I am not a fan of soup. In fact, I borderline dislike them. The only one that I really liked in the past (and to this day) was miso soup. The other one I could possibly tolerate is chicken-noodle soup. I am the type of person that never craves soup. I always thought food was something you had to physically chew on – not drink/slurp at it like a common beverage.
Until…one day, about two years ago, my friend’s mother made carrot soup. Now – I am not the biggest fan of carrots either. If I had to have them, I’d rather have the washed and raw – not cooked. So, when my friend offered some carrot soup, I was quick to say no. Carrots…pureed into soup? Gah! Noooo thank you. After a certain amount of pushing and guilting me (“my mother worked so hard on this soup!”), I finally tasted it.
I LOVED it. My God, it tasted like the best thing I ever put it in my mouth. I asked for more then a bowlful then another and would have asked for another when my friend stopped me saying, “well ok, this soup is really for me, so ease up, huh?”. Afterward, I harassed her into telling me what the recipe was. She said it was top-secret! What?! People still do that? I decided not to bug her any more and just went along my way.
To this day, I still think of that soup. Sadly, my friend and I do not speak as much anymore so bugging her for the recipe was out of question. So…I decided to try to imitate the flavor of the soup. After a hellish week of graduate school applications (hope, hope, hope I get in somewhere!), examinations, and work, I finally got the time today to buy my ingredients and get to cooking.
Then I thought…well, I don’t want to make it JUST carrot soup because the majority of my family feels the same as I do – they are not huge fans of carrots. My mother loves it and she loves soup so she was easy to cook for. I also had to find a way to cook it according to my brother’s restrictive diet. After some finagling, I finally put together some recipe in my head. Not only will it be carrot soup, it will be infused with tomato and coconut milk. Would it work? In my head it worked, I only hoped it would work in real life. Alongside the soup, I was going to serve cornbread with sun-dried tomatoes. However, I had to make sure to find a recipe for egg-less cornbread since Kannan (my brother) was allergic to eggs.
First, I made the cornbread. It was easy enough.
Ingredients for Cornbread with Sun-Dried Tomatoes:
- 1 cup of corn flour (I couldn’t use all-purpose flour)
- 1 cup of cornmeal
- 1.5 cups of rice milk
- 1 tablespoon of vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of salt
- .5 teaspoon of baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon of baking powder
- 10 slices of chopped sun-dried tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons of oil (I just used the oil that came with the tomatoes)
According to the directions, the milk and the vinegar was supposed to be mixed and I had to leave it alone for a few minutes while I mixed together the dry batter. After I had done that, I incorporated the wet ingredients until it was all mixed.
After pre-heating the oven to 350 degrees (the recipe called for 450 but my oven is stuck at 350, so bear with me), I stuck it in there until the toothpick came out clean – it took about 20 minutes, I’d say.
While that was baking, I started my carrot-tomato soup:
Ingredients for Carrot-Tomato Soup:
- Two bags of baby carrots
- Half a can of tomato paste (the small can)
- Half a can of coconut milk
- Half of a small, white onion, diced
- 2-3 cloves of minced garlic
Yeah – that’s all I really needed. It wasn’t a complicated recipe. I think the typical recipe calls for vegetable broth, but I dislike broths from the store because they usually have too much sodium for my taste – (or I really forgot to buy it from the store, shh).
I washed and boiled the carrots until fork-tender. When I drained it and let it cool, I sauteed the garlic and onions together until softened. Then, I chopped the carrots up, added the garlic and onions, and liquified them in the blender with some water. I poured it into a large pot and added my coconut milk and tomato paste. While it warmed up, I tasted it and added salt and pepper to my taste.
When that was done – the cornbread was done. Voila!
Yum! Yum! Yum! Dare I say it tasted better than my friend’s mother’s soup?! I DARE!!
I would’ve liked the cornbread to be thicker and fluffier but I’m guessing this is because it is lacking the eggs. Ah well, tasted great anyway!
Now excuse me, I’m going to sneak in some more…Enjoy!