cheese
  • 150 g vegan margarine
  • 2 dl powdered sugar
  • pinch of pure vanilla powder
  • 0.75 dl lingonberry jam

Sugar frosted lingonberries

  • 1 dl / 0.4 cup lingonberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 dl / 0.4 cup water
  • 1.5 dl / 0.63 cup caster sugar
  • coconut flakes

Method:

  1. Heat the oven to 175°C / 347°F. Melt margarine and leave to cool. Mix sugar and soy cream in a large bowl. Add milk and margarine. Mix flour, baking powder and spices and carefully stir it in with the wet mix. Pour the cake mix into a buttered and floured springform cake pan. Bake for 45 minutes. Let it cool before you cut in it.
  2. Before you start stirring together the ingredients to the frosting, make sure the margarine and cream cheese is at room temperature. Stir together all the ingredients for the frosting except the lingonberry jam. It is done when the frosting is smooth. Divide the frosting into two bowls. Add the lingonberry jam to one of them and mix with a spoon.
  3. For the sugar frosted lingonberries you heat the water and stir in 1 dl of the sugar. Keep stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved. Let it cool. Dip the berries in the sugared water and then gently roll the berries in sugar. Leave on a plate until they set.
  4. It is time to start putting the cake together. First you cut of the rounded top of the cake. You then divide the cake in two equally sized pieces. Spread the lingonberry frosting over one of the pieces and then add the other piece on top of it. Spread the rest of the frosting (the one without jam) over the whole cake, sides included. Garnish with coconut flakes and sugar frosted lingonberries.

 

 

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