After visiting my parents a few weeks ago, we came home with a truckload of fresh veggies from their garden. Our EarthBox garden, on the other hand, sadly did not have much left in it except the basil. Zucchini was one of the most abundant veggies we had, so I searched online for zucchini and basil recipes. One of my favorite websites, FatFree Vegan Kitchen, once again provided a delicious idea. Creamy Zucchini and Basil Soup was a quick and delicious dinner, and the kids were excited to help with the cooking process by picking their own basil from the garden.
Cashews provide the creaminess but also virtually all of the fat. Omit them if you like, or substitute a few tablespoons of plain soy yogurt.
2 pounds zucchini (about 5 small to medium)
1 large Vidalia onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 cups vegetable broth
1/3 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
3 tablespoons raw cashews
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
additional salt & pepper, to taste
Set aside one of the zucchini; trim and coarsely chop the rest.
Cook onion in a large saucepan for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Stir in the chopped zucchini, salt, and pepper and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the broth and simmer until zucchini is tender, about 15 minutes.
Pour into a blender (in 2 batches, if necessary) taking care to avoid burns by not filling the blender more than halfway. (I used an immersion blender). Add the basil, cashews, and nutritional yeast and blend until smooth.
Return soup to the pot, season with salt and pepper to taste, and keep warm. Shred the remaining zucchini with a spiral slicer, mandolin, or grater. Pour soup into bowls and sprinkle grated zucchini over top.
Yield: 4-6 servings
Nutrition (per serving): 128 calories, 56 calories from fat, 6.7g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 437.6mg sodium, 542.3mg potassium, 14.2g carbohydrates, 2.7g fiber, 4.5g sugar, 6.3g protein, 2.6 points.