With Thanksgiving looming, and so many recipes yet to try… I thought I would share my ideal Conscious Cook Thanksgiving menu. I do still plan to make the recipes eventually, but as you can imagine, this is The Roving Stove’s busiest time of year, so I can’t promise to test every recipe before the holiday. I thought I would enlist help from those of you that already have the book. I’ve started with the Asparagus Soup. I’m hoping some of you will make the remaining recipes that strike your fancy, and share your thoughts about making them? The holiday does have its origins in the local tribes bringing food to the Pilgrims… we could call it our digital pot luck Thanksgiving with everyone bringing something to the table!

If you like, you can email me photos of your final results, and I will post as many of them as I can here. Also, for all you personal chefs out there… the Gardein “Chicken” Piccata tasted great after testing it with freezing and (re)heating. This soup and the celery root soup do well too!



Gardein Stuffed Turkey Roast… are you drooling yet?!

MENU

Appetizers

Artichoke & Oyster Mushroom Rockefeller
Tempura Beet Rollatini with Balsamic Gastrique

Starter

Cream of Asparagus Soup

Main course

Gardein Turk’y Roast
Green Bean and Fingerling Potato Salad
Braised Kale
Mashed Sweet Potatoes (The Conscious Cook style)

Dessert

Oven-Roasted Banana Rum Cheesecake with Pecan Crust
and
Maple Rum Sauce

Cream of Asparagus Soup

Servings: 6

Ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 quarts faux chicken or vegetable stock (try Better Than Bouillon brand)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup thick cashew cream (page 26). plus more for garnish
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach
  • Microgreens for garnish
Directions:

1). Place a large stockpot over medium heat. Sprinkle bottom with a pinch of salt and heat for 1 minute. Add the oil and heat for 30 seconds, being careful not to let it smoke. This will create a nonstick effect.

2). Add the asparagus, celery, onion, and saute 6 to 10 minutes, until the celery is just soft. Add stock and bay leaf, bring to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the cashew cream and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaf. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3). Working in batches, pour soup into blender, cover the lid with a towel (the hot liquid tends to erupt), and blend on high. Add the spinach to the last batch and continue blending until smooth. Pour the soup into a large bowl and stir to incorporate the spinach batch. Ladle into bowls. Garnish each bowl with microgreens and drops of cashew cream.

My notes: I could not get microgreens, so I saved a couple asparagus tips to slice in half as a substitute. This soup is so good, and I ate it as my meal, so I ate double portions of it. Next time I will double the batch!
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  • November 10, 2009
    10:36 pm

    Hi Julie Anne,I love the presentation of the Asparagus Soup. It looks so delicious. I really want to try and make this soon.Great blog and as usual I cannot wait for more.Aussie Mum

  • November 11, 2009
    6:37 am

    I made the celery root and granny smith apple soup – delicious. Cashew cream is amazing. I have also made the pepper corn encrusted portobello fillets, that was also good. I also made the gardein chicken scaloppini. Tomorrow I will be making the pine-nut and basil seared gardein chicken and the banana rum cheesecake. My only concern is that the meals are very rich with so much fat in them all. I am going to try and cut back on the earth balance in the recipes.

  • November 11, 2009
    6:50 am

    You have been a busy Hungry Duchess! I have to admit that I've noticed my clothes fitting a bit tighter. I think most will be equally yummy with a bit less fat, so lets keep comparing notes on that. What has been your favorite so far? I'm such a soup girl I can't get enough of them, and the cashew cream is to die for.Aussie Mom you will love, Love, LOVE the Asparagus soup, and it was fun to make. That is guinea pig #1's favorite… I think it is a toss up between all the soups for me. I plan to make at least 3 next week, and freeze individual portions until I need them so I can have variety (and some cooking time off).

  • November 11, 2009
    11:38 pm

    Hi again, Julie Anne!You just touched on a subject I was going to ask about… freezing. I am hoping to freeze some of these soups in small batches, for more variety (I, too, am such a soup girl!). My question is can we just freeze the cashew cream? I seem to always have raw cashews soaking in the fridge, now! I would like to just have some on hand, instead of always freshly making the cashew cream. What do you think? Have you done this yet, and do you think the cashew cream will do OK in the freezer?Thanks for the inspiration!Jennifer

  • November 12, 2009
    12:02 am

    Hey JenW, the soup freezes, defrosts, and heats back up great! In the book Tal says you can freeze the cashew cream for up to 6 months "(although after it's defrosted it can be a bit lumpy, so it's good to give it a spin in the blender to smooth it out before using it)."

  • November 12, 2009
    6:05 pm

    That Turkey dish looks amazing.I believe you're entitled as a Princess, as well as a Dutchess.Douglas Barton