A Potato Alternative!

This will be a quickie! There is risk and reward in trying new things! Risk is not necessarily the bad taste you may encounter, but the time and cost of buying the ingredients to only have it not be eatable. I was trusting my instincts when I learned that rutabagas are alternatives to potatoes. We try to avoid potatoes, which are nightshades and can flare my husbands autoimmune symptoms. We are getting a little sweet potatoed out!


Enter the rutabaga. I picked up 2 big ones the other day thinking I could either mash them and trick the family into thinking I made mashed potatoes. Or, soup them, which for some reason seemed like a safer option. I found a rutabaga and carrot soup recipe online for general guidelines and then just did my own thing with them based on what I know about making soup.


To our surprise, it was worth the risks and we all voted it was a keeper! On a side note, I was also curious about what exactly this root vegetable was and it's nutritional contents. It is interestingly a cross between a turnip and a cabbage! When cooking, it is best to peel since the skins tends to be waxed. As expected, it's almost entirely carbohydrates, but don't let that scare you, you need carbs (see totally nutrition facts below)! They are a source of vitamin C (always good for us, but especially during cold season), with smaller traces of other vitamins and minerals. Combined with other powerhouses like carrots, celery, onions, bone broth and garlic, you have a very healthy meal on your hands!


RUTABAGA & CARROT SOUP

  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 4 medium carrots, peels and roughly chopped

  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped

  • 2 medium to large rutabagas, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes

  • 6 cups broth (vegetable, chicken or bone broth)

  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/4 tsp pepper

  • 1 cup cashew cream

  • 1-2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • Optional fresh herbs: 1 tsp sage, thyme, parsley (chopped)


In advance, set aside 3/4 cup raw cashews in water to soak for at least 4 hours, or overnight. If you are in a pinch, use hot water and soak for 2 hours.


Using a large stock pot, heat the olive oil for 1-2 minutes on medium. Add the onion and saute until translucent, 5 minutes stirring occasionally to not burn. Add the garlic for another 2 minutes, watching and avoiding burning. Next, add in carrots, celery, rutabaga, broth, maple syrup, salt, pepper and optional herbs. Bring to a boil, then allow to simmer for 30-60 minutes (depending on your time).


Meanwhile, if your cashews are ready, drain and rinse. Add soaked cashews to a high speed blender and add just enough water to cover them. Blend well until completely liquefied. If it's too think, just add a little more water.


When your simmer is complete, stir in your cashew cream and apple cider vinegar. You can let it simmer for another 5 minute to allow the flavors to infuse. You can use an immersion blender, but I use my Vitamix (it's what I have). It may take about three batches in your blender to puree. Once complete, taste test! I like my soup have just the right balance of salt and tang. It may not need more, but if it does, in small amounts, you can add salt and apple cider vinegar to get just the right balance for your taste buds.


Stores in the refrigerator for 3-5 days, freeze for 3 months.


This made about 8 servings, per serving: 185 calories, 9.6 g fat, 484.7 mg sodium, 21.2 g carbohydrates, 4.7 g dietary fiber, 9.9 g sugar (no added sugar), 4.1 g protein, 25% DV calcium, 8% DV iron, 437 mg potassium, 276% DV vitamin A, 42% DV vitamin C.

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