Guest Blog by chef/R.H.N. Courtney Schwegel
As part of a recent project, I created a recipe inspired by the amazing Vitamin A.
Orange and yellow pigmented veggies like the yams and butternut squash in this recipe are rich in beta-carotene, a form of Vitamin A found in plant foods. Butter made from the cream of grass-fed cows gives this soup unctuousness as well as an extra powerful Vitamin A kick! The pumpkin seeds, high in zinc and protein, aid in the absorption and storage of all those gorgeous carotenoids.
This soup (well, the Vitamin A in it anyways) has been known to enhance overall eye-health, promote healing from infection and illness, encourage normal menstruation, help combat skin problems like psoriasis and acne, and even assist in preventing cancer. Consume and enjoy at your own benefit!
Roasted Butternut Squash and Yam Soup
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped into ½-inch cubes
1 medium yam, peeled and chopped into ½-inch cubes
1 medium onion, sliced into wedges
1.5 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1.5 tablespoons fresh thyme
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
¼ cup coconut oil, melted
Water, as needed
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons grass-fed, organic butter (or olive oil)
½ cup pumpkin seeds, lightly toasted
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Toss together the chopped squash, yam and onion in a large bowl and dress with herbs, sea salt and black pepper and coconut oil. Transfer to baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Give the veggies a toss and pop them back into the oven for another 20 minutes, or until they are very tender and nicely caramelized.
3. Transfer the cooked veggies to a large pot and add just enough water to cover. Add cayenne pepper and blend (either using an immersion hand blender or an upright blender) until very smooth. Add more water until desired consistency is reached. Taste and toss in some more herbs if you’d like.
4. Before serving, bring soup to a boil. Incorporate the butter or olive oil to achieve a velvety texture (you may want to add more) and season with salt and pepper to taste.
5. Serve heaping helpings topped with pumpkin seeds. For even more of a carotenoid boost this soup can be accompanied by a spinach salad jewelled with orange segments.
*Courtney Schwegel is my holistic cooking companion – A firm believer that food is the best medicine for both our bodies and our souls, Courtney is following her passion for delicious, healthy meals by pursuing certification as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist.